The Electrical Contractor Network

ECN Electrical Forum
Discussion Forums for Electricians, Inspectors and Related Professionals

Books, Tools and Test Equipment for Electrical and Construction Trades

Register Now!

Register Now!

We want your input!


2017 NEC and Related
2017 NEC
Now Available!

Recent Posts
Parking lot pole light swap....
by ghost307
Today at 06:25 AM
International Wire Colour Codes
by Tjia1981
Yesterday at 12:08 PM
Son of Sparky
by HotLine1
10/20/16 07:43 PM
Speaking of Plugmold ...
by gfretwell
10/17/16 02:37 PM
Broken battery charger? Check for cobwebs!
by gfretwell
10/17/16 02:30 PM
New in the Gallery:
12.5A through 0.75mm² flex (just out of curiosity)
Shout Box

Top Posters (30 Days)
gfretwell 13
HotLine1 7
ghost307 7
renosteinke 6
Potseal 4
Who's Online
0 registered (), 288 Guests and 4 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#203678 - 10/19/11 07:47 AM AFCI Breaker tripping
sandro2 Offline

Registered: 03/26/05
Posts: 49
Loc: philadelphia,PA
Has anyone ever had a problem with a Powerline AV Ethernet Adapter Kit tripping an AFCI breaker. I rewired a home and there is one in the basement and one in the bedroom and these 2 areas have these devices. Essentially these things provide ethernet network connectivity at any wall receptacle. Everytime the homeowner does large downloads the AFCI breaker trips.

Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades

Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades
Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades
Arc Flash Clothing, Gloves, KneePads, Tool Belts, Pouches, Tool Carriers, etc. etc....

#203683 - 10/19/11 10:46 AM Re: AFCI Breaker tripping [Re: sandro2]
gfretwell Offline


Registered: 07/20/04
Posts: 9025
Loc: Estero,Fl,usa
I bet it is tripping for a ground fault. If this thing plugs in, try it in a SABC or bathroom circuit and see if it trips the GFCI.
Ethernet cables are supposed to be isolated from the DC bus with transformers but YMMV. The DC ground in a PC is tied to AC ground via the base plate of the PC case through the power supply.
Greg Fretwell

#203685 - 10/19/11 11:28 AM Re: AFCI Breaker tripping [Re: gfretwell]
sandro2 Offline

Registered: 03/26/05
Posts: 49
Loc: philadelphia,PA
The whole concept of this device is to use the electrical wiring to pass data to the router. It doesnt trip right away it trips only when they start downloading large files. Its weird because they also have one in the basement and that AFCI breaker trips also when they start data transfer.

#203686 - 10/19/11 12:13 PM Re: AFCI Breaker tripping [Re: sandro2]
KJay Offline

Registered: 11/27/07
Posts: 763
Loc: MA, USA
I would gander that the high frequency two-way data communication is likely screwing with the electronics in the AFCI itself. I'm guessing they were probably only designed to be used with 60Hz, so here is possibly another application from advances in new technology that AFCI’s were never intended to handle.

I would shoot the circuit breaker manufacturer an email so they can begin to make revisions to the next generation of AFCI and add another $20.00 on to the current price for their efforts. frown


ECN Electrical Forums - sponsored by Electrical Contractor Network - Electrical and Code Related Discussion for Electrical Contractors, Electricians, Inspectors, Instructors, Engineers and other related Professionals