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#37633 - 04/30/04 07:55 PM Arch fault
tichetown Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/30/04
Posts: 4
Loc: Ca
Need some advice. I've got bedroom outlets that are wired using 14/3 romex. When I replaced the regular two pole breaker with a 2-pole arch fault,the circuit fed by the red wire trips the arch fault. When I dissconnet the branch circuit from the homerun, breaker holds. Both circuits have lights and outlets combined. This is my first dealing with arch fault. I want to know if there are certain devices that cannot be protected by an arch fault breaker. Any advice would be appriciated. Thanks

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#37634 - 04/30/04 08:13 PM Re: Arch fault
Ryan_J Offline
Moderator

Registered: 08/19/03
Posts: 1355
Loc: West Jordan, Utah, USA
AFCI's, like GFCI's, don't get along well with multiwire circuits. You need another nuetral.
_________________________
Ryan Jackson,
Salt Lake City

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#37635 - 04/30/04 08:31 PM Re: Arch fault
tichetown Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/30/04
Posts: 4
Loc: Ca
Do I need a second neutral parallel to the 14/3 homerun?

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#37636 - 04/30/04 09:42 PM Re: Arch fault
caselec Offline
Member

Registered: 04/14/02
Posts: 557
Loc: San Jose, CA
Oops……I miss read your first post that you were using a 2-pole AFCI.


[This message has been edited by caselec (edited 05-01-2004).]
_________________________
Curt Swartz

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#37637 - 04/30/04 09:58 PM Re: Arch fault
samster Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/06/04
Posts: 9
Loc: Denver, CO
Are you positive you have the two hots that share the grounded conductor? Or if anywhere else in the home you have the grounded conductor of more than one cir (not your 14/3 cir but a differnt one), in say a two gang switch box and they are all tied together it would trip your two pole AFCI.

[This message has been edited by samster (edited 05-01-2004).]

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#37638 - 04/30/04 10:09 PM Re: Arch fault
tichetown Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/30/04
Posts: 4
Loc: Ca
Do you mean neutrals, when you said grounds? That might be my problem.

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#37639 - 04/30/04 10:40 PM Re: Arch fault
caselec Offline
Member

Registered: 04/14/02
Posts: 557
Loc: San Jose, CA
Did you connect the neutral from the 14-3 to the AFCI or is it still connected to the neutral buss in the panel? If it is connected to the breaker you probably have a ground fault on the neutral somewhere in the circuit or another circuit is sharing one of your circuit conductors. Disconnect all 3 of your circuit wires in the panel and check continuity between each wire and ground. DO THIS WITH ALL POWER TURNED OFF NOT JUST YOUR CIRCUIT! If any wire shows continuity to ground you have a problem and need to start searching.

Curt
_________________________
Curt Swartz

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#37640 - 04/30/04 11:50 PM Re: Arch fault
Lostazhell Offline
Member

Registered: 02/21/04
Posts: 1248
Loc: Bakersfield, CA (Originally Or...
Most common problem I've come across when retrofitting ACFI's in is that the bare ground wire is touching a neutral terminal on a receptacle someplace... You might have a bit of troubleshooting... One way to tell is to 1) unplug everything connected to the problem circuit, turn off all light fixtures. 2) install a regular breaker for the same circuit
3) disconnect the neutral from the panel, cap it off & leave the ground connected 4) restore power & use a plug in tester on the problem circuit... If it doesn't show "Open Neutral" then you have a ground & neutral in contact someplace.. Or possibly, as Samster pointed out, a box where a neutral from another circuit leading to the panel & is tied together (paralleling) back to the panel neutral bar.. (typically would be found in 2 gang switch/recept locations where the lighting & recept circuits are separate)
Hope this helps

-Randy

[This message has been edited by Lostazhell (edited 05-01-2004).]

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#37641 - 05/01/04 08:49 AM Re: Arch fault
caselec Offline
Member

Registered: 04/14/02
Posts: 557
Loc: San Jose, CA
Randy

Since this is a multi-wire circuit I wouldn't recommend energizing it with the neutral disconnected. Doing so could be very expensive.

Curt
_________________________
Curt Swartz

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#37642 - 05/01/04 01:24 PM Re: Arch fault
Nick Kleyn Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/27/04
Posts: 9
Loc: Grand Rapids MI USA
Why are you installing an Arc Fault breaker. Here in Michigan we only have to install it on new installations. Are they making you do it on existing circuits? What a pain in xxx

Nick

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