So if I understand your view, Unless they are perfect and can recognize all arcs we should not put them in.
I just can not understand that point of view.
Even if they only work 10% of the time isn't that better then not installing them at all?
As far as your scenario that someone will choose not to rewire because they have AFCIs we can not control peoples bad decisions.
But we can provide them with the newest safety devices even if not perfected.
What was your feeling about GFCIs when they where put into the code, I seem to remember that they where far from perfect when they first came out?
Did you think that people would start taking baths with their hair dryers because they where told GFCIs would protect them?
This to me is the same logic as they won't rewire because they have AFCIs
And sparky66wv please do not take this personally the fact that you have over 2000 posts says a lot about how much you care about your trade, I wish I could get help that cared that much
"I expect that ACFIs might raise the cost of wiring a house by $50-100 and with several 100 thousand homes built each year that makes life saving real expensive unless a lot of lives are saved"
No mater how many homes are built it is still only $50-$100 (your numbers) per house, that is how most of us price jobs not by the total of all houses.
Can you tell me what the value of one life is?
I would say if we install AFCIs in "several 100 thousand homes built each year" we will save some lives.