Bill, In the Canadian Electrical Code, Part I - 19th edition (2002 issue)the following will be added to Section 26.
Branch Circuits in Dwelling Units.
(f) Branch circuits that supply receptacles installed in sleeping facilities of a dwelling unit shall be protected by an arc-fault circuit interrupter; and
(g) For the purpose of Paragraph (f), an arc-fault interrupter means a device intended to provide protection from the effects of arc-faults by recognizing characteristics unique to arcing and functioning to de-energize the circuit when an arc-fault is detected.
In section 32 we deal with the issue of AFCI's and Smoke Detectors.
Rule 32-110(a) (see Appendix B)
A smoke alarm shall be supplied from a lighting circuit, or from a circuit that supplies a mix of lighting and receptacles, and in any case shall not be installed where prohibited by Rule 26-704; or protected by a GFCI or AFCI.
The requirement for AFCI protection is for the circuit supplying receptacles in bedrooms – thus AFCI breakers will typically be installed in the panelboard. It is important to stress that smoke detectors may not be connected to a circuit fed from an AFCI breaker. Smoke detectors may be connected to a lighting circuit, or a combination lighting / receptacle as long as the receptacles are not in bedrooms requiring an AFCI (e.g. bathroom circuit ahead of the GFCI)
Thanks for your response. I am still trying to figure out how I personally feel about having the Smoke Detectors on a Bedroom AFCI circuit. I was just wondering if you had any compelling arguments either way.
I heard today that it will be up to the individual Electrician where I am. The local Inspection Agencies will not enforce the 2002 NEC requirement that smoke detectors in a bedroom must be on a AFCI protected circuit.
Re: AFCIs in Canada#101591 02/13/0208:24 AM02/13/0208:24 AM
I will be called upon this summer to swap out a 60amp fused panel to a 100amp breaker panel. Last summer when I was first called over to give a quote on swapping out the service they also wanted all recp's and light sw's replaced with the decora style. So I factored in gfci breakers for the upper floor bedrooms recp's which are only 2 wire circuits (no ground), this would allow me to use 3 prong outlets on ungrounded circuits with out having to try and rewire the top floor. Will these bedroom circuits require AFCI protection?
Re: AFCIs in Canada#101593 05/16/0205:52 PM05/16/0205:52 PM
In Ontario, AFCI breakers will not be required retroactively, even if the service is upgraded. They would however be required for an addition containing a bedroom.
Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters will only be required for new construction, and additions or renovations when a new circuit is provided for a bedroom. AFCI's will not be required when existing receptacles are simply replaced.