I just got this from the CPSC newsletter. North American Breaker is recalling fake Square D breaker. See attached
I am not connected to the CPSC in any way. They have a e-newsletter they send out about recall products. You can select from multiple catagories to customize the recall notices. Only personal info they ask for is an email address to send the newsletter to. If you have kids, I encourage you to do so. Kids toys, clothing, car seats, strollers, cribs, and furniture are like the most common recalled items. Click here to sign up.
P.S. I place this post in the wrong catagory. The power that be, may youplease relocate this message for me. thanx
This issue of counterfeit breakers vexes me - especially because It's going to get worse long before it gets better.
As the contractors and electricians, we have no control over the breakers we instal ... we are stuck dealing with the annointed dealer in our area for the appropriate brand of panel. I guarantee that the local electrician isn't cruising flea markets for breakers.
Nor are the 'counterfeits' readily distinguishable from 'real' ones. The 'fake' markings in this example are exactly what the legitimate breakers used to have.
For counterfeit breakers to be sold, there HAS to be the active participation of the importer, the distributors, and the vendor. They KNOW from whom that are supposed to be buying the breakers. There needs to be sanctions ... either legal, or civil, against these parties.
Here's a thought: Breaker makers - how about changing the way you do business? Could these black / gray market issues perhaps be the bastard children of an obsolete distribution method? How about selling DIRECT to the user?
Likewise ... how about developing a field-usable device that lets us test breakers to NEMA specs? As it is, the breaker is a 'black box,' and we can only trust that there's a wizard inside. Ditto for AFCI functions.
There is no Chinese word for "patent" or "copyright". We gave them the technology to make the real ones, why wouldn't we think they diverted some resources to making some they don't pay a commission on.
I puchase all current carrying components through reputable supply chains. They have to much at stake to be caught up in a problem like this.
Well, there have been instances here in NZ and in Australia of reliable supply houses being supplied with dodgy "name-brand" MCB's and other important bits and pieces. Not only does the equipment look perfectly legit, but the box they come in are EXACTLY the same (same product codes, etc) as the real McCoy. Only way it was found out, was because a 10kA MCB was found to in fact have a breaking capacity as low as 2000A, blowing it to bits on fault. I note that Hager (commonly copied by companies in Asia) now uses holographic labels with a watermark in them, on their devices. But, someone is going to get seriously hurt one of these days installing this budget rubbish, more than likely without their knowledge. I mean, would you knowingly buy and install a cheap, poorly made GFCI?, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't!