(Topic ID: 88775)

OT: Arc Fault circuit breakers


By nitrojcrawf

5 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 16 posts
  • 11 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 5 years ago by John_I
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    #1 5 years ago

    Finishing up new game room and Electrician said, due to code have to install Arc Fault breakers in the game room. Has anyone had any problem with these on there games?

    #2 5 years ago

    My last house had these. Never had a problem. I think these have to be in basement circuits?

    #3 5 years ago

    These breakers detect arcing and will trip when arcing occurs. They should not be used on lighting circuits do to arcing that normally happens when switching. This can cause nuisance trips. I am not sure if these trips would happen with EM games? SS games you would be fine. Follow your local electrical code to avoid issues...

    #4 5 years ago
    Quoted from SealClubber:

    My last house had these. Never had a problem. I think these have to be in basement circuits?

    yea, if finished... gfci required if unfinished...

    for all new work in a home (not just basements), if it isn't a gfci circuit, it pretty much has to be a afci...

    shouldn't be an issue with pins... they've been known to cause issues with some older plasma tv's and similar high capacitance devices in the a/v world though...

    #5 5 years ago

    I'm finishing my basement now too and I have all Arc Fault breakers for the outlets (which most will have pins plugged in). Just do what I plan on doing....install them to pass inspection and if any problems occur, take them out and install regular 20A breakers. When I sell the house, I'd put them back in the box to meet code. Simple...

    #6 5 years ago
    Quoted from conester:

    I'm finishing my basement now too and I have all Arc Fault breakers for the outlets (which most will have pins plugged in). Just do what I plan on doing....install them to pass inspection and if any problems occur, take them out and install regular 20A breakers. When I sell the house, I'd put them back in the box to meet code. Simple...

    That's exactly what I was going to say.

    I have installed pins on Arc and no problems have occurred, so I think you will be alright.

    #7 5 years ago

    My Kirby vacuum cleaner would almost always trip the AFCI in that house. Very annoying.

    #8 5 years ago

    Now we talking Arc fault not ground fault. There is a big difference.

    #9 5 years ago

    I just built a new house before the new year and it came with a lot of arc fault breakers. What a joke those things are. From what I understand they are required in Florida now (after Jan 1, 2014). I had three or four of them that popped all the time. The fluorescent lighting in my garage, the LED lighting in my gameroom and the refrigerator were the main offenders. I replaced all of them with regular breakers and have not had a problem since. I'm not sure what people are going to do who built houses this year. The refrigerator breaker popped EVERY time the compressor on my frig turned on.

    #10 5 years ago

    AFCI's are a pain in the butt. EMs will set them off (although it's intermittent). Plus they cost 10x more than standard breakers. Go to Lowes and Home Depot and see all the AFCI's in packaging that's been opened It's a common thing to install them for inspection, then take them back. I use a mix of them -- if properly installed they are good, but the much-higher cost of them is also a problem. And as others have said, they shouldn't be used in certain applications and I believe it's illegal to use them on a fire protection circuit. I think code requires bedroom circuits to be AFCI protected now.

    #11 5 years ago

    I know in Ohio they want them in all bedrooms and living space. Since the game room is in the down stairs great room they are required......I have all solid-state machines so should not be a problem but was just checking if anyone has had an issue.
    thanks

    #12 5 years ago

    John_I when was your house built? AFCI protectors have improved over the years; I had one that blew every time my laser printer powered on, but I replaced it with a newer model and it has not been a problem since. I don't remember specifics, but at some point in the last 10 years they improved them to reduce those types of false positives significantly. My house was built in ~2004, I think that's around the time they became required here in TX. Since AFCI is code for any bedroom (here in TX), its definitely safer to have them installed where they're supposed to be.

    #13 5 years ago
    Quoted from gcp:

    John_I when was your house built? AFCI protectors have improved over the years; I had one that blew every time my laser printer powered on, but I replaced it with a newer model and it has not been a problem since. I don't remember specifics, but at some point in the last 10 years they improved them to reduce those types of false positives significantly. My house was built in ~2004, I think that's around the time they became required here in TX. Since AFCI is code for any bedroom (here in TX), its definitely safer to have them installed where they're supposed to be.

    I moved in late December. These are the latest models and made by GE.

    #14 5 years ago

    Our house was just build in November...and has a bunch of those breakers. About 2-3 times a week one trips somewhere...it's pretty damn annoying.

    Kinda funny..if I'm using my laptop and it's plugged in...and the fan turns on. Booooom....there's go the living room.

    I'm in the process of finishing the basement and will add 12 20A circuits. You can best your ass they aren't gonna be Arc Fault!

    #15 5 years ago

    Did you guys with "nuisance trips" ever consider that maybe you had some problems? Just because your refrigerator doesnt catch fire today doesnt mean there isnt arcing in it that could catch fire someday. If the AFCI sensed arcing, then its probably arcing. The NEC that requires these things has saved countless lives over the decades and every new advancement has always been met with the same kinds of voodoo skepticism that AFCI are being met with.

    #16 5 years ago
    Quoted from 7Warpig7:

    Did you guys with "nuisance trips" ever consider that maybe you had some problems? Just because your refrigerator doesnt catch fire today doesnt mean there isnt arcing in it that could catch fire someday. If the AFCI sensed arcing, then its probably arcing. The NEC that requires these things has saved countless lives over the decades and every new advancement has always been met with the same kinds of voodoo skepticism that AFCI are being met with.

    Very good points and I agree that AFCI tripping should not be written off as nuisance without thoroughly checking into the integrity of the wiring.

    It is widely known that ballasts and electronic ballasts such as in modern LED lighting can cause false trips. That said, my house was brand new so you better believe I had the electricians check every single connection and every single wire nut before swapping out the breakers. Anyone who has retrofitted AFCI into an old house especially and is having problems should make the electricians check out all of the wiring. They will most likely find a loose wire nut or pinched wire somewhere.

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