Take the 2-minute tour ×
Home Improvement Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for contractors and serious DIYers. It's 100% free, no registration required.

We recently had our electrical panel replaced/upgraded and I noticed that our GFCI breaker was replaced with an Arc Fault breaker. Is that safe? Are GFCI breakers obsolete now?

share|improve this question
    
Possible duplicate –  bib Jan 4 at 22:33
add comment

2 Answers 2

GFCI are still needed because ACFI do not provide the same level of ground-fault protection as GFCI. In the United States, the GFCI is triggered at 4-6 mA of current-imbalance. The trip-limit for AFCI devices is a current-imbalance of 30-50 mA. So AFCI devices do not provide the same level of ground-fault protection as GFCI devices. You may want to use both an AFCI and a GFCI on your circuit.

In addition to ground faults, AFCI devices do also detect arcs. GFCI and AFCI are designed to detect different faults from eachother.

GFCIs are still needed near sources of water (like the kitchen and bathroom), in unfinished basements, and outdoors (among other locations) (and even if the circuit uses an AFCI breaker).

share|improve this answer
add comment

Arc-fault circuit interruption (AFCI) devices typically offer ground-fault protection of equipment (30 mA and higher), but not ground-fault protection of personnel (4 - 6 mA). If ground-fault protection of personnel is required by code (damp, wet, etc. locations), you'll have to install a GFCI device along with the AFCI device.

Check the devices that were installed, and insure that they provide the proper level of protection.

share|improve this answer
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.