The tag has no wiki summary.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (2)

6
votes
1answer
12k views

Why is my air conditioner tripping the circuit breaker?

Our air conditioner recently stopped blowing out cold air. When I went to check on it, I noticed that the outside unit wasn't coming on. We had had problems with ants in the contacter in the past, ...
4
votes
5answers
1k views

How Do I Power A 220 Water Heater Off Two 110 Breakers

First off I know this is not the best idea. To start my 200 Amp Main has suffered a partial failure and as it is old (60s) and unusual it will be very hard or impossible to replace it. Since the main ...
3
votes
2answers
223 views

Why does the breaker keep tripping on a circuit with two rooms' lights and a sewer pump?

I have a circuit-breaker that is connected to lights in two rooms, and to a sewer pump in the basement. I had the sewer cleaned out and the pump inspected, and no problems were detected. I then had ...
3
votes
1answer
194 views

Can I wire a secondary 240V breaker box for lab equipment from Europe?

I have a dental lab in Europe and might want to move it to the USA. Some of the equipment rates as high as 4kW, and the the total maximum draw is 15kW for the whole lab. Can I wire a secondary breaker ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

Why does the circuit breaker for my bedroom continue to trip without any visible event after a power loss?

The 20A breaker for my bedroom will trip whenever we have a power outage at my house. If you reset it, it will trip again after an interval, say 5~10 seconds. The longer you wait to reset it, the ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Why does the breaker trip occasionally after I installed a new light fixture?

We bought a house a couple of years ago with a covered light fixture box in the ceiling (a blank cover over a wired box and a blank cover over the switch box). I recently modified a plug-in pendant ...
6
votes
7answers
3k views

How important is circuit breaker breaking capacity?

All else being equal circuit breakers can have different "breaking capacity" - it's the maximum current which the breaker can disconnect and it's typically several thousand amperes. The idea is that ...
6
votes
4answers
4k views

How can I tell if a circuit breaker is worn out?

I was installing a light and tripped the breaker (in retrospect, should have turned the breaker off before starting). When I finished installing it I reset the breaker and tried the light switch. ...
5
votes
1answer
641 views

What is the primary function of the main breaker in a breaker box? How does it differ from other breakers?

Location: California | United States I'd like to better understand the roles of main breakers and sub-breakers. Why are there multiple levels of breakers? I suspect that sub-breakers are intended to ...
9
votes
3answers
3k views

What is electrical code for number of wires in a breaker?

US, Georgia I am adding some new ciruits to add some additional outlets. The closest place is to run a wire to the main panel box. My question is, can I connect more than one wire to a breaker and ...
5
votes
4answers
707 views

Can re-closing a circuit-breaker be dangerous?

I have a circuit breaker that keeps tripping. When i try to reset (close) it, it immediately jumps back to the open position with a noise that sounds a little scary. I have now stopped trying to do ...
9
votes
4answers
5k views

Why does my microwave keep throwing the circuit breaker?

I have a circuit that powers several things in my house: Kitchen microwave Basement lights Basement sockets Sump pump Recently, this circuit has been thrown with alarming frequency when I use the ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the purpose of a double pole breaker for separate 15A circuits?

My new house is done being built and I am going to come in and install my new gas range and dishwasher, both 120V 15A appliances. I got thoroughly confused looking at the breaker box because gas ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Why is my fuse board buzzing when I'm using the shower?

I have used an electric shower for years no problems, but all of a sudden my fuse board started buzzing when I use the shower. I replaced the shower with the same size unit and it still makes a ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

How do I connect a timer to circuit box which controls our outside lights?

Currently our outdoor lights are being controlled by the circuit breaker in the box. We want to connect a timer to the circuit-breaker. There is a junction box with Black, White and a bare ground ...
4
votes
1answer
410 views

How can I figure out why my breakers are tripping?

A few years ago, I installed a solid wood "pocket" sliding door for my workshop. It's on an exterior wall, so I had to add some thick sealing strips that keep the cold air from Wisconsin winters ...
2
votes
2answers
454 views

What does the latch position of a circuit breaker mean?

I bought a new home in December 2011. After some time the kitchen lights and the lights in the living room started to switch off randomly. Some days it would happen 3-4 times in a row. Other days it ...
1
vote
0answers
243 views

Why does half the house go out when a single breaker trips?

The breaker box at my brother's house is well marked and balanced except when a breaker is tripped half the house goes out. I'm currently living on the third floor of his house. When I turned on a ...
1
vote
0answers
43 views

Multiple AFCI breakers tripping at same time [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What could be causing AFCI breaker and GFCI receptacle nuisance tripping? I have a new house. During the last couple of months I will find that multiple breakers will ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Blown fuse replaced, still no power

Yesterday a contractor was doing work in our bedroom. At one point he plugged in a hammering drill and when he used it it blew the fuse. We confirmed the 15amp fuse was dead but I didn't have a ...
3
votes
3answers
501 views

How do I determine if adding an air conditioner will overload a circuit?

I'm going to take advantage of some Memorial Day sales and pull the trigger on a portable AC unit for my "basement-ish" (bottom of windowsill is mid chest, rather than head height) apartment. Before ...
4
votes
3answers
8k views

How do I replace a GFCI receptacle in my bathroom?

we're remodeling our bathroom and were simply looking to switch out 20 year old light almond outlets and light switches for white. While I thought this would be easy I've run into a problem with the ...
9
votes
5answers
3k views

Why would there be a 50 amp plug on a 30 amp appliance?

I have an old conveyor dryer, which my office purchased used some time ago, just sitting in storage. The dryer is for silk screen t-shirts and has a large heating element and a variable speed conveyor ...
2
votes
2answers
280 views

How much current should I expect this motor to draw when it's running steadily?

This fan lists its "Max. Amperage" as 3.2. I assume the motor draws that much when it's first turning on, then settles down to some lower current. How much current should I expect it to draw when ...
5
votes
1answer
876 views

Can i run my cables from the outside box to the inside breaker box through 2x4 studs?

I am turning our carport into a living room and we have a 100amp breaker box outside that feeds power into the breaker box on the inside of our house. the conduit is going to be in the way of the wall ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Is it ever safe to have 14 gauge wire anywhere on a circuit proected by a 30 amp breaker?

I was doing some work in an old house I recently moved into, and found that my dishwasher and garbage disposal (and some outlets near them) are on a 30 amp breaker. However, some of the electrical ...
4
votes
3answers
4k views

Splitting a circuit breaker into multiple lines

I recently found out that several rooms in my house are apparently connected to one circuit breaker. Setup: My wife was in the bathroom drying her hair and I decided it was time to nuke lunch in the ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

GFCI outlet won't come on

I have a couple recently installed (By a professional licensed electrician) GFCI outlets outside a barn, both on their own circuit. Both have water trough heaters plugged into them - 1500 watts each. ...
1
vote
3answers
5k views

What did I do wrong??! Wiring error is tripping circuit breaker

Here's the scoop: There are 3 switches in my hallway. One switch on side A and two switches on side B. Side A switch controls same light as one switch on Side B. I replaced the switch on Side A ...
7
votes
2answers
406 views

What is the best short-term solution for fused neutrals?

I have inherited a house that has been in my wife's family since 1860. I do not know when it was electrified, but it seems to have skipped knob and tube. There is a lot of fabric-covered wire, and ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

What information do I need to select a circuit breaker?

I am having 2 new lines run in my basement to power a workbench's tools and an unrelated computer station. I have room in my panel for additional breakers, and rather than tie into existing wiring, I ...
2
votes
1answer
354 views

How do I recognize which socket cover (fused or 3-pin) connects to which outlet?

I have two power outlets in this room, one is a normal 3-pin (UK) plate cover and the other is a fused (switched) plate cover (much like the one below). I've know removed them and wish to put them ...
0
votes
1answer
4k views

Why has my garbage disposal started tripping the breaker every time?

I have never had a problem with my garbage disposal or that circuit before, however I am now having issues with it. Every time I turn it on, it immediately trips the breaker. I'm not even sure how to ...
7
votes
4answers
3k views

Can I replace an outlet that uses knob and tube wiring with a grounded outlet?

Can I replace an outlet that uses knob and tube wiring with a grounded outlet? Obviously the best choice would be to replace the old wiring. Is there a standard way to ground these outlets? Do I need ...
3
votes
1answer
232 views

Single outlet resettable breaker?

Basically I have an uninterrupted power supply (UPS) which has a 20amp plug and I know that the load on the UPS will NEVER exceed 15 amp (Bought it mainly because it can attach more battery units to ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

Amp rating of ganged circuit-breakers

Backstory: I'm considering replacing my current tank water heater with a tankless whole-house unit. The units I see generally require a 120-amp breaker circuit. Currently, my panel has two ganged ...
2
votes
1answer
647 views

How do I test circuit breakers?

Suppose I need new circuit breakers and buy some at a local shop. How do I test them to be sure they haven't been damaged on their way from factory and will do their job when time comes?
4
votes
2answers
2k views

low voltage from circuit - bad breaker?

Background: I'm doing some rewiring work in the kitchen. There were three circuits coming into a junction box that controlled the sink disposal, dishwasher, a few receptacles and a light. So I got ...
3
votes
3answers
3k views

Why won't my AC system turn off after I flipped the breaker?

We've got a central cooling air conditioner that was installed in 1984 with a thermostat from that same year. We are replacing the thermostat with a new programmable one (which has a 100% ...
7
votes
2answers
7k views

Can I install an additional breaker bus bar on my main breaker panel?

I'm adding several new circuits to my main electrical panel as part of a kitchen remodel. The panel with accommodate the new circuit breakers, but it does not appear to have enough neutral and ground ...
7
votes
2answers
961 views

Are there any “easy” ways to trace a home electrical system?

We bought a home a few months ago, and the electrical panel (and subpanel) are completely unlabelled. We have no way, short of flipping breakers, to know what breaker powers which fixtures. Is there a ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

Why doesn't the main breaker shut off power for house?

Location: California | United States I'm certain I'll need a licensed electrician for this but wanted to get thoughts on what could be going on. I recently noticed that power remains on in my house ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

Is there an average number of outlets that are wired off of one circuit breaker?

I recently demolished my basement to start a reconstruction/improvement project. My first horror was the electrical layout. I've got hidden junctions, mismatched wire sizes, improper junctions and ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the difference between Square D and QP single pole circuit breakers, and can they be mixed?

I just noticed that all of the branches from my upstairs service box are run off of 15 or 20-amp type QP circuit breakers, except for one 15-amp line that is for the hard-wired smoke alarms- it uses a ...
7
votes
2answers
4k views

How much should it cost to add a circuit breaker?

In this question, I asked about problems between my circuit breaker for a circuit shared by my microwave and sump pump. The conclusion was that another circuit should be added to support the microwave ...