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3
votes
3answers
785 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 ...
10
votes
4answers
7k views

What is simplest strategy to map circuits to breakers in the panel?

My breaker box is very poorly labeled and I want to figure out which circuits may have overloaded (or close to it) and which could reasonably handle a little more. In the past I have just tried ...
5
votes
1answer
1k 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 ...
2
votes
4answers
11k views

Why does the main circuit breaker trip but not the smaller branch circuit breakers?

We have one circuit breaker (40 ampere) in entry point of electricity line in our house, than we divided it into two separate line in two levels and put one circuit breaker( 32 ampere) in level one ...
4
votes
3answers
5k 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 ...
3
votes
2answers
14k views

What are the differences between SDS, SDS Plus, and SDS Max drills?

Basically I had to use a breaker last weekend, it was clear I did not need the “heavy duty” as I did not have 6” of solid concrete, but the descriptions of the other options confused me.
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 ...
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. ...
4
votes
5answers
2k 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 ...
8
votes
4answers
710 views

How can I automatically disconnect a coffee maker and space heater without tripping the building's 20A circuit breaker?

My small office has a 20A breaker and we have to run a space heater in the winter or else we freeze to death. Whenever someone turns on the coffee maker, the office circuit breaker trips and ...
1
vote
3answers
7k 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 ...
3
votes
2answers
2k 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 ...
5
votes
4answers
930 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

How can I determine which outlets belong to which circuit?

I'm putting in a powerline Internet adapter for my house (something like this). My mom said it has two circuit breakers, but she has no idea how the house is divided between them. Going across ...
7
votes
7answers
5k views

How is it that two breaker switches control the same things?

Forewarning: I don't know that much about electrical terms, so please excuse any mistakes I've possibly made. I recently moved the TV in my living room and ran a new line for the electricity to the ...
2
votes
1answer
372 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 ...
7
votes
2answers
429 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
1answer
257 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 ...
6
votes
7answers
4k 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 ...
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 ...
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
695 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?
6
votes
4answers
9k 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. ...
4
votes
2answers
3k 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 ...
9
votes
3answers
5k 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
5k 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 ...
3
votes
3answers
4k 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
8k 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
1k 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
1answer
827 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 ...
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 ...
7
votes
4answers
4k 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 ...
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 ...
9
votes
4answers
6k 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 ...
9
votes
5answers
45k views

How do I add more circuit breakers once the breaker box is full?

My house was completely rewired by the previous owner. They tore out all the old knob-and-tube and replaced it with modern wiring. I definitely appreciate this, but unfortunately they left ...