This is going to be a question and answer it myself, just to share. What would cause a freezer in my garage to suddenly start tripping it's breaker? It's a regular breaker not AFCI or GFCI. House built about 1970.

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The issue turned out to be rodent damage. To diagnose, I plugged the freezer into a different circuit and it worked fine. The breaker tripped again, no load on the circuit. Also, other electrical problems. Another circuit was failing. As we all know, failures of cables inside walls is extremely rare. Usually somebody has drilled through one or nailed it. I traced it down by pulling switches and outlets and testing for continuity and shorts between them. I pulled off some sheetrock and found a dead mouse in the wall and the cable chewed through.

A couple of times here I've mentioned potential rodent damage for electrical problems. It's real and have personally experienced it. It's hard to find and sometimes, even harder to fix in inaccessible areas like vaulted ceilings.

Mouse eating cable

  • Talk about one heck of an electrifying mousetrap! Glad you were able to lick it! Jan 3, 2021 at 20:47
  • @ThreePhaseEel LOL, Trust me I didn't "lick" it other than metaphorically! I have more pictures of other damage that I'm still trying to find. But I just wanted to share that rodent damage is real, hard to diagnose, and sometimes very hard to repair. Jan 4, 2021 at 1:16
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    The mouse licked it... Jan 4, 2021 at 5:40

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