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Old 03-31-2017, 11:55 PM   #21
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Here is a zen riddle.

I have AFCIs in all the appropriate branch circuits.

In a new house build. I just have the other trades plugging into the 20 amp circuits,.

But their power tools and air compressors are tripping, not the 20 amp circuits they are using, but some of the 15 amp circuits.

It definitely isn't shared neutrals.

If I am by the panels, I hear the AFCI trip, then a couple seconds later, their electric tools.

And while the tool is being used, I cannot reset the breakers they tripped.

There is 2- 240 feeds coming into separate panels.

And if they are using a 20 amp circuit on one panel, one or more 15 amp circuits would trip in the other panel.

I talked about it with my boss, owner, master electrician, and he wasn't sure why.

I al;so noticed, depending on what 20 amp circuit they are using, different 15 amps trip.
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Old 04-01-2017, 04:54 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by degupita View Post
Here is a zen riddle.

I have AFCIs in all the appropriate branch circuits.

In a new house build. I just have the other trades plugging into the 20 amp circuits,.

But their power tools and air compressors are tripping, not the 20 amp circuits they are using, but some of the 15 amp circuits.

It definitely isn't shared neutrals.

If I am by the panels, I hear the AFCI trip, then a couple seconds later, their electric tools.

And while the tool is being used, I cannot reset the breakers they tripped.

There is 2- 240 feeds coming into separate panels.

And if they are using a 20 amp circuit on one panel, one or more 15 amp circuits would trip in the other panel.

I talked about it with my boss, owner, master electrician, and he wasn't sure why.

I al;so noticed, depending on what 20 amp circuit they are using, different 15 amps trip.
afci trips because of spikes, if you have a large load start up on another circuit it can trip an afci on another. use bigger wire from xfmr all the way to receptacles where needed
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Last edited by Wiresmith; 04-01-2017 at 04:56 PM.
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Old 04-02-2017, 12:14 PM   #23
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I've seen AFCIs trip because of defective wiring feeding the main panel.
So much for logical troubleshooting
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Old 04-03-2017, 12:01 AM   #24
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I've seen AFCIs trip because of defective wiring feeding the main panel.
So much for logical troubleshooting
That isn't the case here. These are new lateral feeders.
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Old 04-03-2017, 12:05 PM   #25
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That isn't the case here. These are new lateral feeders.
I've heard and experienced that spikes and RF noise on a branch circuit are felt all the way back to the street. Not too hard to believe since they're electrically the same point.
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Old 04-03-2017, 06:09 PM   #26
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I've heard and experienced that spikes and RF noise on a branch circuit are felt all the way back to the street. Not too hard to believe since they're electrically the same point.
Yeah, that is something.

In this case, it is a new house on a mountain top. Essentially there is no street.
No significant neighborhood.

There is another house about a hundred feet away.
And a steep dirt road.

I don't know how much electromagnetic or radio interference could be up there.

The service utility is all underground around there.

There will be just about every kind of high and low voltage application in this house, in existence, but none of that is online yet, because it is just past the rough in inspection.

Although there are 2 separate 240 feeders running underground to the house, through the concrete and into the 2 panels, they both originate from the same utility box. Which runs to the meter, through a tray, and then separate into 2 outside breaker disconnects. I recall the outside disco breakers are not AFCI. But I will probably check tomorrow to be sure.
I don't know if running a circuit from one AFCI to others, makes them more sensitive.

But since the 2 feeds originate from the same place, it is not that hard to imagine a spike in one panel circuit could trip a breaker in the other panel.
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Old 04-04-2017, 05:14 PM   #27
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You're welcome.

Used them on all types of sensitive electronics to stop EMF issues. They have a definite purpose and work.
I'm new to this product. Are you saying these will eliminate
harmonic noise and reduce afci tripping?
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Old 04-04-2017, 06:01 PM   #28
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I'm new to this product. Are you saying these will eliminate
harmonic noise and reduce afci tripping?
I don't know about AFCI tripping but they were in the specs on many white room computer installs to eliminate electrical noise on power cables.
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Old 04-05-2017, 12:53 PM   #29
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I don't know about AFCI tripping but they were in the specs on many white room computer installs to eliminate electrical noise on power cables.
I would think conduit and shielded cable would have the same effect, since they both change the circuit Z.

I also wonder if they could be accused of defeating AFCI's, in court.
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Old 04-05-2017, 01:44 PM   #30
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The pressure from the insurance industry and the CPSC forced the AFCI requirements into the NEC prematurely.

Don't forget that the insurance industry is the driving factor and beneficiary of these kind of code changes. It's a win-win for them. And naturally the manufacturers are silent because they win also.

Here's a quote I have from a a older CPSC memo to show you how they think. "The proposals related to electrical fire protection seek to add Arc-Fault Circuit Interrupter (AFCI) devices to the existing branch circuits (one per branch circuit) in homes whenever the electrical panel is replaced. The engineering staff believes that AFCI technology will address 50% of the annual residential wiring fires that resulted in an average of 326 deaths, 1,481 injuries, and $646 million in property losses over the 9 year period 1990-1998. With an estimate of 10 AFCI devices at a $15-20 cost differential per device, the additional investment of $150-200 will reduce the risk of an electrical wiring fire by half. A more thorough explanation of costs and benefits for AFCIs is contained in the attached memorandum dated March 10, 2003."

Did you catch the part about saving 646 million in property losses?
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Old 04-05-2017, 05:35 PM   #31
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I would think conduit and shielded cable would have the same effect, since they both change the circuit Z.

I also wonder if they could be accused of defeating AFCI's, in court.
Interesting but in the places I installed them there were on AFCIs. There are filters on all incoming power lines and almost every other run inside the vaults.
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Old 04-05-2017, 06:08 PM   #32
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Did you catch the part about saving 646 million in property losses?
Yes, and they can't prove it

~CS~
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Old 04-06-2017, 05:44 PM   #33
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Don't forget that the insurance industry is the driving factor and beneficiary of these kind of code changes.
and the people who's houses don't burn down, who are the ones paying for the devices.

here is a study on perfectly installed romex that degrades and catches fire. click on full report on right side of screen.

http://www.nfpa.org/news-and-researc...n-of-nm-cables

there not as strict as i would be and require minimum of emt used in wood structures.
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Old 04-08-2017, 04:35 PM   #34
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Wire degradation
Aging over time under high temperature, high humidity and other environmental exposures
Excessive load
Load greater than the rated current under specific temperature
Voltage surge
High Voltage may result in arcing and cause fire
Bad connection
High resistance connection in receptacles, junction boxes etc.
Mechanical damage in installation
Over compression by stapling the NM cable with high pressure, staple puncture, cracking by bending the NM cable with sharp angle, abrasion and hammer impact
Damage due to pest infestation
Damages caused by rodent and other pests
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Old 04-09-2017, 01:09 PM   #35
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CS did a great study/video on AFCI's, several years ago, which prompted me to do another.
My findings were the same as his, they don't work.

I'll bet the majority of trips are false and if it's a dual function (AFCI + GFCI) breaker the trips are due to ground faults.

AFCI's are a great concept but were forced on us way before they were perfected.
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Old 04-09-2017, 02:23 PM   #36
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...AFCI's are a great concept but were forced on us way before they were perfected.
I was just bitching about these on Holt's, but after 18 years of field trials and technical innovation, at what point do we admit failure?

We now have guys installing these things who weren't even born when the NEC adopted them and yet we're *still* fighting nuisance trips and have no effective testing and fault finding mechanism.
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Old 04-09-2017, 02:48 PM   #37
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I would think conduit and shielded cable would have the same effect, since they both change the circuit Z.

I also wonder if they could be accused of defeating AFCI's, in court.
They function as a "low-pass" filter, that's for sure.
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