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Electrical Wire and Cable

Why Circuit Breakers Trip Off and What To Do Next

What Causes a Circuit Breaker to Trip Off? The Most Common Problems that Cause a Tripping Circuit Breaker.

Circuit Breaker Problems
Electrical Question: Are tripping circuit breakers dangerous for computers and electronic devices?

Help, I need to show how dangerous this could be if the owner proceeds as planned.
Thank you.

This electrical question came from: Mona, from Daly City, California.
See more about Electrical Wiring in California

Additional Comments: Awesome website, Thank you.

Dave’s Reply:
Thanks for your electrical question Mona.

Why Circuit Breakers Trip Off
2-pole-circuit-breaker

Application: Identifying Electrical Circuit Problems.
Skill Level: Intermediate to Advanced – Best performed by a Licensed Electrical Contractor or Certified Electrician.
Tools Required: Electricians Pouch of Hand Tools for Rough-In Wiring, Electric Drill and Auger Bits and Extension Cord. All safety measures must be taken for your protection while working around environmental and construction hazards and when working with all types of tools.
Estimated Time: Depends on the extent of the project, the type of construction and available access to the project area.
Precaution: Any existing wiring in the project area should be identified, turned OFF and Tagged. Old electrical wiring that will be replaced with new electrical wiring should be removed.
Notice: Installing additional electrical wiring should be done according to local and national electrical codes with a permit and be inspected.

The Purpose of a Circuit Breaker

Circuit breakers prevent electrical overload that could damage electrical wiring components which could result in a fire.

Troubleshooting a Circuit Breaker Problem

The Most Common Problems that Cause a Tripping Circuit Breaker

Question about a Circuit Breaker Problem: My son has a circuit breaker that just started to trip pretty much as soon as he resets it.

This electrical wiring question came from Jim, a Handyman, in Hurst, Texas.
See more about Home Wiring for Texas

IMPORTANT: If a circuit breaker is tripping off it may not be a problem with the breaker itself.

What to do about a Tripping Circuit Breaker

Now that we have discussed the possible problems associated with a tripping circuit breaker the following should be considered for possible solutions:

Selecting the Right Circuit Breaker

Important: A tripping circuit breaker may be an indication that additional circuits may be required.

More about Electrical Wiring and Circuit Breakers

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Electrical Panel Circuit Listing

Electrical Circuit Breakers
2-pole-circuit-breaker

Using Testers to Identify Electrical Problems
digital-tester


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