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Electric Furnace Trips Breaker

Why does my electric furnace trip the circuit breaker when it is turned on? This electrical wiring problem is about a Tripping Breaker for a 220 Volt Electric Heater.

Problem with an Electric Heater
Electrical Question: Why does my electric furnace trip the circuit breaker when it is turned on?

My electrical wiring project involves Tripping Breaker for a 220 Volt Electric Heater.

This electrical wiring question came from Bill, a Homeowner in Winter Garden, Florida.

Dave’s Reply:
Thanks for your electrical wiring question Bill.

Tripping Breaker on a Electric Heater

Application: Tripping Breaker a 220 Volt Electric Heater
Skill Level: Intermediate to Advanced – Best performed by a Licensed Electrical Contractor, or Certified Electrician.
Electrical Tools Required: Basic Electricians Pouch Hand Tools, Voltage Tester, and appropriate Safety Gear.
Estimated Time: Depends on the personal level experience, ability to work with tools, install electrical circuit wiring, and the available access to the project area.
Electrical Safety: Identify the electrical power source to the 220 Volt Electric Heater, turn it OFF and Tag with a Note before working with the electrical wiring.
Electrical Wiring Parts and Materials: Electrical parts and materials for the 220 Volt Electric Heater should be approved for the specific project and compliant with local and national electrical codes.
Electrical Codes and Inspections: Installing or changing home electrical wiring should be done according to local and national electrical codes as adopted in Winter Garden, Florida. A permit and inspections may also be required.

Tripping Breaker for a 220 Volt Electric Heater

This electrical wiring problem is about a Tripping Breaker for a 220 Volt Electric Heater.

220 Volt Heating Element Causing a Tripping Breaker

From what has been described in this question, I would focus on the heating element that has been disconnected. The wiring to the element should be inspected for any discoloration or a faulty connection. If there is nothing wrong with the wires or where the wires connect for the element then the element is most likely at fault. It is possible that a portion of the heating element has shorted to a grounded surface of the furnace which has caused the 50 amp breaker to trip off when the furnace is turned on and is calling for heat. The power to the electric furnace should be turned off and the heating element assembly should be removed and inspected. If the heating element has any irregularity, or there are signs that an electric arc has occurred then the heating element will need to be replaced.
Also, the wire size for this specific furnace should be compared to the installation manual to make sure the circuit wiring is correct.

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