Electric Wiring for AFCI in a Home
Can residential circuits dedicated to lighting with AFCI light switches share neutrals with other dedicated lighting circuits with AFCI light switches?
Install New Wiring for AFCI
Electrical Question: Can circuits dedicated to lighting with AFCI and light switches share neutrals with other dedicated lighting circuits?
Can residential circuits dedicated to lighting with AFCI light switches share neutrals with other dedicated lighting circuits with AFCI light switches? Note: I want to avoid using AFCI breakers at the Service Panel. I’ve learned circuits containing any GFCI’s cannot share neutrals with other circuits, but cannot find this answer pertaining to AFCI circuits. This will determine whether I can run 3 wire cable or have to do like my outlets and run separate 2 wire cables for every circuit.
This electrical wiring question came from Brian, a Homeowner in Walker, Michigan.
Thanks for your electrical wiring question Brian.
Install New Wiring for AFCI to a Switch
Application: Install New Wiring for Arc Fault, AFCI to a Light Switch.
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 Switch, 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 Switch 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 Walker, Michigan. A permit and inspections may also be required.
Install New AFCI Wiring in a Kitchen
This electrical wiring project is about Installing New AFCI Wiring in the Kitchen of a Old Home.
AFCI Circuit Wiring
From what you have described, the neutral wire of a AFCI Circuit cannot be shared with another circuit, such as with a multiwire circuit. The AFCI devices will not function properly if this is attempted, and in most cases it will cause the AFCI device to trip off right away. If you are trying to save on wiring expense, then you may want to see if 14/4 with ground is available in your area from your local electrical supply house. The 14/4 Type-NM cable is simply 2 sets of wires for two circuits, however they share the same ground wire. NOTE: AFCI protection can be provided either by a circuit breaker, or the first receptacle of a branch circuit could be a AFCI Outlet which would protect the remainder of the circuit when wired correctly.
The following articles expand on this topic:
AFCI and GFCI Electrical Circuit Breakers
Is a AFCI and GFCI circuit breaker made as the same circuit breaker? Electric Wiring when using AFCI and GFCI Circuit Breakers, and AFCI and GFCI in the same breaker.
Tripping AFCI Breaker Problems and How To Fix Them
What would cause a 15 amp AFCI breaker to trip immediately when it is reset and turned on? The Most Common Problems with AFCI Circuits and How to Fix Them.
AFCI Outlet and Circuit Wiring
How the AFCI Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters and multiple outlets are wired together.
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Complete listing of electrical wire types and parts used for home projects with electrical code information serves as selection guidelines.
Home Electrical Circuit Breakers
A guide to home electrical circuit breakers and how they work to protect your electrical wiring. When properly installed, your home electrical wiring is protected by a circuit protection device.
Kitchen Electrical Wiring
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Wiring Electrical Outlets for the Home
Home electrical wiring includes 110 volt outlets and 220 volt outlets and receptacles which are common place in every home. See how wiring electrical outlets for the home are done.
GFCI and GFI Wiring Diagrams
The features and benefits of GFCI outlets and receptacles will give you a clear understanding of the importance why these safety devices are required by code to help protect you and your family against accidental electrical shock hazards.
This list of articles will help you learn about the features and benefits provided by GFI and GFCI Receptacles and how they are wired.
GFCI and AFCI Circuit Breakers
Arc Fault Circuit Interruption AFCI provides the extra measure of safety for your family. AFCI’s are installed serving required house wiring circuits protecting areas such as the bedrooms. AFCI protects the bedroom circuit devices against the danger of arcing which can lead to fire.
AFCI Circuit Electrical Codes
The following may also be helpful for you:
Be Careful and Be Safe - Never Work on Energized Circuits!
Consult your Local Building Department about Permits and Inspections for all Electric Wiring Projects.
The Safest Way to Test Electrical Devices and Identify Electric Wires!The Non-Contact Electrical Tester
This is a testing tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and is the first test tool I grab to help identify electrical wiring. It is a Non-contact tester that I use to easily Detect Voltage in Cables, Cords, Circuit Breakers, Lighting Fixtures, Switches, Outlets and Wires. Simply insert the end of the tester into an outlet, lamp socket, or hold the end of the tester against the wire you wish to test. Very handy and easy to use.
The Quickest Way to Check for Faulty Electrical Wiring!The Plug-In Outlet Tester
This is the first tool I grab to troubleshoot a problem with outlet circuit wiring. This popular tester is also used by most inspectors to test for power and check the polarity of circuit wiring.
It detects probable improper wiring conditions in standard 110-125 VAC outlets Provides 6 probable wiring conditions that are quick and easy to read for ultimate efficiency Lights indicate if wiring is correct and indicator light chart is included Tests standard 3-wire outlets UL Listed Light indicates if wiring is incorrect Very handy and easy to use.
Strip Off Wire Insulation without Nicking and Damaging the Electric Wire!The Wire Stripper and Wire Cutter
My absolute favorite wire stripping tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and this is the tool I use to safely strip electrical wires.
This handy tool has multiple uses:
The wire gauges are shown on the side of the tool so you know which slot to use for stripping insulation.
The end of the tool can be used to grip and bend wire which is handy for attaching wire onto the screw terminals of switches and outlets..
The wire stripper will work on both solid and stranded wire. This tool is Very Handy and Easy to Use.
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