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Electrical Wire and Cable
Electrician Training Electrical Certification wiring recessed light fixtures Electrical Wiring Electrical Troubleshooting and Electrical Repairs wire outdoor light fixture Home Electrical Wiring Diagrams
wiring home generator and transfer switch wiring a 220 volt range cord outlet Wiring for GFCI Outlets Wiring Outlets and a Switched Outlet Wiring and Installing Ceiling Fans and Remote Controls wire dimmer switch wiring diagrams for switches wiring a dryer cord and 220 outlet circuit breaker panel
Electrical Wire and Cable

GFCI Ground Fault
and AFCI Arc Fault Circuit Breakers


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Summary: Electric circuit protection with GFCI provide the extra measure of safety for your family. GFCI's are installed serving required house wiring circuits protecting areas where electrical appliances or products may come into contact with water, such as the kitchen, bathroom, laundry, hot tub areas and more.


GFCI's are an Effective Means of Preventing Severe Electrical Shock




Circuit breakers serving your house wiring circuits are intended for switching and protection of your home's wiring from high temperatures caused by excess current higher than the rating of the wire.

While thermal-magnetic circuit breakers are the key element for overload and short-circuit protection of your electrical system, there are potentially dangerous conditions that do not involve over current.

The following circuit breakers should be utilized to provide further protection.
Residential Electrical Circuit Breakers
Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCI)


Ground-Fault Circuit Interrupters


GFCI's are an effective means of preventing severe electrical shock. GFCI's are installed serving required house wiring circuits to protect areas of the home where electrical appliances or products may come into contact with water, such as the kitchen, bathroom or laundry. They are designed to protect against severe electrical shock or electrocution from ground faults. Ground faults occur when the electrical current in an appliance strays outside its normal path, and the human body becomes part of the path through which the electrical current may flow.


related

AFCI Circuit Breaker Sensitivity


David, from Anchorage, Alaska asks:
I have a Siemens AFCI breaker that has recently begun tripping. It started slowly, tripping occasionally. Now, it won't even reset. The first time it tripped, I reset it and checked it successfully by pushing the button. It held for several days and tripped again spontaneously. Also oddly, we had one night where our ceiling fan light turned on spontaneously in the middle of the night. It's a different circuit and I don't know if it's related, but I thought I'd mention it. Nothing else has been changed or added. The house is 6 years old. I'm curious if it could be the breaker going bad, or something else. Any ideas on what or how to check this out?
Thanks!

Don,
From what you have described it sounds like the AFCI circuit breaker may be sharing the neutral wire of the AFCI circuit with another circuit, which is also known as a multi wire circuit. This practice is fine with non-AFCI circuits, but AFCI circuit breakers do not function well with multi wire circuits. The other possibility is that there is another problem with the wiring of either of these circuits. On way to test this would be to identify the area that the circuit serves and begin disconnecting certain devices or wire paths then see if the problem goes away. When AFCI circuit breakers were new there were a few problems, however these original problems have been resolved but the nature of the arc fault protection might causing the AFCI circuit breaker to be indicating that there really is a problem that may need to be identified and corrected.



related

Questions about Ground Fault and Arc Fault Circuit Breakers



Questions about AFCI – Arc Fault Circuits


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Electrical Tips to Help You Wire it Right

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.


More about Circuit Breakers