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Arc Circuit Protection

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Arc Circuit Breaker

In recent years a new type of breaker has been on the market, and that is an arc protected circuit breaker, I suspect if not already that an outlet will be developed that incorporates arc protection, however an arc protected circuit breaker will give protection to an entire circuit not just part of it. In recent years a lot of electrical codes are now requiring arc protection for circuit that serve bedrooms, and the requirements may eventually be expanded.

Arcing generates heat  - sparks from arcing can ignite materials near an outlet, cause damage to an outlet. Electrical arcing is never a good thing, and can cause fires.

An AFCI is just a added piece of mind protection device that hopefully will stop a fire or tragedy, but is not a substitute to fixing poor wiring, damaged outlets, improper use of extension cords and so on, fix the problem, never reply on technology to save you.

They are also suppose to be able to detect what is a normal arcing condition caused by switching on a light or plugging in a cord into an outlet, and only trigger the breaker when  not normal arcing and / or short conditions are detected.

Unless your jurisdiction requires it, I would not recommend using it on such items as a freezer, fridge, furnace, sump pump, these all have motors in them and these items could cause great damage to goods or property if they where to false trigger the arc breaker.

Bellow is some videos that I found posted on 'you tube' regarding the installation of an arc fault circuit interrupter....

(if using IE 10 and the embedded videos do not run [or just show as black blocks] try switching the compatibility mode on the browser) Also if you click on 'You Tube Direct LINK' bellow each embed video it will open in a new window / tab on 'you tube'.

Written: Jan. 14, 2012
 Revised: June 18, 2013
Proof Read / Released: July 9, 2013
Diagrams redrawn with Transparency: Jan. 5, 2014
 By: Donald Kerr

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