Flickering lights and Main Breaker Breaking


  #1  
Old 10-31-03, 11:47 AM
flood
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Flickering lights and Main Breaker Breaking

Hi-
I'm a homeowner and there is problem with the electricty in my house.
--The lights often flicker - everywhere in the house
--The main breaker (100amp) breaks about once a day - and when it does, it is extremely hot to the touch
--I've noticed spraks on the main wires going into the main breaker - the really thick copper lines from the power company. The sparks are right where the wire connects to the breaker.

My assumption is that the main breaker has gone bad and needs to be replaced.

Does this sound right? Is there another likely cause that I'm overlooking?

Thanks,

Michael
 
  #2  
Old 10-31-03, 12:23 PM
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Loose or broken neutral? I would call an electrician immediately.
 
  #3  
Old 10-31-03, 03:35 PM
J
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Loose connection at the main breaker. It could be the wires to the breaker or the breaker to the panel bus. Sparks are NEVER a good thing in electricity. Call an electrician ASAP.
This situation can very damaging to your electronic equipment as well as a fire hazard.
 
  #4  
Old 10-31-03, 06:04 PM
flood
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would I need to replace the breaker as well?

If it is just a loose connection, does the electrician need to replace to fuse or just tighten the wire connection?
If the loose connection is to the breaker panel, could the panel need replacing as well?
 
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Old 10-31-03, 06:09 PM
J
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The fix could be as simple as turning a screw. Don't delay.
 
  #6  
Old 10-31-03, 06:11 PM
CSelectric
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Many loose connections can simply be retightened. Of course, if the breaker is loose on the bus, it may be a matter of reseating it or, if the stabs are contorted or damaged a replacement may be in order.

As to replacing the whole panel. That would only be necessary if the arcing has occured between the breaker and the bus and has been going on long enough to cause pitting, scoring or burning of the bus bars, or excessive carbon buildup on them. That question can't be adequately answered until the panel is viewed.
 
  #7  
Old 10-31-03, 06:23 PM
J
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If you catch a loose connection soon enough it is just a matter of tightening it. If you wait too long it burns up and you will need to replace parts. How many parts depends on the amount of damage.
 
 

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