Pool pump breaker trips, breaker warm.


Old 06-25-04, 09:17 AM
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Pool pump breaker trips, breaker warm.

My 3/4 HP pool pump keeps tripping the gfi breaker at odd times, sometimes a couple times a day. I checked it right after it tripped this morning, it was quite warm, and after I reset it I could here an uneven sort of arcing sound in the panel, so I tripped/reset it a few times, and the sound went away. Do breakers go bad? Rusty contacts? This panel had some moisture issues and there is a little rust in there. The pump has a dedicated 20 Amp line, so shouldn't be overloded, and the motor is only 2 years old.
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Old 06-25-04, 09:55 AM
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Also, I noticed that the 60 Amp breaker next to the pumps 20A breaker is always very warm while the ~30A draw, 220v heat pump runs, but the heatpump calls for a 40A breaker, so I'm curious whether this is normal? The 60A breaker is essentially the main for the garage, and in the garage panel the heat pump is on a 40A breaker, which is cold, and there is really nothing else running on that 60A circuit except a fridge, so I don't understand why the 60A breaker is warm, but the 40A breaker would be cold? I would think either both would be cold, or both warm, since they are seeing the same current, no?
Old 06-25-04, 11:13 AM
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I pulled the main panel cover and checked the connections to the very warm 60A breaker, and remeved and reseated it, it was fine, but I found this
"Note - a circuit breaker should not feel hot to the touch. You can touch the breaker with the backs of your fingers. The breaker should feel room temperature or warm. If it is hot, this could indicate a problem. Do not ignore it."
so upon closer inspection, I noticed the "new" 60A breaker that the electrician installed (the warm one in question) when the garage was wired, is quietly buzzing. That, coupled with the warmth (I turned off the heat pump to reduce the load to neglidgeable, still a little warm and buzzing) leads me to beleive it's a bad breaker. Another thing I'm thinking is the excess heat from the 60A breaker is passing directly to the neighboring 20A breaker which is tripping randomly, and contributing to what is probably a borderline 20 year old gfi breaker to begin with, and causing both problems.

Am I on to something, or no? I guess I should replace both breakers, since the contractor isn't likely to be "reachable" on a Friday afternoon anyway.
Old 07-08-04, 07:37 PM
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Replacing the "new" 220V/60A breaker the electrician had installed with a same-rated one from HD solved the hot/humming problem, which was also the source of the adjacent 20A breaker's tripping at random, from the heat it was receiving from the neighboring breaker.

thanks for the help, brings new meaning to "Do it yourself!"
Old 07-08-04, 07:43 PM
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