Need help with Arc fault & Halo fixtures

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  #1  
Old 10-08-04, 03:11 PM
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Need help with Arc fault & Halo fixtures

Hello All,
Ok I have a new 2nd floor addition that has just had the sheetrock hung and taped.
I wanted to connect a few of the fixtures for light while I paint. Well when I turned on the light the arc fault breaker tripped. But if I put a regular breaker in- all is fine. The recessed fixtures are Halo brand. What can I do?
The electrical inspecter wants arc fault beakers for all bedrooms.
I need to resolve this fast.
Thanks in advance.
 
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  #2  
Old 10-08-04, 05:38 PM
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Might be arcing within the switch (which to a certains extent is normal) causing the trip. Try bypassing the switch (wirenutting the two wires connected to the switch, thereby hardwiring the light fixtures). If the AFCI doesn't trip try a different model or brand of switch.
 
  #3  
Old 10-08-04, 06:15 PM
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How did you wire the afci's at the panel? The white wire coming off the breaker goes to the neutral bar and the white wire from the branch circuit cable goes to the lug on the afci.
 
  #4  
Old 10-08-04, 07:38 PM
Savant
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By chance are these Square-D arc-fault breakers? If so, then they may likely be defective. There was a recall announced for all Square-D AFCI breakers manufactured between March 1 and September 23 of this year.

You can identify the breaker manufacture date by looking for the date code. It's on a small white lable, stamped in red ink, located above the line screw on the breaker. The affected date codes are: CN DN EN FN GN HN JN

If you have any breakers with those date codes, contact your place of purchase for information on replacemnets. (they are still in the process of shipping them out.)

Regards,

Savant
 
  #5  
Old 10-08-04, 08:38 PM
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mikewu99, I'll check that in the morning. Thanks.

Roger, Yep it is wired correctly. All wiring was inspected by a master electrician and the electrical inspector. Thanks.

Savant, Yes they are Square D arc-fault breakers. But I bought these two years ago (but I will check the codes), and I switched the breaker with one that was on the fire circuit.
Thanks.

I'll get back to ya all later.
Thanks again.
 
  #6  
Old 10-08-04, 09:20 PM
Savant
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Hmmm, by chance do you have other arc-fault circuit breakers in the panel? Prehaps you could swap the two arc-fault breakers to see if this is a defective breaker issue. (only do this with the power off and only if you have the technical ability to do so)

Should you swap arc-faults breakers and it still trips, then perhaps you can try troubleshooting the installation. If the circuit doesn't trip with a regular breaker, and you have eliminated the breaker as a possible source of the problem, then there may be a wiring issue. The most common error to cause arc-fault trips in new/upgraded installation is a 'shared neutral'. That means that the neutral from another circuit is somehow tied into this circuit. Normally this wouldn't cause a breaker to trip, but the arc-fault detects that some of the return load is missing and it trips. So you need to check junction boxes and switch boxes to see if there are any neutrals from other circuits that are tied into this circuit. Only devices connected to the hot line of this particular circuit should be connected to the neutral of that circuit and vice versa. It can often happen if a junction box is used to connect more than one circuit, and instead of keeping the neutrals separate all the neutrals are tied together.

Or the neutrals could be crossed. (using a neutral from another circuit by accident) The other possibility is a neutral to ground fault. However, this is usually easy to spot. The shared neutral issue is often a more subtle and hard to find problem.

Regards,

Savant

PS: You don't have more than 1000W of lighting hooked up on this circuit do you?
 

Last edited by Savant; 10-08-04 at 09:49 PM.
  #7  
Old 10-09-04, 02:32 PM
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I agree with all Savant relates. Do the afci's trip if you plug anything into a bedroom receptacle, table lamp etc...? I thought for a while that these lights may not be compatible with afci but have not been able prove that from their website.
 
  #8  
Old 10-09-04, 03:03 PM
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Well now I feel dumb.
See I did not have the chandler connected yet and the neutral was making contact with the ground wire(they were pushed up in the box). I looked up and their it was.
But the arc-fault back in and all is good.
Thanks all for your help.
 
  #9  
Old 10-09-04, 03:21 PM
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It's good to see that the AFCI breaker was doing its job. If you had a regular breaker, and if it took you a while to put up that chandelier, you might have burned your house down. Yea for AFCI!
 
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