circuit breaker broken?


Old 10-17-04, 09:35 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 54
circuit breaker broken?

I was using a heat gun rated at 14 amps on a 15 amp circuit, and of course it tripped the breaker. However, when I tried to flip it to the fully off position then back on, it would not go down to the fully off position. Did I fry the breaker?

I'm comfortable doing most electrical work around the house, and have even done some 220 work. If I need to replace it, is there more to it than shutting off the master power switch, swapping out that breaker, and flipping the master back on? Should I call an electrician anyway?

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Old 10-18-04, 01:15 AM
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Why should you need to put it too the fully off position, when i trips it should be in the fully off position, im not quite understanding what happened.

Are you saying that the breaker tripped and now wont turn back on, or its stuck in the off position ??

Old 10-18-04, 01:19 AM
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: USA
Posts: 539
Not quite correct..

[QUOTE=Snape]Why should you need to put it too the fully off position, when i trips it should be in the fully off position, im not quite understanding what happened.

When a breaker trips it goes to the center postion, halfway between on and off. To reset it, you turn it all the way off, then back on.
Replacing the breaker is just as simple as you described. I would take the old one with you to make sure you get the correct replacement. (I was really surprised at how many different kinds there were).
Old 10-18-04, 01:25 AM
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I see, ive never seen a breaker like that in UK, must be different in Canada and US obviously. What is the point of having a fully off position, is it so it fully isolates the circuit for maintainance.

Old 10-18-04, 05:46 AM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Central New York State
Posts: 13,973

The reason that some breakers (some, not all) have a tripped position somewhere between on and off is so that you can tell that the breaker has tripped. If the breaker simply tripped all the way to the off position, you wouldn't be able to tell whether the breaker tripped or was turned off.
Old 10-18-04, 06:28 AM
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Strange, i wonder why them dont employ the same idea over here in the Uk, ares are simply tripped or not tripped no off position.
Old 10-19-04, 09:39 PM
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To the original poster, you may have already found your breaker is probably working again. When you use heating/motor devices and pop a breaker, the breaker has usually overheated. (since this is a 'overload' issue and not a short circuit) 'Overload' issues cause the breaker to heat up before tripping, and as such when they trip it can take a little while for it to cool off and allow you to reset it. In 5 minutes the breaker is usually back to normal.



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