Dryer blew main breaker...HELP please.


Old 02-06-09, 01:51 PM
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Dryer blew main breaker...HELP please.

Hi, Do it your self people...
I have a question i hope you can help me with.
Last week my Main breaker blew ( #100 ),
I wasn't sure why.... i has both washer and dryer going... as i reset the main breaker everything was fine that day but during the week the same thing happened, so i thought to use the washer on it's own then use dryer... and everything was fine, but not practical to do the laundry one at a time...
Today i ran the dryer for 25 minutes and the main breaker blew... so i thought to test it again to see if it was the dryer blowing the main breaker #100 and i turned on the dryer and with in 5 minutes the main breaker blew....
my house is only 8 years old and i never had a problem like this before and its my first house i bought so i'm not sure what to do or why the dryer is blowing my main breaker instead of the dryer breaker... please help me.. thank you very much..
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Old 02-06-09, 02:52 PM
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Have you noticed any "hot" or "burning" smells near the panel box? Any popping noises or flicking lights? Does the main breaker feel warm after it trips?
Old 02-06-09, 03:16 PM
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Dryer should be on a separate breaker between main and dryer. That breaker should be the one popping. Dryer or wiring to dryer may have short in it.
Old 02-06-09, 03:23 PM
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Since the breaker only trips after a period of dryer use, I infer that it is an overload condition, not a short. As Ben says, feel the main breaker after it trips to see if it is warm. It probably is.

It is possible that you are using more power than 100 amps can provide. That depends on what else is running in your house. The water heater (if electric) and the cooking appliances (if electric) and the furnace or heat pump (if electric) are the other big users. Do you have electric versions of any of these? Are you using them when the breaker trips? Do you have any space heaters? Jacuzzis? Tanning beds? Kilns? Welders? Compressors? Clothes iron?

If it seems that you aren't using much when the breaker trips, then perhaps the main breaker is bad. As an experiment, you might try shutting off every other breaker in the house except the ones for the washer and dryer. Then (while sitting in the dark), run those two things together for a while. If the breaker still trips, then I suggest you call an electrician and have the main breaker replaced.
Old 02-06-09, 09:09 PM
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Thank you all :)

Thank you all for your responds..
When running the dryer, nothing else is running. The breaker box doesn't feel hot, and i don't smell anything.. but thanks for the tips and i'll keep it in mind to notice if i smell of hear anything out of the ordinary.i'll have to call someone to check it out...
I know nothing about the breaker box and as much as i really want to fix the problem on my own or with you kind people, but i guess i will have to give in and call a professional.
I'll keep all you nice people up-todate on what will the out come be and maybe you can help another

Thank you all again. and maybe one day i'll be able to help you.
Old 02-07-09, 03:34 AM
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do wash
unplug refrig
run dryer 1 1/2 hour
plug in refrig if dryer ran fine
maybe a simple test
Old 02-07-09, 08:39 AM
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How old is the dryer? I'm guessing you have a short in the element or motor somehow. It is not shorting to ground but is shorting between phases. That would be the only way to trip your 100 amp main unless you have a bunch of other things your are running but you have already said you don't. The short, in theory, should take out the breaker for the dryer first but I have seen many times where it takes out the main or both at the same time. The issue is in your dryer, not your panel.

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