a main breaker trip nain 100 amp panel

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  #1  
Old 12-24-10, 10:24 AM
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a main breaker trip nain 100 amp panel

hi, on the main breaker
the house is empty as far some ome there. the furnces is being replace.
there was 3 space heaters 110 volts. i am sure they are not on the same circut. when i went down to the panel onlly the main was off. a electrican toll me to check the ground to the water line and the heaters could be on the same side or same phase. this causing a unbalanced load.
[a] i have idea what he means by unbalanced panel. if your panel is rated 100 amps. how can 3 110 heaters cause the trip. the amps they draw i don't think is close to the 80% of the main
[b] and how would the ground effect the nain when nothing went to ground
the only things maybe was on some lights[lamps] there where no other breakers off. replaced the main and seem to be holding it been a week since this happean.
thankyou fo any answears
 
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  #2  
Old 12-24-10, 10:42 AM
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There is no reason that 3 - 1500 watt (the wattage of most 120 volt heaters) could trip the main. Even if they were all on the same phase. If the main was tripped (and not just turned off) there is some other cause.

The ground water bond should not have anything to do with the main tripping unless there was a short to ground. (And it would have to be a pretty good sized short to trip the main before the branch circuit breakers.

You may have fixed it already with replacing the main breaker.
 
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Old 12-24-10, 10:54 AM
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[a] i have idea what he means by unbalanced panel. if your panel is rated 100 amps. how can 3 110 heaters cause the trip. the amps they draw i don't think is close to the 80% of the main
Three 120v heaters set on high, usually 1500 watts, would draw 37.5 amps. As you say well under 80%.

[b] and how would the ground effect the [main] when nothing went to ground
It shouldn't. The ground is not needed for a correctly wired circuit to function. It is there for safety.

You did check connections in the box when you replaced the main? If so all you can do is wait and see.

There is a risk in leaving portable electric heaters on in an unoccupied house. All it takes is a corroded connection causing higher then normal resistance anywhere on the branch circuit to start fire that may be fully involved before neighbors notice and call the fire department. Also in my personal experience the plugs tend to melt after a while and cheap receptacles are destroyed by heat. Takes time, months maybe years but the effects are cumulative. Best to drain the pipes and add non-toxic antifreeze to the drains.
 
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Old 12-24-10, 01:19 PM
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The o/p said it was only while the furnace was being replaced, and it seems that the main was only bad.
 
  #5  
Old 12-25-10, 11:01 AM
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thank's everyone for the reply , i will unplug the heaters at night and turn othe water or let it run alittle and keep then only a hour and turn them offa while.
thank's for the help
 
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