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Please help explain why my garage [breaker] keeps tripping

Please help explain why my garage [breaker] keeps tripping

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  #1  
Old 11-29-12, 01:46 PM
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Please help explain why my garage [breaker] keeps tripping

hello - I would appreciate some pointers to help me determine the solution to this issue.
My breaker for my Garage and Outdoor circuit keeps tripping. Its on a 15A GFCI breaker.

This is the background:
1- Was working fine with two (very old) Garage Door Openeners some outdoor plant lighting and other outlets occasionally used for pressure washer, power tools etc.
2 - I removed the 2 GDOs, and replaced 1 with a new 1HP one. Everything continues to work fine.
3 - A few weeks later, the breaker is tripped, when i reset it, it trips when I use the GDO. It also trips at other times (unknown) as a occasionnaly would go to the garage and the light wouldn't work and hence i know that its tripped again - without using the GDO.

Attempted diagnosis to date:
1 - Since I need the GDO I am leaving that wired in. I swapped the GFCI with another 15A one I had spare from my hot tub circuit. Problem still the same.
2 - I disconnected outdoor lights. Problem still the same.
3 - I then made the GDO the last point of the circuit, and disconnected everything past that (lights, other recepticles etc) Problem still the same.
4 - I connected GDO to another recepticle (laundry room) with an extention lead, thats 15A too and it worked fine and did not trip it.

Help!
I'm stuck now. I need the GDO and another GDO when I install that too, so need this fixed asap.
Any help or pointers are much appreciated...
 

Last edited by ray2047; 11-29-12 at 02:27 PM. Reason: Change "Fuse" to "breaker".
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  #2  
Old 11-29-12, 02:30 PM
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You might consider replacing the cable from the breaker box to the first device since you seem to have eliminated every thing else. How hard would that be?
 
  #3  
Old 11-29-12, 03:28 PM
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Or a faulty breaker................
 
  #4  
Old 11-29-12, 04:07 PM
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Chandler suggested:
Or a faulty breaker.
FerDeLance Wrote:
I swapped the GFCI with another 15A one I had spare from my hot tub circuit. Problem still the same.
 
  #5  
Old 11-29-12, 04:29 PM
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You might consider replacing the cable from the breaker box to the first device since you seem to have eliminated every thing else. How hard would that be?

Ray2047:
Thanks for the reply. Yes I considered replacing the cable. It would be possible if the run was free enough to pull through the wall with new cable attached to the other end - the panel is just below and behind the garage, so maybe.
But then I thought, why would a cable fail like that? Unless it was comprimised I don't see how it could be the cable.
 

Last edited by ray2047; 11-29-12 at 05:26 PM. Reason: Remove incorrect BB code and add correct BB code..
  #6  
Old 11-29-12, 04:40 PM
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Breaker vs. GFCI, am I missing something? If the breaker continually trips and does not trip when another cord is brought in on a different circuit, I would suspect the original breaker as being faulty. GFCI isn't tripping. Breaker is.
 
  #7  
Old 11-29-12, 05:22 PM
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Breaker vs. GFCI, am I missing something?
I thought the breaker was the GFCI and he tried a different GFCI breaker and there was no tripping. Am I confused?
 
  #8  
Old 11-29-12, 05:26 PM
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Don't know. We'll find out, hopefully. I had to re-read all the posts just to make sure my train of thought hadn't jumped it's tracks
 
  #9  
Old 11-29-12, 07:17 PM
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I think the OP's new garage door opener has a fault tripping the GFI breaker. I'd advise a temporary test using an extension cord plugged into a known different circuit to plug in the garage door opener in to for 2 or 3 days and see if the GFI breaker continues to trip after the opener has been removed from the circuit.
 
  #10  
Old 11-29-12, 10:15 PM
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when the GFCI breaker trips i just need to reset it like a normal breaker by the toggle switch. Not reset the GFCI protection - does this mean it's faulty? Both of mine are in that case.

To clarify - it worked fine when connected to another breaker, which was not a GFCI. The one that trips is GFCI but its not tripping the GFI part its tripping the whole breaker if you get what I mean.
 
  #11  
Old 11-29-12, 10:47 PM
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when the GFCI breaker trips i just need to reset it like a normal breaker by the toggle switch. Not reset the GFCI protection - does this mean it's faulty? Both of mine are in that case.

To clarify - it worked fine when connected to another breaker, which was not a GFCI. The one that trips is GFCI but its not tripping the GFI part its tripping the whole breaker if you get what I mean.
It sounds like you have a fault that is causing the GFCI protection to trip. When the GFCI protection is provided by the circuit breaker, the breaker trips just like any other breaker. There is no separate GFCI part.
 
  #12  
Old 11-30-12, 08:26 AM
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By GFCI part i mean the Reset button - I don't need to reset the GFCI using the button, just toggle the breaker back on. So is that a faulty GFCI breaker?
 
  #13  
Old 11-30-12, 10:08 AM
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GFCI circuit breakers do not have a reset button, only a test button.
 
  #14  
Old 11-30-12, 10:54 AM
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By GFCI part i mean the Reset button - I don't need to reset the GFCI using the button, just toggle the breaker back on. So is that a faulty GFCI breaker?
That one button on your GFCI breaker isn't a reset button, it's a test button. As soon as you get the breaker reset, push it. If that doesn't trip the breaker, then the breaker is faulty. As long as that button trips the breaker, and turning the breaker all the way OFF and then ON resets it, then the breaker can be assumed to be functioning properly.

You should, BTW, be testing that breaker by tripping it with the test button and then resetting it once every month. The same is true for all of the GFCI devices in your house. I don't know many folks who remember to do that, but doing it as it occurs to you is better than not doing it.

It sounds like there's a ground fault in your new GDO that does not trip 15A thermal overload protection but does trip GFCI protection. How long did you leave it plugged into the non-GFCI laundry room circuit? The fault could also be in the receptacle in the garage ceiling, and only appear under load.

What is the amp draw of your 1HP GDO? A 1HP motor can draw up to 13A. Two of those would definitely overload a single 15A circuit.
 
  #15  
Old 11-30-12, 12:42 PM
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hi guys -

Just wanted to ask if maybe the GDO is really less than one HP. Seems like all you see for the residential world are 1/3, 1/2, and 3/4 HP.

But if it's really 1 HP, then .......never mind.LOL
 
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