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Electrical Circuit works in off position unless disconnected from box

Electrical Circuit works in off position unless disconnected from box

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  #1  
Old 11-12-13, 11:32 AM
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Electrical Circuit works in off position unless disconnected from box

I have a circuit that trips every time it is in the on position. While in the off position, the outlets are still getting power. In fact, everything works fine. The only way to cut the power is to reomve the circuit breaker from the box or disconnect the wire from the tripping breaker. At that point there is no power. I have attempted to replace the breaker and tried two different replacements. Neither solved the problem. Any help would be appreciated.
 
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  #2  
Old 11-12-13, 11:59 AM
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Welcome to the forums!

It sounds like you may have a circuit that is cross-fed from the two separate legs of your service. There are other possibilities too. Regardless, this needs to be corrected.

There are two things you can do as a start: One is to sketch the floor plan of your house, mark the location of each receptacle, switch and light fixture, and determine which circuit is feeding each of those. The other is to turn off every 15A and 20A single-pole breaker in your panel. Then turn on the one that's been tripping and see if it'll hold.

If it does, leave it on and turn each of the other breakers back on, one at a time. See which one causes the other breaker to trip.
 
  #3  
Old 11-12-13, 12:00 PM
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Sounds like you have two breakers accidentally feeding the same circuit. To test is simple but takes awhile. Turn off all 15 and 20 amp 120 volt breakers. Plug a radio you can hear from the breaker box or a trouble light on a long enough extension cord you can see it from the breaker box. Now turn each breaker on. If no power to the suspect circuit turn it back off and go to the next breaker. Repeat till you find a breaker that powers the receptacle. Mark the breaker and turn it back off. Continue till you find a second breaker and mark it. When you have done that post back and we will give more instructions.
 
  #4  
Old 11-12-13, 12:17 PM
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I will attempt to see if two breakers are feeding one circuit. But, I have already removed the wire from the tripping breaker and the power to the outlets goes out. If two breakers were feeding one circuit, shouldn't the power still be on since there would be another breaker feeding it?
 
  #5  
Old 11-12-13, 12:53 PM
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With all circuits in the off position, the radio was still playing. I removed the circuit in question so that the radio would not play. I then turned on each circuit one at a time, the radio never went on. I replaced the circuit that keeps tripping, leaving it in the off position, the radio went back on.
 
  #6  
Old 11-12-13, 02:52 PM
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I have attempted to replace the breaker and tried two different replacements.
Who is the manufacturer of your panel? What brand breakers did you buy as replacements?
 
  #7  
Old 11-12-13, 05:21 PM
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With all circuits in the off position, the radio was still playing. I removed the circuit in question so that the radio would not play.
Do you mean with all the circuit breakers turned off the radio still worked (no batteries- I hope) ?
Then you pulled the wire out of the breaker and the radio went off ?

Then you have a defective breaker.
 
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