CAFCI Breakers

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  #1  
Old 03-27-20, 03:01 PM
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CAFCI Breakers

A contractor installed a handicap bathroom, well shower and sink we already had the toilet, on my sisterís first floor. However, they apparently know nothing about electricity. Because, after being told several times not to connect to any of the existing junction boxes for the other rooms as they breakers tend to trip. The workers still turned an outlet (that was on a 15 amp breaker w/14 gauge wire) into a junction box to use for a light and an outlet over the sink. Which is a regular outlet not a GFCI. Then they tied into another junction box that feeds they entire second floor including the bathroom (old, old old house) to hook up the combination exhaust fan, heater and light and the single switch to control all three. He claimed they canít be controlled separately. So after flipping out on the worker. I canít get ahold of his boss. So Iím going to fix this myself. But as Iím do this, I figured I might as well start on all the other electrical outdated issues. As I was looking to see what all I need to buy I noticed that Home Depot still sells the old breakers that are not AFCI nor CAFCI. SO My question is: if NEC requires all AFCI breakers to be Combination-Type then why do stores sell non combination types? Also, why do they sell regular outlets if they arenít selling the right breakers?
 
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Old 03-27-20, 05:55 PM
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Before criticizing the contractor too much I'd suggest taking a look at the contract and see if it specifies new circuits. Receptacles in bathrooms are required by NEC to be on 20 amp circuits that do not serve other areas of the house. Existing stocks of first generation AFCI breakers were allowed to be sold, but I haven't seen one in several years. I suppose it's possible there are still some out there, but I would only buy the CAFCI type and Home Depot sells them from all manufacturers. Regular non-AFCI breakers are still sold everyday for replacement purposes, for areas of the country that have not adopted the later versions of the NEC that require CAFCIs and for specific equipment. What version of the NEC are you trying to meet?
 
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Old 03-27-20, 06:21 PM
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A contractor
I noticed you did not say "electrician". In my state only licensed electrical contractors are allowed to do electrical work in a home they do not own. Are you sure your "contractors" are qualified?
 
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Old 03-28-20, 04:45 AM
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Non arc fault breakers can still be used for replacement.

it sounds like you contractor isn't qualified or have enough knowledge to be performing electrical work.
 
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Old 03-28-20, 05:00 AM
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Non-arc fault breakers can still be used for replacement.
They are also used in locations not requiring AFCI protection like separate garages, outbuilding, or commercial installations.
 
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Old 03-28-20, 11:16 AM
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Hello again. Yes, Casualjoe, I did check the contact. It specifies a vent and light which the contractor said was to be in one unit. His employees wanted to install the second light over the sink and he agreed. I, however, feel if they werenít qualified to do electrical work they should have had someone who was come in and do that part. Or at least, listen to me when I told them not to hook into the existing wiring and to run 12 gauge to the breaker box using separate breakers. Especially since the room is entirely gutted and the route to the breaker box is so open and accessible. I showed them where to run it and how to take it into the breaker box so there would be no misunderstanding since they tended to act like they didnít speak English. Iím not saying Iím an electrician, but I do know some (have a little background) and apparently more than his workers. I was patient and polite with them when explaining to them about the old wiring and about how to wire the new light, GFCI outlet and combo exhaust fan. They just didnít want to listen to me for what ever reason (I have my own theory). So, yeah I kinda think I have the right to be angry with them. That being said, I am not trying to be rude to you or anyone on this forum here. This is a good resource and Iím glad to have access to it.
Thank you everyone for your answers. All of them helped and it makes since that the stores would still sell replacements of the older breakers. I guess I was just frustrated when I went to buy what I needed and had trouble finding only what I needed because of all the older stuff.
again thank you.
 

Last edited by Tina Kelly; 03-28-20 at 01:06 PM.
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Old 03-28-20, 01:47 PM
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I noticed you did not say "electrician". In my state only licensed electrical contractors are allowed to do electrical work in a home they do not own. Are you sure your "contractors" are qualified?
Excellent point, Tolyn. States can be different. In my state individual electricians are not licensed, but electrical contractors must be licensed by County or municipality depending on their location. Some rural areas do not even have licensing other than a business license. Being qualified is a huge issues in all states.

I showed them where to run it and how to take it into the breaker box so there would be no misunderstanding since they tended to act like they didn’t speak English.
You are bring up an entirely different issue with that statement. If the contractor or his workers didn't speak English makes me think that maybe you had an economy contractor who could have been using day laborers. If they do not speak our language I certainly wouldn't expect them to know anything about our codes.

One way to resolve your problems could be to show the inspector the problems. From your description the work didn't meet code.
 
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Old 03-28-20, 02:59 PM
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Hi, were there any permits taken out for the job?
Geo
 
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Old 04-05-20, 05:19 PM
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CAFCI Breakers

Youíre right. I believe the contractor did hire day labors. He made the comment that ďthese guys work for him a lot.Ē I didnít catch that right away. But unfortunately my hands were tied as I wasnít the one hiring the contractor. See my sister is in a program that helps her to get assistance. Rather itís personal (like bathing, dressing, feeding etc.) or needed home adaptation because of physical limitations. Iíve been taking care of my sister and I built a deck and ramp. But a particular department within the Baltimore Health Department which runs the program my sister is in insisted on hiring the contractor to install the bathroom. So I honestly thought he knew what he was doing at first. Then I hoped an inspector would come to look at it. But none came. Since the electrical was the last thing done, (as they did not Sheetrock the entire bathroom) I didnít know that the guy would not do as I asked. Until I came back and he was gone. I tried to contact the contractor, but he hasnít returned my calls. I tried contacting the representative for my sister with the program, but she told me that no one would be able to come out till after the virus issue is over. So, that is why I wanted to just fix the problem myself. Hence, my questions and fact checks. Trust me, if I had hired the contractor, I would have made sure he had licensed workers. Iíve heard the horror stories. I just never thought Iíd be telling one. Live and learn, right.
 
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Old 04-05-20, 05:30 PM
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Report the contractor to the Department of Licensing in Baltimore. You should be able to fine a complaint.
 
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Old 04-06-20, 06:04 PM
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I am hoping this contractor hasn't been paid yet. That was using the term "Contractor" very loosely.
 
 

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