how to tell if a circuit breker is "bad"

A friend had some other friends staying at their beach house, and there were "problems" with the power. This is third hand, so who knows what the real story is. I may take a short beach vacation to see for myself.
it MAY be something like:
with both washer and dryer on, power went out. Maybe the main tripped. Or maybe one side of the main tripped. Or maybe one side of the dryer breaker tripped.
There is a lot of power consumption and maybe the line voltage was a bit low?
How does one tell if a breaker is acting funny, like only blowing one side? Or if the main is tripping a bit too easily? Do you just buy a few new breakers and give them a whirl?
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On 7/14/2014 6:25 PM, Pico Rico wrote:

Only way I know, is to put ammeter on the wire, and see what the amp draw when the breaker trips. Usually they are cheap enough to swap one in, and see if it works better.
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On Mon, 14 Jul 2014 15:25:59 -0700, "Pico Rico"

It could be something as simple as don't use the toaster and the coffee pot at the same time.
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Oren wrote:

If a double pole breaker only trips one side , it's bad , toss it <there's a mechanical link inside that trips the other side if one side overloads>. If a breaker trips repeatedly under normal loading , IE the usual devices running but it won't hold the load , it's bad , toss it . Same thing for the main , if it trips out under normal loads , it's bad , toss it . DO NOT under any circumstances use a new breaker with a higher load rating !
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wrote:

that is fine, but we will be having Eva Gabor staying at the house.
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Pico Rico wrote:

Hi, I'd check to make sure all the connections are in good order on breakers first.
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wrote:

Have breakfast catered.
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