Off and Pop for changing sockets

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On Sunday, November 30, 2014 6:01:37 PM UTC-5, Stormin Mormon wrote:

You trusted that breaker to a) trip and b) trip fast enough.
If it failed, then you'd have had at least 200 Amps flowing down that branch circuit.
Hopefully that's enough to trip the main breaker. If not, you just burned the church down. If there happens to be enough load on that circuit, you might not trip the main, at least not fast enough.
I would not trust the safety to catch me if I had an easy alternative, and a good electrician would have one. I think I would rather see an electrician work on a circuit live and carefully than stress a breaker that way.
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On Sunday, November 30, 2014 8:05:44 PM UTC-5, TimR wrote:

Not that I'm advocating the method, but if the breaker doesn't work, maybe it's better to find out while an electrician is there, watching, instead of some future time when it similarly won't trip with an accidental fault.

Only until the main breaker opened.

If it doesn't trip the main breaker, then something is likely wrong with the main breaker too.

And then you'd go on living with that defective breaker and main breaker, thinking that they are working, when they are not.
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On 12/1/2014 4:39 AM, trader_4 wrote:

Exactly!
From: http://www.emersonnetworkpower.com/documentation/en-us/services/ers/documents/ers_allar0106e_02-yt-01.pdf
Why Test Circuit Breakers? They fail. A survey by Hartford Insurance Company found that air circuit breakers represent 19.5% of electrical power system failures. Test results on circuit breakers by NETA (InterNational Electrical Testing Association) firms show over a 15% failure rate. Defective circuit breakers can allow extensive damage, personnel injury, or make an outage more widespread when a fault occurs. They can also trip when they shouldn’t causing expensive downtime. There is no way to know if a circuit breaker will operate properly under fault or overload conditions unless it is tested, preferably by a primary injection test. (Refer to NEMA Standard AB 4 “Guidelines of Inspection and Preventive Maintenance of Molded Case Circuit Breakers Used in Commercial and Industrial Applications.”)
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On Monday, December 1, 2014 8:05:49 AM UTC-5, Berndt Butz wrote:

/documents/ers_allar0106e_02-yt-01.pdf

Well, maybe this isn't as bad a practice as I thought.
I looked at this: http://static.schneider-electric.us/docs/Circuit%20Protection/Molded%20Case %20Circuit%20Breakers/0100-400%20A%20Frame%20FA-LA/FA-FC-FH/0600DB0105.pdf
which has some interesting graphs on the speed breakers should open.
If I'm understanding correctly, it might be safer to overload the breaker w ith a dead short, because the magnetic component will react much faster tha n the thermal component does with a lesser overload. The length of time fo r a breaker to trip on a mild overload (double) is scarey.
It is also possible that the breaker for that circuit would not trip at all , because a dead short overcurrent might trip the main breaker first. That leaves you not knowing which breaker controlled that circuit, but maybe th at's nto a problem. Well, wait, maybe it is. Now you don't know if your b reaker for that circuit is bad and didn't trip when it should, or is good b ut because of coordination the main went first.
The point about finding a bad breaker with an electrician present is valid. But that assumes he's a good one! Since shorting an outlet to find a bre aker is not standard practice, that remains to be proven.
Suppose you short an outlet and the breaker doesn't trip immediately. What do you do now?
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On Monday, December 1, 2014 9:03:22 AM UTC-5, TimR wrote:

,

rs/documents/ers_allar0106e_02-yt-01.pdf

se%20Circuit%20Breakers/0100-400%20A%20Frame%20FA-LA/FA-FC-FH/0600DB0105.pd f

with a dead short, because the magnetic component will react much faster t han the thermal component does with a lesser overload. The length of time for a breaker to trip on a mild overload (double) is scarey.

ll, because a dead short overcurrent might trip the main breaker first. Th at leaves you not knowing which breaker controlled that circuit, but maybe that's nto a problem. Well, wait, maybe it is. Now you don't know if your breaker for that circuit is bad and didn't trip when it should, or is good but because of coordination the main went first.

d. But that assumes he's a good one! Since shorting an outlet to find a b reaker is not standard practice, that remains to be proven.

at do you do now?
Turn off the test load or dead short switch and look for a fire. But, if neither breaker trips, with a dead short, you probably don't have time to do that. With a little thought, you could come up with a tester that could test it safely. Or a "tripper" that would pull greater than breaker curren t to trip it, without being a dead short, etc. Unless Stormin knows for sure what was in that electrician's box, it's possible it is that kind of trippe r, ie there is more in there than a dead-short switch.
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On 12/1/2014 10:14 AM, trader_4 wrote:

Electrician said to be sure to get at least 80 amp button, so as not to fry the contacts on the device.
I've also considered using two hair dryers to trip a breaker. Two at 15 amp load.
- . Christopher A. Young Learn about Jesus www.lds.org .
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I did leave that part out. After tripping the breaker we did look for it and then lock and tag it. After all it still needs to be turned back on at some point.
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On Sunday, November 30, 2014 5:23:55 PM UTC-5, Ralph Mowery wrote:


at

Some of the machines we worked on could be fed from more than one breaker, or even more than one panel. There might be a motor circuit, fan circuit, controls circuit. So you could be inside it having tripped one breaker and still be at risk. The only way to avoid that is to know what breakers fee d the equipment.
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On 11/30/2014 5:26 PM, Ralph Mowery wrote:

In this case, it was a week day. There were two workers in the building. The electrician popped the breaker, and I never left his side. There was zero chance that one of us lazy and cheap workers would turn on the breaker at that point.
Reminds me, I've got to check my lockout tagout gear one of these days. I'd not want to be too lazy and cheap.
- . Christopher A. Young Learn about Jesus www.lds.org .
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You never can tell when someone else will come by and turn the power back on. Where I live I have been told if you want to do some major rewireing you can pull the meter out of the housing yourself. A licensed electricial was doing some work at a church. He had pulled the meter, laid it on the ground and was working inside. He got a bad shock. Went outside and found someone had put the meter back in. Must have been someone from the power company as it had the power company seal on it.
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On 11/30/2014 6:43 PM, Ralph Mowery wrote:

I'd be tempted to hire attorney to sue the power co for gross negligence.
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On Sunday, November 30, 2014 7:01:00 PM UTC-5, Stormin Mormon wrote:

The power company was not negligent. The "licensed electrical" was negligent in not tagging out the power properly. He took a shortcut and paid the price.
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wrote:

But what if someone else comes by and turns on the power ?
Where I worked we had to lock and tag all the disconnects. About the only exception I can think of is if the disconnect was in direct sight and you never lost sight of it. Due to other factors we seldom did even this because we could never tell if we were going to have to leave to get a part or bathroom break.
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On 11/30/2014 6:48 PM, Ralph Mowery wrote:

What if, what if. Is that the best you can offer at this moment? What if you stop writing silly drivel on my thread?
- . Christopher A. Young Learn about Jesus www.lds.org .
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On Monday, December 1, 2014 8:05:49 AM UTC-5, Berndt Butz wrote:

Well, maybe this isn't as bad a practice as I thought.
I looked at this: http://static.schneider-electric.us/docs/Circuit%20Protection/Molded%20Case%20Circuit%20Breakers/0100-400%20A%20Frame%20FA-LA/FA-FC-FH/0600DB0105.pdf
which has some interesting graphs on the speed breakers should open.
If I'm understanding correctly, it might be safer to overload the breaker with a dead short, because the magnetic component will react much faster than the thermal component does with a lesser overload. The length of time for a breaker to trip on a mild overload (double) is scarey.
It is also possible that the breaker for that circuit would not trip at all, because a dead short overcurrent might trip the main breaker first. That leaves you not knowing which breaker controlled that circuit, but maybe that's nto a problem. Well, wait, maybe it is. Now you don't know if your breaker for that circuit is bad and didn't trip when it should, or is good but because of coordination the main went first.
The point about finding a bad breaker with an electrician present is valid. But that assumes he's a good one! Since shorting an outlet to find a breaker is not standard practice, that remains to be proven.
Suppose you short an outlet and the breaker doesn't trip immediately. What do you do now?
-----------
you are supposed to remove the breaker and test it in a test set up, not by testing it in place and threatening your home.
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What a surprise that people insane enough to pop breakers like that have a bizarre kind of mutual respect. You two could easily be the inspiration for the movie "Dumb and Dumber." As someone else noted you could have very well burned down the church with your ill-advised shortcut.
FWIW, nowadays, "people" is almost always the right choice when you are talking about more than one person. Some dictionaries don't even include "persons" as the plural of "person" anymore, and the few dictionaries that do include "persons" note that it is uncommon, archaic, or going out of style.
--
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trader_4;3315460 Wrote: >

I'm with Trader on this one.
I can see a small market for a combination rheostat and ammeter that would plug into a wall outlet (or light bulb socket) and allow a person to increase the amperage in the circuit by reducing the resistance across the gizmo until the breaker tripped. I expect that if you can't buy such a gizmo it would be easy enough to make one.
The only problem I can see is that lots of circuits don't have electrical outlets on them, and most that do often have multiple outlets on them. Even something like a laser printer or TV set will be drawing significant current when the device is shut off. That's because many electronic devices need to draw that current all the time in order to be "instant on" when you do want to use them. Otherwise people would have to wait for the device to come up to operating temperature before they could use them, and a laser printer is a perfect example of that.
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nestork


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I tried to google to find out how long a circuit breaker will last.
It turns out quite a while, on mechanical operation or overload.
One Square D breaker I found data for was rated at 12,500 cycles mechanical operation (meaning you turned it off by hand) and 2,800 electrical operati on (meaning it overloaded but did NOT fault). I would think mechanical ope ration would depend on how much current was being drawn at the time, and I always try to turn off loads before flipping a breaker just in case. We ha d a nasty explosion in the plant once when somebody flipped a disconnect un der load.
I could not find the fault rating for that breaker but several other search es said a breaker is guaranteed to interrupt the full fault current (meanin g a short) ONCE, and should be replaced after twice. So Stormin and his bu ddy just reduced the life of that breaker by 50%.
AND: violated OSHA in the process. OSHA says it is forbidden to re-energi ze a tripped breaker without inspection and testing, UNLESS it is known tha t the trip was caused by a simple overload and not a fault current. The ar cing of a fault current can damage the contacts that have to open to interr upt the current. OSHA applies to a workplace, I'm not sure if that include s a church or not. Anyway, that breaker did not see a routine overload, bu t full bolted fault current.
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You will not have the amp meter but you could always use 2 hair dryers. Each one is rated just below the breaker rating. Turn one on and then turn on the other to do the actual tripping. Feel free to subistute any other two devices that the total is close to two times the rating of the breakers. Go to about 2 times the rating because as discussed above the smaller the overload the longer it will take for the breaker to trip.
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There are several kinds of breakers. Some are made to use as switches such as cutting lights off every night and some are not to be used as switches.
I could send some pix of an explosion where I worked. This was in a 480 volt 3 phase motor control center that was fed with another breaker of about 300 amps. The MCC has about 10 rows and 5 motor starters and breakers, each one about a foot square. An electrician turned on a 15 amp breaker/disconnect and something arcked and took out most of the MCC.
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