On Tue, 22 Feb 2011 16:30:51 -0600, Michael Dobony wrote:
Well, it tripped tonight. I reset it and it is still on. Will check in the
morning to see if it stayed on all night. As far as we can determine only
the one set of outdoor security lights are on that circuit. Nothing else
seems to be off when it trips. It has a new light sensor on it, so probably
not the culprit. Only 5 bulbs on the run.
On Wed, 23 Feb 2011 06:00:58 -0500, Nate Nagel wrote:
With the lights off it is pulling 12 amps. 5 lights at 100 watts each (I
think there are 75's in all the sockets) that is only a little over 4
watts. That gives me 4 amps excess capacity. I have no idea what is pulling
those 12 amps.
no, 5 lights @ 100W is 500W divided by 120V is 4.2A so if with the
lights off you are already pulling 12A that puts you over 15A (or is
this a 20A breaker? I forget.) You ought to be able to neglect
photocell switches etc. as they draw next to no current. Something is
putting a load on that circuit. leave the breaker off; time to start
checking to see what doesn't work... I dunno how accurate a clamp
meter is anyway, I have no experience with them. But if the lights
are the only thing on the ckt. and you're drawing noticeable current
w/ lights off... summat ain't right.
If nothing else, if it is some kind of fault (partially shorted
photocell switch or something) that is causing the 12A draw, you want
to fix it so you're not paying for wasted electricity...
What happens if you pull the photocell and disconnect the wires
there? Still have draw?
If that is the case you need to open up the circuit at the points
you know about and make similar measurements at those
places... Your circuit has additional load on it and you must
figure out what it is...
Can you trace any exposed wiring to see if there is a junction
box where it is tapped ?
Well, something dissipating 1440 watts should be geting hot. An
electric iron only draws about 12 amps/1440 watts, so image something
getting that hot somewhere in your walls??? To check your meter, puit
it on a circuit with no load, then turn on some known light loads on
that circuit, and see if the meter agrees. Once you are sure of the
meter, then you have to try to find the closest point on the line in
question and open it.
you need to know what that breaker is powering. perhaps a hot water
recirculating pump or point of use water heater
if you have lived there for awhile without a problem whatever that
breaker is powering has a problem and might be a fire hazard.
i would rig a work around on stuff your using till i find out what the
mystery load is........
it might be a fire hazard and in any case is running up your electric
You have gotten some excellent advice on how to diagnose
this issue... Normally operating breakers shouldn't buzz...
The larger issue here is your "extreeeeeeeeeeemly old style
breaker" and this issue might just be the tip of the iceberg...
Circuit breakers and the panels they are installed in don't last
forever, this might be the first early warning that you should
consider planning to replace your entire electrical panel with
a new one in the next couple of years...
My breaker or panel in the garage buzzes when I turn on the fluorescent
lights. Twelve 2 bulb 32 watt fixtures on three switches. For each row
of lights I turn on, the buzzing gets a little louder. Although at it's
loudest, it's not that easy to hear but once I noticed it, I hear it.
My breaker doesn't trip.
Good morning all:
Just a thought......depending on where you live.........mabey a heat tape on
a water pipe somewhere? check for EXTERIOR heaters roof, pipes, the line
running to you engine block heater...
While I live in sunny southeren Calif, I ran into something similar at a
family members house in Canada years back. The breaker would only blow
overnight when the temp got gawd-awful low.
I could be wrong, I have lots of practice at being wrong.
On Mon, 21 Feb 2011 10:47:15 -0600, Michael Dobony
A Buzzed breaker is a Drunk breaker.
Buzzed driving *IS* DRUNK DRIVING.
Do not let this breaker drive !!!!
It can and likely will get arrested,
Of course, it sounds like it 'Needs' A-REST
Now, lets begin the procedure to determine the problem at hand.
Your breaker is trying to tell you something is bothering it. Are you
listening? The poor thing is in pain. Please be patient and treat it
with love and tenderness. Otherwise it could commit suicide.
Gently and safely remove the breaker from the panel, and take off the
wire. Place the breaker in a soft padded box, and wrap it well in
soft linen or silk, so it's not injured during transport. Quickly
take it to a breaker psychiatrist, and have it analyzed. It's crying
out for help, so please have a full examination performed, regardless
of cost. Remember, this breaker is your friend, and is there to
protect you. You owe your life to it. The psychiatrist will
determine why it's hurting, and may prescribe medication or therapy.
Do whatever the doctor advises, and allow time for your breaker to
heal and recover.
During it's recovery period, which may take considerable time, you may
want to buy or rent another breaker to help you out and keep you safe
during this time of sadness and sorrow. It's ok to love the new
breaker too, but dont let you old breaker down. Love it like you
always have, and spend a lot of time with it. Take it on a vacation,
buy it good meals, and it would be advisable to sleep with it so it
knows it loved. If the psychiatrist determines that it's condition is
critical, and it may be old and dying, please make it's last days warm
and cozy. It may leave you soon, so be sure to enjoy your last days
together. If you are unable to provide this love, there are special
breaker nursing homes that will assist elderly breakers that buzz, and
will make their last days comfortable while providing their needs.
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