Not all breakers are created equal. You may have heard of an AFCI (Arc Fault) Circuit breaker and that they’re important. The Atlanta arc fault circuit breaker installation experts at Pat Murphy Electric want to help illuminate the way.
To start with, let’s discuss standard breakers. They protect from overcurrent. So, if too much power is on a circuit, the breaker will trip to protect itself. They can also detect a “short”. A short circuit occurs when electrical current flows outside of its intended path with little or no resistance. Typical causes can be when bare wires are touching one another or if a wire connection has come loose.
Arc Fault breakers go above and beyond your standard overcurrent protective breaker. Arc fault circuit breaker installation in Atlanta homes by Pat Murphy Electric utilize advanced electronic technology to detect different arcing conditions. They monitor the circuit for the presence of normal and dangerous arcing conditions.
What is an arc? Is it dangerous?
Well, an arc occurs when unintended current flows through an unplanned path (most likely not on the circuit) and it generates incredibly high heat resulting in burning particles that could ignite surrounding material, such as your wood framing or the insulation in your home. So yes, arcs have high potential to prove incredibly dangerous.
AFCI’s still protect against overcurrent AND they sense arcing potential. If there is an arc the breaker would be able to tell and trip immediately – helping to greatly reduce the chance of your electrical system starting a fire.
AFCIs are great protection from existing conditions in your wiring that YOU ARE UNABLE TO SEE.
What kinds of pre-existing conditions?
You have nails inside your walls, a lot of them, and metal expands and retracts over time due to heat and cold. If there is a piece of wire that is secured too closely to a nail in your walls, the wire could slip electricity to that nail and with an AFCI, the breaker will trip recognizing an arc fault.
Are they worth it?
Arc Fault Breakers are more expensive than normal breakers. However, they’re more cost effective than repairing fire damage, which is usually the result of an unrecognized arc fault.
In fact, according to Electrical Safety Foundation International – each year in the United States arcing faults are responsible for starting more than 28,000 home fires causing over $700 million in property damage.
At Pat Murphy Electric, our Atlanta arc fault circuit breaker installation team wants to safeguard our customers’ homes as much as possible – arc fault breakers are a great way to do that. Curious if your home is protected?
Give us a call today @ 404-577-4191.