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Top 3 Reasons Your Home’s Circuit Breaker Keeps Failing

It’s scary when the power goes out for no apparent reason, and what’s even worse is when it trips again after you’ve reset the breaker.

You may not realize circuit breakers have a built-in mechanism for protecting us from the power flowing through our homes. They are designed to shut down when they detect a fault in the electricity flow to help prevent electrical fires.

Here are the top three reasons your home’s circuit breaker keeps failing so the next time it happens to you, you’ll know exactly what to do.

Overloaded Circuit

This may be the circuit failure you’ve heard of the most or maybe even experienced. A circuit can only handle so much power – 1400 watts, to be exact. When you exceed its capabilities, it shuts down, just like you would if you were overloaded with work! This can easily happen by plugging in too many high-powered appliances into one power strip or by plugging in a faulty device.

To ensure this doesn’t happen, add up the wattage of all the appliances you’re plugging into a single power strip to ensure it’s under the power limit. It’s also a good idea to give each major appliance its own circuit.

Short Circuit

A short circuit is a serious issue caused by an active electrical wire touching a neutral wire. In the event of a short circuit, your breaker will shut down to prevent an explosion or fire and may even spark, smoke or cause your outlets to turn black. They are difficult to identify, but typically with a short, your breaker shuts down and won’t start back up. They can be caused by several factors, including wire breaks, loose connections, faulty electrical switches or even animals chewing on your wires.

If you have a short circuit, the best course of action is to call in a professional to help identify the cause to avoid further damages to your circuits or dangerous fires.

Ground Fault

In a ground fault, the live electrical wire has touched the ground copper wire or the side of the outlet box, causing a surge of power to go through the circuit breaker and shut down. It can be identified by a burning smell coming from your outlets.

This one is especially dangerous because live electrical wires could be hanging loose and cause fires or injury. If you suspect a ground fault, call in an electrician to help you find and fix the issue.

Now that you can identify why your circuits keep breaking, here’s how to easily reset it. Make sure you make a note of and only reset the breakers that have tripped so that you’re not resetting your entire house. Reset the breaker by switching the handle all the way to the off position and then flipping it back on. Stand back in case there are sparks or smoke. The lights in that area should reset and come back on.

If you find that your breaker continues to trip even after being reset or if you smell smoke, it’s time to call in the professionals at Bacon for help.

If you have a short circuit, the best course of action is to call in a professional to help identify the cause to avoid further damages to your circuits or dangerous fires.

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