Q:

What causes a circuit breaker to get hot?

A:

Circuit breakers get hot when the current exceeds the rating of the breaker. The electricity that flows through the circuit produces heat in the unit. When that heat reaches a certain point, the breaker trips and breaks the circuit. Warmth indicates that the circuit is at or near capacity.

Circuit breakers are designed to be the weakest point in the electrical circuit to prevent potentially dangerous overheating or faults within the walls, which could start fires. If a circuit breaker becomes warm to the touch, relocate some of the devices on that circuit to reduce the load on the current.


Is this answer helpful?

Similar Questions

  • Q:

    Why does my circuit breaker keep tripping?

    A:

    A circuit breaker trips when the current traveling through the circuit exceeds the rating of the breaker, causing it to become warm and spring open. This occurs when too many electrical devices are plugged into a single circuit. Moving some of the devices to other circuits should relieve the problem.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What does a circuit breaker do?

    A:

    A circuit breaker cuts off an electrical circuit in building wiring any time that electrical current goes above a safe level. Its function is similar to a fuse, although circuit breakers can be used more than once.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What determines the circuit breaker size?

    A:

    The load a circuit is to carry determines the appropriate size circuit breaker. For safety, the total circuit load should be 80 percent of the breaker's capacity. This allows for factors such as ambient temperature and its effect on the operation of the circuit, according to Electrical Construction & Maintenance.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How can you tell if a circuit breaker is bad?

    A:

    A breaker may be bad if a circuit running from the breaker panel box has lost power. A process of elimination can determine if a faulty breaker is the problem. Test to see if the breaker has simply been tripped. Firmly move the switch on the breaker from the on position to the off position and then back again.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore