How This New Electrical Trend Could Affect You
Did you know that around six percent of all fires in the home start due to electrical failures? It’s the primary reason why the Canadian Electrical Code has adopted extensive use of combination-type arc-fault circuit interrupters (AFCIs) over the past four years.
How does it work?
The AFCI provides both series and parallel arc-fault protection to the branch circuit against the unwanted effects of arcing, which helps alleviate fires caused by arc-fault situations. Therefore, since electrical inspectors started enforcing the use of AFCIs, it’s made electrical installations safer.
However, while AFCI technology provides an extra level of safety to the end-user, they are significantly more sensitive than the traditional breaker.
As a result, even the smallest of arc faults will cause nuisance tripping to the AFCI receptacle or the AFCI circuit breaker, which can be frustrating for the homeowner.
For example, if you have a power tool or older plug-in equipment which is “leaking” current, you will be unable to use it as the sensitive AFCI will detect it and trip.
Increase in service calls
An experienced electrical contractor will be able to explain why AFCI devices are not functioning correctly (or causing nuisance tripping) and help to provide a solution.
Sometimes the situation can get resolved by using different equipment. However, most of the time, a modification of the wiring or exchanging AFCIs is necessary, which will involve an additional cost to the customer.
AFCIs are here to stay!
While the cost of implementing AFCIs is significantly more than a traditional breaker, the additional protection they provide is invaluable, so we expect them to be around for some time. Also, the new codebook of 2021 has kept AFCI regulations practically unchanged.
In our opinion, electrical manufacturers are constantly improving AFCI devices, and we expect the nuisance tripping to become a thing of the past as time goes on. We also predict the cost of AFCIs to decrease as the technology matures and the adoption of AFCIs increases.
If you are undergoing an electrical project, we recommend that you choose a qualified electrical contractor like Tuscany Electric Inc. to let you know if AFCIs are required.
With over fifteen years of electrical experience, in Calgary, Alberta, we are well-versed with AFCIs and can help you with all your panel/ wiring upgrades, and lighting solutions.
We specialize in rendering residential electrical services, repairs, installations, and renovations at competitive rates,
We serve clients across Calgary, Varsity, Silver Springs, Scenic Acres, Edgemont, Brentwood, Tuscany, Rocky Ridge, and Royal Oak. We also cover Arbour Lake, Valley Ridge, Bowness, Charleswood, Lynx Ridge, Dalhousie, Banff Trail, and Bearspaw.