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Thread: AFCI Circuit trips when I turn on lights

  1. #16
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    New England


    So, you'd prefer we tell you an answer that applied to a code your local inspector doesn't use and isn't applicable?

    There is NO nationally applied, consistent electrical OR plumbing code, accepted in all locations. Some things are the same in any that apply, but many locales rewrite them to suit themselves. The ONLY way to be sure it meets local codes is to know exactly where you are, and which code they use.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  2. #17
    DIY Junior Member mc_1_2_3's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Western Pennsylvania


    My issue is that he implied that I am lying about talking to my local code inspectors.

  3. #18
    Like an engineer alternety's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006


    As has been mentioned already above, check you fixtures. If neutral is touching ground the AFCI will trip. I found several Ikea ceiling lights with internally pinched neutrals that grounded. And one that grounded the hot wire. It was the luck of the draw which wire got pinched.

    Test them disconnected before you put them up. And/or inspect visually. One of them was pinched but not completely through the insulation. Tightening it to the ceiling finished it.

    The design was built in such a fashion as to almost require something getting the insulation pinched and grounded. They left wires running around that should have been tied down. And the final manufacturing or installation was done blindly so the problem could not be seen by the assembler/installer. Yes I reported it to Ikea.

  4. #19

    Unhappy Please Do not Pee Here

    On each other over my question... I thank ALL of you for your advice, whether or not you agree with each other Let's all play nice

  5. #20


    The list of codes being followed is just a starting point. What matters is the local authority having jurisdiction (AHJ) interpretation of the codes. For example, one city near me says no AFCI protection on paddle fans or smoke detectors.
    When I work in other AHJs, I have a check list that I go over with the inspector. This saves thousands of dollars.


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