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Thread: Arc fault circuit breakers

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member
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    Default Arc fault circuit breakers

    Finishing a basement and local jurisdiction has adopted 2008 NEC code but I'm still having trouble understanding which circuits require the ARC fault. I'm laying out 15AMP lighting circuits and 20AMP outlet circuits. The Bath and the wet bar area will have 20Amp GFI outlets. The basement will have a bedroom, exercise room, entertainment room, wet bar area and game room. I think I need the ARC breakers for each room except for the GFI circuits, is that correct?

  2. #2
    Electrical Contractor/Instructor jwelectric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chukakid View Post
    Finishing a basement and local jurisdiction has adopted 2008 NEC code but I'm still having trouble understanding which circuits require the ARC fault. I'm laying out 15AMP lighting circuits and 20AMP outlet circuits. The Bath and the wet bar area will have 20Amp GFI outlets. The basement will have a bedroom, exercise room, entertainment room, wet bar area and game room. I think I need the ARC breakers for each room except for the GFI circuits, is that correct?

    Everything down there will need AFCI

    (B) Dwelling Units. All 120-volt, single phase, 15- and 20-ampere branch circuits supplying outlets installed in dwelling unit family rooms, dining rooms, living rooms, parlors, libraries, dens, bedrooms, sunrooms, recreation rooms, closets, hallways, or similar rooms or areas shall be protected by a listed arc-fault circuit interrupter, combination-type, installed to provide protection of the branch circuit.

  3. #3

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    Check that your town actually adopted that part of the code. Towns don't always adopt everything within the 2008 code even though they say they are using the 2008 code.

    -rick

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    Thanks, are there any specific brands that you would recomend? I'll be putting them in a new subpanel just for the basement circuits. I'll have single pole 15amp and 20amp breakers?

  5. #5

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    The general idea is "wet areas" GFCI, so bathroom, kitchen, garage, outside outlets, and basement.... Then everything else AFCI.

    But you are finishing your basement... But then you will have a "wet area" (wet bar)...

    To be sure, I would ask your electrical inspector before installing this stuff.

    Dumb question: Would a "finished" basement be less wet than a non-finished basement?

  6. #6

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    What do you mean by brands? Use the brand of breakers that matches the panel you are using. You can't go wrong with Square D QO panels and breakers.
    I consider myself an accomplished DIY'er. I don't know everything but help where I can. I'm not a pro, but like to think I'm professional.

  7. #7

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    Since we are on the topic of Arc-fault breakers, how many outlets can you put on one Arc-fault breaker? Compared to a standard breaker they are kind of expensive and I'd like to put two bedrooms on one breaker.

  8. #8
    Electrical Contractor jbfan74's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by franck@geneseo.net View Post
    Since we are on the topic of Arc-fault breakers, how many outlets can you put on one Arc-fault breaker? Compared to a standard breaker they are kind of expensive and I'd like to put two bedrooms on one breaker.
    Follow the same rules for sizing a circuit.
    Being an arc fault, gfci, or standard breaker makes no difference when sizing a load.
    Yes I am A Pirate-Jimmy Buffett

  9. #9
    Homeowner Thatguy's Avatar
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    From another post in another part of the Cyber galaxy: If you get nuisance tripping you may need to install RF filters.
    http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&c..._nhi=&safe=off

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