What Does Your Circuit Breaker Really Do?

Circuit breaker box

Like all prudent homeowners here in Jacksonville, Florida, you make it a priority to tour your dwelling periodically to make sure everything is safe. This gives you the peace of mind that you've done your part to keep your family and friends secure against common household dangers.

What Exactly is a Circuit Breaker?

A circuit breaker is a safety mechanism that stands between the supply of electricity from your utility and your home and its appliances. Located at the electrical service panel, you will see circuit breakers that correspond to different areas of your home, such as the kitchen, dining room and bedrooms.

A circuit breaker will automatically turn itself off (often referred to as "tripping" the breaker) according to the maximum amperage load it can accommodate. The job of a circuit breaker is to switch off power to a circuit until you can find out what the problem is.

How Do Circuit Breakers Work?

An electrician installs various circuit breakers that will shut off after reaching a set amount of power. Breakers will trip if the circuit is overloaded, or if there is a short circuit or a ground fault. An overload happens when appliances are trying to get more power than the system can handle. Short circuits result from defects, such as a problem with the wiring in a TV set. Ground faults typically occur in the home where there is a great deal of moisture, such as the bathrooms and kitchen.

Most Common Reasons Circuit Breakers Overload

Putting too many appliances that require large amounts of power can cause the breakers in your home to overload. For example, you will not want to plug a microwave oven into the same outlet as your refrigerator, as this will draw too much power.

Read: My Breaker Keeps Tripping. What do I do?

Does Your Circuit Breaker Need Updating?

Are your circuit breakers tripping periodically? They may be due for an upgrade. If your home is fairly old, chances are it is not up to date as far as meeting electrical codes. For example, modern homes are constructed with ground fault circuit interrupters or GFCIs. These will automatically shut off power to the outlet when there is an imbalance between the power coming in and the power that's going into the appliance. You want GFCIs in your home because they are instrumental in preventing electrical fires

Read 5 Reasons Your Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter Outlets Keep Tripping

Problems With Your Home's Circuit Breakers? Give Us a Call Today!

When the circuit breakers in your home are having problems, there may be an underlying safety issue that needs to be addressed as soon as possible. The professionals at David Gray Electrical Services are devoted to keeping each of customers safe and secure. We would be happy to consult with you on safeguarding your Jacksonville, Florida home. To set up an appointment, please call us today.

 

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