3 Causes of Arcing in an Electrical Panel

An arc of electricity is an occurrence when electricity moves along an unintended path. This causes the electricity to jump to the nearest ground object. When an arc occurs in a circuit breaker, it can result in damage to the main contacts. To avoid this problem, arcing contacts are included to protect the main contacts. Here are some of the reasons why arcing occurs in an electrical panel.

Overload

When the circuits within a breaker become overloaded, it can result in the overheating of the electrical panel. This will often occur where the circuit breaker connects to the electrical panel bus. Any equipment used in the electrical output, such as the contacts, can be damaged by the overload and arc. When this occurs, the electricity will often continue to flow despite the failure of parts within the panel. That’s why overheating and arcing might occur.

Overfusing

When you have electricity flowing through an electrical panel, you should only have a certain number of fuses inside the box. If you have too many fuses, it could result in overheating and subsequent arcing. It could also cause those fuses to blow and the circuit to trip. The electricity will continue to flow despite the malfunction, resulting in the arcing of electricity. Burn marks, a burning smell, and buzzing or crackling sounds are some of the ways that you can recognize this problem from outside of your electrical panel.

Faulty Electrical Panels

There are various parts that go into the construction of an electrical panel. If any of those parts are faulty, it could disrupt the flow of electricity. Rather than the electricity stopping, the flow will continue on. This could result in the arcing of the electrical flow. Technically, these failures might not cause arcing but they absolutely contribute to the problem. In this situation, the problem started at the manufacturing facility rather than your home. The way to resolve this type of problem is to replace the malfunctioning part so that the electricity can continue to flow through the system.

The electricity that flows into your home and operates various appliances starts with your electrical panel. If there is a faulty part or overload, it could result in the overheating of the panel. This is commonly how arcing occurs as the flow of electricity won’t stop but will be redirected. Arcing contacts are designed to ensure that your main contacts won’t be damaged in this situation. These are three of the causes of arcing in an electrical panel.

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