AFCI’s

Did you know that problems in home electrical wiring, such as arcing and sparking, are tied to more than 40,000 residential fires annually and the fires take over 350 lives and injure 1,400 victims a year?

Did you also know that an electrical safety device for homes, known as an arc fault circuit interrupter or AFCI, will provide greater protection from fires resulting from unsafe home wiring conditions?

Typical household fuses and circuit breakers do not respond to early arcing and sparking conditions in home wiring. By the time a fuse or circuit breaker opens a circuit to defuse these conditions a fire may already have begun. Several years ago, studies conducted identified arc fault detection as a promising new technology. Since then, electrical engineers have tested the new AFCI’s on the market and found these products to be effective.

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So what exactly is an AFCI and what is the difference between an AFCI and a GFCI? Are AFCI’s required in today’s homes? Can you install an AFCI yourself? Are there different types of AFCI’s? You will find answers to all of these AFCI questions and more in the following.

What is the difference between an AFCI and a GFCI?

AFCI’s serve their purpose and must not be confused with a ground fault circuit interrupter or GFCI. GFCI devices are designed to provide protection from electric shock. Both AFCI’s and GFCI’s are important safety devices but they have different functions. AFCI’s are designed to identify fire hazards and GFCI’s detect and prevent shock hazards.

Are AFCI’s required?

AFCI’s are proven devices for their effectiveness in preventing fires. Effective January 2002, the National Electrical Code or (NEC) made it necessary for home builders to include AFCI’s into the construction of all new homes.

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Should you install AFCI’s?

Home owners may wish to add AFCI protection for both new and existing homes. Homes built prior to 2002 with ordinary circuit breakers will benefit from the added protection against the arcing faults that can occur in aging wiring systems. If you are considering upgrading your AFCI’s be sure to contact Barney’s Electric. We are expertly trained, licensed professionals who will be happy to perform your AFCI upgrade safely! We can be contacted at 972-771-9464.

There are a variety of AFCI’s. Below you will find a summary of each.

Types of Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters:

Branch/Feeder AFCI – This device is installed at the origin of a branch circuit or feeder, such as at a panel board, to provide protection of the branch circuit wiring, feeder wiring, or both, against unwanted effects of arcing. The Feeder AFCI also provides limited protection to branch-circuit extension wiring and may also be a circuit-breaker type device or a device in its own enclosure mounted at or near a panel board.

Outlet Circuit AFCI – An Outlet Circuit AFCI is a device that is installed at a branch circuit outlet, such as at an outlet box, to provide protection of cord sets and power-supply cords connected to it. The Outlet Circuit AFCI may also provide feed-through protection of the cord sets and power-supply cords connected to downstream receptacles.

Combination AFCI – A Combination AFCI is an AFCI which complies with the requirements for both branch/feeder and outlet circuit AFCI’s. It is intended to protect downstream branch-circuit wiring, cord sets and power-supply cords.

Portable AFCI – A Portable AFCI is a plug-in device that is intended to be connected to a receptacle outlet and provide one or more outlets. A Portable AFCI is also intended to provide protection to connected cord sets and power-supply cords against the unwanted effects of arcing.

Cord AFCI – A Cord AFCI is also a plug-in device that is connected to a receptacle outlet, to provide protection to the power-supply cord connected to it against the unwanted effects of arcing. The cord may also be part of the device and have no additional outlets.

At Barney’s Electric, you can have the peace of mind that all of the electrical materials we install will be the finest that are available. You can also have confidence that we will always keep a clean working environment and leave your home as if we were never there. If you have any questions or we can assist you in any way, please feel free to contact Barney’s Electric at 972-771-9464. For your convenience, you may also request services from this site.

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Barney Messenger is a Rockwall Electrician Serving Dallas, Collin, Rockwall and Kauffman counties

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Cale Watts
Cale Watts

5 out of 5 stars

posted 1 month ago

I submitted an online request at 9pm one evening for some electrical work I needed on a newly constructed patio cover. Barney called me around 7:30am the following morning! Now that's a fast response time! The work needed to be completed asap and had to be coordinated with my builder. They coordinated perfectly with my builder's schedule. They got the work done fast. And this was all done with very short notice!  They were prompt, professional, courteous, and very informative. They even gave me free advice on a non-related issue that is going to save me hundreds of dollars. They did excellent work and cleaned up afterward! I will definitely be using them on other properties and upcoming projects in the near future.  I highly recommend Barney's Electric! 

 

Joanna Rich
Joanna Rich

5 out of 5 stars

posted 1 month ago

I'm new to Rockwall and needed an electrician out as soon as possible due to a circuit breaker not turning back on. Jason worked with me on timing to make sure he was here before the AC company - arriving at my home within two hours of my first contact! Amazing service and they will be my first call for any future electrical work.

Nelda Gillilan
Nelda Gillilan

5 out of 5 stars

posted 4 months ago

Barney's Electric is professional, friendly, and timely. Barney and Jason both were great at repairing our electrical problem today. We are pleased to have found them and will be using Barney in the future for any electrical services we need. Thank you, Barney and Jason.