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Author Topic: Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters (AFCI's)  (Read 757447 times)
KF7CG
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Posts: 1192




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« Reply #720 on: July 02, 2017, 06:55:35 PM »

Here and lurking. Nothing in my house to cause problems and neighbor houses are old enough not to be a problem unless someone remodels. A lot of new homes in my area just not close to my home, but in town.
KF7CG
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W5YZ
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Posts: 164




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« Reply #721 on: July 03, 2017, 06:33:28 AM »

Happy 4th of July to you and everyone out there.
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W5YZ
Member

Posts: 164




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« Reply #722 on: July 08, 2017, 11:13:25 AM »

The ARRL is going to publish AFCI info in September:  This from Tom Gallagher:

George
As you can see from the response the article is scheduled shortly. You may not know but that date represents an accelerated time line since typical time between authors submission and publication is 6-9 months.


Tom

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W4TL
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Posts: 130




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« Reply #723 on: July 15, 2017, 12:14:40 PM »

Anybody out there??

It's been a good while since I visited this forum as I have for the most part given up on operating because of the density of this 1140 home Del Webb Community (The Village at Deaton Creek). It has been at least 2 years since I have operated HF from this location.  I am in Phase III of this community and all of the 400 homes + or - in this Phase have the faulty Eaton AFCI's.

To explain how this affects unknowing amateurs I'll try to explain.  I have had 2 ham friends move into this community knowing nothing about the AFCI issue.  They bought existing homes from former residents.  Both of these amateurs began asking me about antennas, etc and were about to try to get on the air.  I advised them to seek information about the Eaton AFCI's and make their own decision about trying to get on the air in this neighborhood.  I advised them that when they started operating that they were going to get to meet their new neighbors real quick.  After reading information on this forum and others they both decided it would be best if they didn't try because of the inherent problems associated with these devices.

This is the whole point of this issue, when an unsuspecting amateur moves into a neighborhood full of these devilish devices they are going to be in for a rude awakening (my 2 ham friends certainly were).   

I hope everyone is doing well and I will be waiting to see how much in depth the ARRL will publish this new information about the AFCI issue.  Will it be a few sentences or will it be an in depth article (which in MHO it should be)?  We'll just have to wait and see.

73'

Terry, W4TL
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W5YZ
Member

Posts: 164




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« Reply #724 on: July 17, 2017, 06:31:29 AM »

Welcome back Terry.  Hope you sent this to Tom Gallagher.
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K3LRH
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Posts: 87




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« Reply #725 on: July 17, 2017, 07:20:21 AM »

Welcome back Terry.  Hope you sent this to Tom Gallagher.

Yep. welcome back.  Hoping that something "good" comes out of this.  We have Eaton breakers in out 3 y.o. house, but they are not arc fault type.  September QST is not that far off...reading August right now.  GL 73
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KH6AQ
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Posts: 7718




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« Reply #726 on: August 13, 2017, 10:04:51 PM »

Neighbor #2, the one who had standard (not the HAM suffix model) Eaton AFCI devices installed, is not yet connected to the power lines.

Neighbor #2 is connected to the grid now and his Eaton AFCI devices are not tripping when I run 500 watts to a vertical 90' from his house. So far only 40 and 20 meters have been tested. After I talked to his electrician the electrician said he will use GE AFCI devices from now on.
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KH6AQ
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Posts: 7718




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« Reply #727 on: August 16, 2017, 09:53:51 AM »

We did some testing and at least one Eaton AFCI device is tripping from RF. Joe Fello at Eaton will be contacted. 
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W5YZ
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Posts: 164




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« Reply #728 on: August 16, 2017, 05:08:07 PM »

The September QST article on AFCIs is available at  arrl.org/afci-devices  Well written by Mike Gruber.
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W5YZ
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Posts: 164




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« Reply #729 on: August 16, 2017, 05:10:24 PM »

Just noticed that this blog has over 700,000 views
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KZ3L
Member

Posts: 9




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« Reply #730 on: September 06, 2017, 10:50:58 AM »

I never anticipated running into the issues outlined in this thread. We moved in July to a home built four years ago, and I just tested a couple of antenna configurations on HF (random wire and a dipole).  Multiple breakers began to trip, even at 15 Watts on 40/20/15m.

That led me to this thread, the ARRL article, and other discussions, along with the discovery that I have the Eaton AFCIs in this house that were manufactured in Dec 2012. Bummer. My shack also happens to be located in a 1st-floor room directly above the electrical panel installed in the basement, so any stray RF is likely to find its way into the wiring.

Eaton referred me to a local distributor so I am attempting to get them to help me resolve this. I presume the 10-year warranty on these would lead Eaton to give me replacement breakers free of charge, wouldn't it? Is it also fair to assume I would be responsible for the installation of the new breakers?

Thanks for all the crossflow of information in this thread. And I hope and pray my neighbors aren't experiencing tripped AFCIs on my behalf!
« Last Edit: September 06, 2017, 10:54:26 AM by KZ3L » Logged
W5YZ
Member

Posts: 164




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« Reply #731 on: September 09, 2017, 10:57:18 AM »

Hi Kevin, Sorry to hear about your problem.  Please insist to Eaton that they pay for both the new breakers and the installation.  Notify Mike Gruber at the ARRL   mgruber@arrl.org  if they give you any trouble.
I had 14 homes affected by this problem.  I chose to talk to my neighbors and send them a letter explaining the problem.  Eaton replaced the breakers on my block along with the breakers in 28 houses that were affected by another ham in our neighborhood.  My letter:

Dear neighbor,
As you may know, I've been working to resolve a problem of defective Arc Fault Circuit Interrupts (AFCIs) that were installed in your power box when your house was built.  These AFCIs are vulnerable to Radio Frequency Interference (RFI) from various sources including my amateur radio transmissions.  Eaton Corporation, AFCI manufacturer, has agreed to replace these at no charge to you.  These new breakers should also reduce the incidence of nuisance tripping that is also associated with vacuum cleaners, treadmills and other appliances.

Eaton has tasked XYZ Electric to replace the ones in your box.  They will come by at your convenience.  You will need to contact John DOE to schedule the replacement.  His phone number is XXX_XXX_XXXX.

If possible, please let me know when they complete the installation.  The AFCIs should be the latest version.
This changeout will take about 45 minutes and you will be without power for that time.  XYZ Electric will take the old ones away.

Thanks in advance,
George Key
1042 Prairie Zinnia Drive
Bernalillo, NM


If you need any more help, just email me at  gskey(at)q(dot)com.

Good luck!
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W5YZ
Member

Posts: 164




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« Reply #732 on: September 09, 2017, 11:32:37 AM »

Kevin, is this a new house or neighborhood?  If so, it means that the installers still have the bad AFCIs on the shelf.
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KH6AQ
Member

Posts: 7718




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« Reply #733 on: September 09, 2017, 06:52:44 PM »

I would not call the AFCIs defective, but I would call them deficient.

Will the new (actually they are the HAM suffix verison) AFCIs really affect nuisance tripping?

I don't know that the AFCIs Eaton will install are the latest version, they are supposed to be a special HAM suffix version.
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W5YZ
Member

Posts: 164




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« Reply #734 on: September 10, 2017, 11:27:19 AM »

Hopefully we will hear something from Kevin
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