Root Electric FAQ - Microwave Tripping The Circuit Breaker. www.rootelectric.com/electrical-repairs/electrical-service-upgrades.html
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Transcription of FAQ Video:
Well, hello. I'm Bill Root, with Root Electric, and this is the first in our FAQ series. Today I'd like to talk about microwaves. I get a lot of calls from microwaves, and it always happens in a certain scenario. It's meal time of course, and what you wanna do is put your favorite kinda little soup, or snack into the microwave. Of course, you close the door. Turn it on, and you just think about what you're gonna be having, and, Oh, everything shuts down. Well, let's see what happened. Now, the microwave is not on anymore. The clock is off. And then, when I open the door, the light turned off, too. Well, let's see. I check the plug above the microwave, and it's still plugged in. You know, did you notice that the the lights turned off too, at the same time. Well, let's go check the electrical panel. Come on with me.
Okay. So, here we are right down here in the basement, and here's the electrical panel. So, let's open it up, and see what's happened. Alright. So here's all of our circuit breakers. Now, what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna start at the top, and I'm gonna work my way down, and look for anything unusual. So let's see here. Alright. So everything looks normal there . All those look normal. Set as it should. Okay, so right down here at the bottom we have a tripped breaker. Now, let's see what it says here on the panel schedule. Now, let's see. Now, that's breaker number 30. Now, over here space number 30. It says, "Kitchen lighting." That's interesting. It doesn't say anything about a microwave. Well, the truth is, this is a very common occurrence. And what happened was that originally in this kitchen rather than having a microwave, there was a range hood that served as an exhaust for cooking fumes.
Well, what happened down the road was is either a previous home owner, or this home owner decide to install a microwave in that place. Now, the big difference between a range hood and a microwave is that a range hood maybe pulls one or two amps, whereas a microwave pulls 12 amps, which is many times that of a range hood. So, what happens is as you turn on that microwave, and it starts competing with everything else that's on that circuit, including your lighting, or anything in the nearby rooms. So what happens? Boom, the circuit trips, and all of a sudden you're not sitting down to your meal, when you thought you would. So, we have a very easy fix for this scenario, and what we do is we go ahead and install a dedicated 20 amp microwave circuit.
So, to do that we install a new circuit breaker in your electrical panel, and then we run a wire from
your electrical panel into your kitchen, and then into the cabinet above the microwave. And then the microwave gets plugged into that outlet. So that's the fix. One thing I would like to add concerning this is that the microwave is required to be installed on a dedicated 20 amp circuit as per the National Electrical Code.
So if you have a situation where your microwave is on the lighting circuit, this may become an issue when you try to sell your house. A home inspector may pick up on this, and might be something you might have to fix anyway. So, if you're having problems with your microwave, and it is tripping the circuit when you're running it, or if you suspect that it might be on the
lighting circuit, this is an excellent upgrade to consider for your house. So, thank you very much for visiting. I'm Bill Root with Root Electric. We keep you grounded.
Voila I'm Belle root with root electric, and this is the first in our FAQ series today.
I would like to talk about microwaves, I get a lot of calls from microwaves and it always happens in a certain scenario.
It's Meal Time, of course, and what you want to do is put your favorite kind of little soup or snack into the microwave.
Of course, you close the door turn it on and you just think about what you're going to be having in Oh everything shuts down.
Well, let's see what happened now, the microwave is not on the clock is off then, when I open the door, the light turned off too well.
Let's see I check the plug above the microwave and it's still plugged in and hmm you know, did you notice that the lights turned off too? At the same time? Hmm? Well, let's go check.
The electrical panel come on with me, okay, so here we are right down here in the basement and here's the electrical panel.
So let's open it up and see, what's happened, alright, so here's all of our circuit breakers.
Now what I'm going to do is I'm going to start at the top and I'm going to work.
My way down, look for anything unusual.
So, let's see here alright, so everything looks normal there.
All those look normal and set, as it should.
Ah, okay, so right down here at the bottom, we have a tripped breaker.
Now, let's see what it says here on the panel schedule now, that's that's breaker number 30 over here space number 30, it says kitchen lighting, hmm, that's interesting! It doesn't say anything about a microwave.
Well, the truth is this is a very common occurrence and what happened was is originally in this.
Rather than having a microwave.
There was a range hood that served as an exhaust for cooking fumes.
Well, what happened down the road was: is either a previous homeowner or this homeowner decided to install a microwave in that place.
Now the big difference between a range hood and a microwave is that a range hood may be pulls one or two Apes, whereas a microwave pulls 12 aims, which is many times that of a range hood.
So what happens is? Is you turn on that microwave and it starts competing with everything else, that's on that circuit, including your lighting or anything in the nearby rooms.
So what happens boom the circuit trips and all the sudden you're not sitting down to your meal when you thought you would so we have a very easy fix for this scenario and what we do is we go ahead and install a dedicated, 20 and microwave circuit.
So to do that, we installed a new circuit breaker in your electrical panel, and then we run a wire from your electrical panel into your kitchen and then into the cabinet above the microwave, and then the microwave gets plugged into that outlet.
So that's the fix.
One thing I would like to add concerning this is that the microwave is required to be installed on a dedicated 20 amp circuit, as per the National Electrical Code.
So if you have a situation where your microwave is on the lighting circuit, this may become an issue when you try to sell your house.
A home inspector may pick up on this, and it might be something you might have to fix anyway.
So, if you're having problems with your microwave and it is tripping the serpent when you're running it or if you suspect that might be on the lighting circuit, this is an excellent upgrade to consider for your house.
So thank you very much for visiting I'm bill root with route electric.
There are two possible causes of why the microwave keeps tripping the circuit breaker: The microwave is not functioning properly and is pulling too much electrical current. Too many electrical appliances are plugged into the same circuit.What to do if an appliance keeps tripping the breaker? ›
Call an appliance technician or electrician to rectify the appliance. Check for faults in the wiring and electricity supply: The trip switch will have a reset or 'push to test' button. Push this button. If the switch trips again, there is likely a fault with the electrical wiring in the house.Can you plug a microwave into a regular outlet? ›
The microwaves require a 120 volt, individual, properly grounded branch circuit with a 3 prong grounding type receptacle protected by a 15 or 20 amp circuit breaker or time-delay fuse. Over-the-Range microwave models should always be on a dedicated circuit.Can a microwave share a breaker? ›
Microwave ovens often demand dedicated circuits, but it will depend on the wattage of the unit and whether the microwave is built-in or a stand-alone countertop design. The National Electrical Code requires one for fixed equipment, so a circuit must be set aside for any built-in oven or microwave.Should I be worried if my breaker keeps tripping? ›
Don't ignore a circuit breaker that keeps tripping. This is a sign that one of your circuits is getting overloaded on a regular basis. Your circuits are only able to handle up to a certain level of voltage. Beyond this voltage, you run the risk of starting an electrical fire.How many times can a breaker trip? ›
How many times can a circuit breaker be turned on and off? With 100 amp or less circuit breakers they are tested to operate 6000 times at rated current and 4000 times no current i.e. 10,000 times operating, they will most likely never see as much operation as they do.What is the most common reason for a circuit breaker to trip? ›
The most common cause of a tripped circuit breaker is an overload in that circuit. Each circuit is only intended to carry a certain electrical load, and if it exceeds this load, it will cause the breaker to trip.
Appliances, such as microwaves, often have 20-amp plugs and must be plugged into a 20-amp outlet. Electrical plugs designated as 20-amp will not fit into 15-amp outlets. A 15-amp circuit is usually served by 14-gauge wire and is protected by a 15-amp circuit breaker or fuse.Does a microwave need a dedicated 20 amp circuit? ›
Microwave Oven Circuit
The microwave oven needs a dedicated 20-amp, the 120/125-volt circuit to feed it. This will require 12/2 NM wire with a ground. Microwave ovens come in different varieties and sizes. Some are countertop models, and other microwaves mount above the stove.
In the 2023 NEC, most dishwashers, electric ranges, wall-mounted ovens, microwave ovens, and counter-mounted cooking units will require GFCI protection.
A microwave plugged into a 15-amp circuit could cause the wires in the wall to overheat and present a fire hazard. More likely, however, the microwave will trip the 15-amp breaker and pose a regular nuissance. Note that you should never just replace a 15-amp breaker with a 20-amp breaker.Will a microwave trip a GFCI? ›
If the breaker trips even when you plug your microwave into a GFCI outlet, it is possible that the outlet itself is faulty. If the GFCI outlet continues to trip even after resetting, it indicates a fault or something else in the circuit is causing the problem. Try plugging in the microwave to another GFCI outlet.Can an appliance cause a breaker to trip? ›
Your appliances are faulty – Sometimes a faulty appliance (even something simple like a hair dryer, toaster, or lamp) can cause a circuit to trip over and over again. This issue is usually easy to diagnose, and the best way to get rid of the problem is to replace the appliance!What are the signs of a bad breaker? ›
- Noticing blinking or flickering lights inside your home.
- Experiencing poor performance or interruptions with appliances.
- Regularly replacing light bulbs since they're quickly burning out.
- Smelling an electrical burning odor originating from your panel.
Open the cover on the consumer unit to see which switches have tripped to the OFF position. Put them back to the ON position. If tripping occurs again, it is probably being caused by a faulty appliance. You need to identify which circuit is affected and which appliance on that circuit is causing the problem.How can you tell if your breaker is bad? ›
- Won't Stay in Reset Mode. If the breaker doesn't stay in “reset” mode, it may be short-circuiting. ...
- Notice a Burning Smell. ...
- It Feels Hot. ...
- Damage Is Visible To the Box or Outlets. ...
- Frequent Breaker Trips. ...
- It's Old.
Remember, repeatedly resetting a breaker could result in an arc flash or a fire. If the circuit is not overloaded and the breaker trips after one attempt at resetting it, leave it in the tripped state. It is essential that you contact a professional electrician to determine the source of the problem.Can a breaker go bad after tripping? ›
The simple answer is that, YES, circuit breakers can go bad, so your suspicions may be well-founded. Just like any other essential device in your home (e.g. your water heater, HVAC system, etc.), circuit breakers can quit working properly. That said, don't begin replacing your circuit breaker just yet.How many times can you trip a breaker before it should be replaced? ›
An electrician is coming to replace the cutoff (containing fuses) with a simple lever cutoff. In discussing this he said that a circuit breaker should not be allowed to trip more than 4 or 5 times before being replaced.Can a tripped breaker cause a fire? ›
When a circuit breaker trips, too much electricity is trying to move through the circuit at once, causing the circuit breaker to literally break the circuit. Too much electricity passing through a circuit can overheat the electrical wiring in your home or electrical devices, which can cause a fire or electrocution.
Circuit Breaker Switch Replacement
Replacing a circuit breaker switch costs between $100 and $200, including parts and labor. Standard 15- to 20-amp circuit breaker switches cost $5 to $15 each, and larger 20-amp switches cost $10 to $20 each.
- Disconnect the microwave from the power source.
- Remove the relevant access panel. ...
- Unscrew or unclip the fuse and remove it from the microwave.
- Test the fuse with a multimeter for continuity.
- If defective, replace the fuse with a new one that matches the fuse you removed.
It's easy to tell if a glass fuse is blown; it will show scorch marks, and the filament will be melted. To check a ceramic fuse, use an ohmmeter or continuity tester. With an ohmmeter or multimeter, you should see a reading close to zero ohms if the fuse is intact, or infinite if it's blown.How much does it cost to replace a microwave fuse? ›
Microwave Fuse Replacement
Replacing a microwave fuse costs between $10 and $15. This repair issue is often a simple fix, but if you plan on using an appliance repair person, your costs could increase to $50 to $100.
Test for overloaded circuits by resetting your breaker and plugging in devices until it trips again. The device that caused the trip is overloading the circuit. Test for short circuits by resetting your breaker and plugging in items into different sockets.Do circuit breakers need to be replaced when they trip? ›
The Breaker Trips When You Plug in a Specific Appliance
In this case, you'll have to replace your circuit breaker panel or the circuit before a fire occurs. You may also need to replace some of your home's wiring.