Southeastern, PA

Circuit Breaker


Walton's Electric offers circuit breaker installation services, as well as other electrical panel replacement and repair, to both commercial and residential buildings.  Circuit breakers are designed to interrupt the power to a circuit and protect your wiring, therefore, when they need to be fixed, or replaced, it is best to look to the expert electricians at Walton's Electric.  Our experienced engineers and technicians provide a comprehensive range of services for circuit breakers, switchgear, and other electrical equipment.

When your home or office building is a couple to a few decades old, your electrical panel and circuit breakers are usually around the same age.  There are many reasons your electrical panel or breakers may need replacement and if you have the ability to update your wiring, it is better to do it sooner than later.  Aside from personal safety concerns, disregarding an electrical problem or choosing a risky DIY alternative could cause damage to your computers, TV’s and other electronic devices

Circuit Breaker
The Main Panel

Your Main panel controls all the power to your house and is the most used piece of electrical equipment that you have.  Anything that runs on electricity in your home or office draws its power through this single point.  As a result, there is a lot of stress on the components of the panel and all connection points are susceptible to a faulty connection after time.

Secondary & Sub-Panels
The second most used piece of electrical equipment are your load center sub panels, or breaker panels.  This has all the additional circuits of the house going to it and is connected by breakers.  Faulty connections over time produce the need for the panel and/or individual breakers to be replaced.

When circuit breakers and electrical panels stop working, it can be a challenge to find the necessary replacement part, but Walton's can help you find the best quality new, used, and obsolete circuit breakers, motor starters, transfer switches, motor controls, transformers and other electrical hardware – and get it fixed safely and quickly.

Why a Circuit Breaker Trips

Circuit breakers trip for one of two reasons, a short circuit or an overloaded circuit. A short circuit being the simplest to explain and the hardest to repair and an overloaded circuit being relatively easy to explain and easier to fix.

A breaker is designed to regulate the amount of amperage a wire can safely carry. This is why most 110 volt circuits in your home are wired with 12 Gage wire and placed on a 20 amp breaker. Quite possibly your home could be wired on 14 gage wire and a 15 amp breaker. One could place a 15 amp breaker on the 12 gage wire a swell but you can NEVER place a 20 amp breaker on 14 gage wire.

See, wire has a rated ampacity that it can carry and 12/20 and 14,15 are the maximum for each circuit. This is what is violated when a circuit breaker trips.

In a short circuit the hot wire is broken or possibly just has the insulation worn enough to make contact with a ground. When this happens this direct short causes the amperage to increase coming through the breaker and when the amperage is higher than the rating on the breaker the breaker trips. When you try and reset the breaker it will trip right back off. Repairing this situation requires someone with electrical knowledge or hire an electrician. Electricity is dangerous so don't play around with it. It takes less than one amp to kill someone.

The other reason a circuit breaker trips is because of overloading the circuit. As I have stated a circuit has a breaker protecting the wire it is served by. If this is 12/20 then 20 amps is the maximum for the circuit. So, you plug in a hair dyer that is rated at 1500 watts and decide you better let the 1500 watt curling iron heat up. Now, a simple calculation watts divided by voltage gives amps. So, 3000/120=25amps. Your circuit is overloaded and will trip. Plug only one item in at a time or find another circuit for the curling iron!

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