Question about Square D QO115GFI QO Circuit Breaker

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QO115GFI breaker trips when I switch on the breaker next to it.

Problem with Square D QO115GFI QO Circuit Breaker I installed a qo115gif breaker in my residential panel, everytime I switch on the breaker next to it, the gif breaker trips. If the breaker next to it is off, the GFI breaker works fine. They are on separate circuits in the house. The GFI breaker is only affected by one other breaker in the panel. Any information would be greatly appreciated. Thank you very much.

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  • Bill Hon Feb 28, 2012

    Thank you very much for your advice on my QO115GFI problem. I did

    switch out the breaker next to the GFI breaker (the one causing the

    QO115GFI to trip is directly below the GFI breaker and on the other

    phase) with a new breaker and the problem still exists.

    I think you're correct about two hots sharing a neutral as the wires

    leading to the two breakers in question appear to becoming out of the

    same romex.

    Can I assume if I change the wiring in the panel so the GFI breaker is

    sharing a neutral with a breaker on the same phase-side, I'll cause a

    fire because the neutral is seeing twice the return current it should?

    And if I simply move the other hot wire that's sharing the neutral with

    the GFI breaker to another breaker on the other phase-side, I'll still

    have the same problem just from another breaker?

    Does this mean rewiring the entire circuit I'm attempting to protect

    with the GFI Breaker with a new neutral?

    What started this whole mess is that I'm dealing with aluminum romex

    and I can't find GFI recepticles rated for aluminum wire and I don't

    have the training or certification to safely bond aluminum and copper

    wire.

    Sorry for the long answer. Thank you again for all your expertise!

  • Coaltowner Feb 28, 2012

    Hi Bill,
    You're correct in your two assumptions regarding the perils of moving the shared-neutral wire around in the breaker box: doubling return current or just moving the problem.
    The part that troubles me is that you're dealing with aluminum wiring! Used a a cheaper alternative to copper in the 60's & early 70's, it has become outlawed due to burning down many a house. The main culprits of this is galvanic reaction when joined to copper, causing oxidation & higher resistance at the joints, and thermal "creep"; the high expansion & contraction of aluminum wire causes weakening and a pronounced tendency to work loose at splices & terminal connections. Plus, there's probably no safety ground wire in that old romex





























    Hi Bill,
    You're correct in your assumptions that moving your shared neutral circuit around will either cause higher current or simply move the problem. A GFCI contains a comparitor circuit, comparing the current on the hot to the current returning on the neutral. A difference of approx. 6 milliamps or greater causes the GFCI to trip. That's why the shared neutral setup won't work.
    What concerns me is the aluminum wiring, which was outlawed in the 70's because it burned down too many houses. The main culprits with aluminum is thermal creep-it expands & contracts more than copper due to it's higher resistance, and loosens at crimps, splices, and terminations. It is more fragile, nicks more easily when stripped, and oxidizes where exposed to air. Plus there's no safety ground in that old romex! The best, safest thing that you can do is replace the aluminum with copper and not share the neutral with another circuit. There is a product called Ox-guard, which is meant to be used on freshly-bared aluminum before termination at mechanical connections, such as aluminum service wire from the meter to the panel main lugs, which is about the only place you'll find aluminum conductors. It is recommended to NOT attempt to join aluminum to copper or devices, even with wire nuts, **** splices or the like.
    Sorry for the long comment! Good luck!







    1
    The best and safest thing that you can do to utilize your expensive GFCI breaker is to replace the circuit with copper, using its own, unshared neutral. Articles that I just read on the "Net" recommends against using wire nuts for copper to aluminum splices. There is a product called Ox-guard that is made to coat the cleaned ends of aluminum to protect from oxidation where terminations are made. About the only place where you will see aluminum used is the conductors from your electric company's transformer to your meter, and perhaps to the main lugs of the panel box.

  • Coaltowner Feb 28, 2012

    The best, safest thing that you can do is replace the aluminum with copper and not share the neutral with another circuit. There is a product called Ox-guard, which is meant to be used on freshly-bared aluminum before termination at mechanical connections, such as aluminum service wire from the meter to the panel main lugs, which is about the only place you'll find aluminum conductors. It is recommended to NOT attempt to join aluminum to copper or devices. Sorry for the long comment! Good luck!

  • Coaltowner Feb 28, 2012

    The best, safest thing that you can do is replace the aluminum with copper and not share the neutral with another circuit. There is a product called Ox-guard, which is meant to be used on freshly-bared aluminum before termination at mechanical connections, such as aluminum service wire from the meter to the panel main lugs, which is about the only place you'll find aluminum conductors. It is recommended to NOT attempt to join aluminum to copper or devices.

  • Coaltowner Feb 28, 2012

    The best, safest thing that you can do is replace the aluminum with copper and not share the neutral with another circuit. There is a product called Ox-guard, which is meant to be used on freshly-bared aluminum before termination at mechanical connections, such as aluminum service wire from the meter to the panel main lugs, which is about the only place you'll find aluminum conductors. It is recommended to NOT attempt to join aluminum to copper or devices.

  • Coaltowner Feb 28, 2012

    The best, safest thing that you can do is replace the aluminum with copper and not share the neutral with another circuit. There is a product called Ox-guard, which is meant to be used on freshly-bared aluminum before termination at mechanical connections, such as aluminum service wire from the meter to the panel main lugs, which is about the only place you'll find aluminum conductors. It is recommended to NOT attempt to join aluminum to copper or devices.

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  • Master
  • 963 Answers

I happen to have one of these in the box, so I've reviewed the installation & on-line literature for this model. Let's address installation notes:
Don't connect more than 250 ft of load conductor for the total one-way run, to prevent nuisance tripping.
The breaker is to be used on grounded power supply circuits only. We're talking a properly-grounded breaker box, not just the protected circuit.
Look at the side of the breaker. You will notice that the curly white wire is meant to be connected to the (properly grounded) neutral bar in your panel.
The circuit neutral that you're protecting should be landed on the terminal just above that curly wire. Make sure you have the right neutral!
The circuit's hot wire would of course be landed on the topmost screw.
You did not state what you mean by "the breaker next to it": just above, just below, or directly across from the GFI breaker?
I suspect that you meant just above or below the GFI breaker. And I assume you've swapped out other breakers to rule out a defective breaker.
Now, it is possible that you have a "shared neutral" situation. It's a common wiring practice to use one neutral wire for two "hots", where one circuit is fed from the phase A side and the other is fed from the phase B side, (which you'll have in a two-pole, 220V breaker), picking up a 110 volts from each phase. The two 110v "Hots" share a single neutral wire between them to carry return current. The phase shift between the two phases allows this.
However, to avoid nuisance tripping of your GFI, your protected circuit cannot share neutrals with another circuit, as the "other" circuit's operation will cause the 6 milliamp differential between current out (hot) and current return (neutral) which the GFI by design senses and trips.
Your GFI-protected circuit probably needs its own dedicated neutral!
I'd like to hear what you find. Good luck!

Posted on Feb 24, 2012

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if you have another breaker, try installing another one.(i have gotten bad ones from new all ready). if you dont have another breaker, disconnect or unplug what ever is controlled by that breaker. if it still does it while everything is unplugged/disconnected, there is a short in the line.

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SOURCE: I need a 15A GFI

That number in the heading is not correct. While you might find a breaker that "fits" your panel there is no other brand that is listed to work with your panel The correct number would be

HOM115GFICP If you can't find it locally, there are many locations you can order one from online. I don't know where you are locatged, but an electrical supply house or even homedepot should have one.

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SOURCE: I have a square D

A shunt trip breaker operation.

It works just like a normal circuit breaker with one additional function. A shunt-trip breaker also has a built-in magnetic coil that can be energized externally to trip the breaker.


So what is wired to the shunt that is not letting the breaker reset?


Read more: http://wiki.answers.com/Q/How_does_a_shunt_trip_breaker_work#ixzz1EXNCP5r0

Posted on Feb 20, 2011

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It may or may not, depending on the root cause of the GFI tripping. If the GFI is faulty (which does happen) then yes. However if you have a problem with the motor or the circuit to the motor then you will still have issues and the GFI was doing it's job.
Since you already purchased one go ahead and install it and see if it works then go from there.
Good luck

Posted on Jun 16, 2011

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