General Question

myexpensereport's avatar

How do you track an electircal short in a bedroom that meets ARC grounding requirements?

Asked by myexpensereport (2points) August 28th, 2007

I have a one year old house and the lights stopped working in the bedroom. An electrican from the builder came out and said there was a short somewhere on the grounding side. He stated there was a new “ARC” grounding requirement in the last six years that was somewhat like a GFI grounding system. He checked all the switches and plugs on that one circuit in the bedroom as well as the breaker box and could not find where there wires touching causing the short. He stated that in order to find the short he would have to start cutting through walls to inspect wires! Instead he changed the breaker from a ARC type breaker to a non-breaker type and everything worked. My fear is now I have lost ARC feature that I paid for and now do not have it’s protection and do not meeting universal buidling code. The electrician felt it was a redundant ground system and I really didn’t need it. Is it that impossible to track shorts without tearing apart walls for a visual? Don’t you think I should pursue have it being done properly?

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2 Answers

woolval's avatar

First, let me state that I AM NOT an electrician. (although I’ve played one in my house on occasion) I would call the builder and let him know that HIS electrician has circumvented a building code requirement and you do not feel safe. Becuase it is a code requirement I feel that you should get it repaired properly. Make sure you document all communication (dates, names etc.) in case you need to escalate this in court. There should be ways to test each leg of the circuit for shorts without tearing up the walls. Once the shorted circuit is found they should run new wiring to replace that bad segment. Good luck, and document conversations with the builder!!

donok's avatar

yeah, I don’t understand what the electrician is saying. You should be able to find each end of a wire at a junction box, separate it from the circuit and determine if its ground is shorted. Now, once you find out which run of wire is shorting, you might have to then break into the walls and replace it. Hopefully it is a short run :-)

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