Why Does My Circuit Breaker Keep Tripping?

A man checking a tripped circuit breaker in a Simi Valley, CA.

If your circuit breaker keeps tripping, it’s easy to get frustrated. After all, what could be causing your power to constantly—and inconveniently—go out?

It’s essential to know what the circuit breaker in your home does. A circuit breaker, which is now the modern replacement for a fuse box, is essentially designed to shut off the power to your home after detecting a problem, such as too much electricity coursing through electrical circuits. These devices are crucial for your home safety, as they can help you avoid devastating electrical fires and electrocution.

There are three potential reasons why your breaker keeps tripping after a reset:

Reason #1: An Overloaded Circuit

If your circuit breaker keeps tripping, chances are you’re dealing with an overloaded circuit. Plugging too many things into one circuit—such as appliances, devices, and electronics—can cause the circuit to become overloaded. As a result, the circuit will trip, and you will lose power to that specific area of your home.

How To Prevent Circuit Overloads

When your breaker keeps tripping after it’s been reset due to a circuit overload, you should rethink how many devices you plug into that circuit. Consider keeping certain appliances unplugged when you’re not using them to avoid overwhelming the circuit. Alternatively, you might want to install a supplementary circuit and outlet along with an HVAC electric panel upgrade.

Reason #2: A Short Circuit

Short circuits occur when neutral wires and hot wires touch. When these wires touch, they create an overabundant flow of energy, which could be the reason why your breaker keeps tripping after resetting it. This problem can happen if you’re dealing with loose connections or damaged wires in places like electrical outlets and appliances.

How to Prevent Short-Circuiting

Short-circuiting is potentially to blame if your circuit breaker keeps tripping over and over. If you’re up to the task, check for signs of short circuits around your home. Common signs of short-circuiting can include strange discoloration around outlets and frayed power cords.

Nonetheless, short circuits can be highly dangerous. If you suspect short-circuiting is to blame for your circuit breaker problems, call a professional electrician for help.

Reason #3: A Ground Fault

The last potential reason your circuit breaker keeps tripping is that a ground fault has occurred. Ground faults are often the result of a hot wire touching a ground wire. When these two wires contact one another, they produce an extreme amount of electrical current, leading to the circuit breaker tripping.

How to Prevent Ground Faults

Do you think your breaker keeps tripping—even after resetting—because of a ground fault? You can avoid dangerous ground faults with Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (also known as GCFIs). 

These outlets, which are required in your home’s bathrooms and kitchen, can be easily purchased at your local home improvement store. When GCFIs detect a ground fault, they quickly cut your electrical power. While GCFIs can help if your circuit breaker keeps tripping, they will also help you avoid electrical shocks and fires.

Contact Us

Problems with electrical systems, including tripped circuit breakers, can negatively affect your home routine. If your breaker keeps tripping after resetting it and you don’t know why, turn to the experts at RR Electric. We can help with blow circuit breakers, wiring problems, and more. Contact us today!