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AFCIs outlets and plug strips in a closet?
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justMongo Offline

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Post: #1
AFCIs outlets and plug strips in a closet?
This is way off the path of CPAP; and probably best in an electricians forum. But, I figure we have some knowledgeable people here.

I'm putting my surveillance camera recorder in a closet. I'm going to drop 12/2 w ground Romex cable down (inside the wall) from a 20 Amp branch circuit to an outlet. The outlet will be an Arc Fault Circuit Interrupter (AFCI) as required by code. I know this is to code as long as I observe the proper wiring techniques.

A plug strip will be plugged into the AFCI outlet. The plug strip has line filtering and overvoltage suppression.

I wonder if the filtering will interfere with the AFCI's ability to detect a fault? The purpose of an AFCI is to prevent fire from loose connections, frayed wires, et cetera.

Thoughts from you electrical folks? I'm a BSEE -- but have limited experience in house wiring.

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(This post was last modified: 09-15-2015 12:43 PM by justMongo.)
09-15-2015 12:40 PM
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Crimson Nape Offline

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Post: #2
RE: AFCIs outlets and plug strips in a closet?
I have never had a problem with using a setup as you described. The two devices are basicaly looking at two different animals.

I thought I'd throw this tidbit out as well. Never connect a surge suppressor to an UPS system. If you have a brownout or are a power loss, it can cause the power to resonate between the UPS and the surge protector causing the surge suppressor to seriously overheat and literately burn up.

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09-15-2015 01:39 PM
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surferdude2 Offline

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Post: #3
RE: AFCIs outlets and plug strips in a closet?
Not necessarily a hazard but some things to keep in mind about arc fault protected circuits: The things that usually cause nuisance tripping on AFCI protected circuits are motors with brushes (vacuum cleaners, hair dryers, etc), fluorescent lights, any other device with a mechanical thermostat (arcing points) and any device that contains neon or led lights, to include led displays. That is not to say these things always cause nuisance tripping but they are to be suspect when that occurs.

It won't hurt to try using your surge suppressor strip and UPS. If it works, not to worry. If it trips the AFCI, test again without the suppressor strip. I find evidence by Googling that that statement isn't true for all types of suppressor devices. From the evidence given, it seems that the low priced suppressors are more sociable to UPS units than the more elite units. Go figure. Given that, I'll say sgearhart's advice is best. Best to err on safe side.

In the cases I found, they were using a surge suppressor strip on the output of the UPS. Dubious application (I'd expect the UPS to absorb spikes) but I can see where that could be a possible problem if some spike got through the UPS and caused the MOV circuit in the strip to activate and essentially short the line to neutral. Then the UPS would attempt to keep the line output up to spec. which could damage it if it didn't have ample quick acting protection. Under certain conditions, it might continue pumping power to the clamped circuit until something (expensive) failed. It's not all that likely but possible so worth avoiding if possible. A simple non surge protected strip is best for that purpose.

Dude
(This post was last modified: 09-15-2015 05:53 PM by surferdude2.)
09-15-2015 02:37 PM
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justMongo Offline

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Post: #4
RE: AFCIs outlets and plug strips in a closet?
The ultimate load is 3 wall wart power supplies. Each supplies 12 VDC. Two supply the wire runs to the cameras. One supplies the DVR for the cameras.
So, it's a non-arcing light load. This is to be wall mounted then hidden by a plywood sheet with two 140mm 12V fans to circulate cooling air. The closet door will have a hidden magnetic switch to the alarm system. Oh, and two more items to be plugged in: The power cord to a flat screen LED backlit monitor and a wall wart to power the computer fans. An RJ-45 jack with a run of CAT-5 under the house will connect the DVR to one of the routers in the house for remote monitoring via internet.

INFORMATION ON APNEA BOARD FORUMS OR ON APNEABOARD.COM SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED AS MEDICAL ADVICE. ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF A PHYSICIAN BEFORE SEEKING TREATMENT FOR MEDICAL CONDITIONS, INCLUDING SLEEP APNEA. INFORMATION POSTED ON THE APNEA BOARD WEB SITE AND FORUMS ARE PERSONAL OPINION ONLY AND NOT NECESSARILY A STATEMENT OF FACT.
09-15-2015 04:32 PM
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