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Discuss Ground floor lighting trips out mcb in the Electrical Forum area at ElectrciansForums.co.uk.

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  1. Biggy
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    Biggy Active EF Member

    Location:
    Halifax
    Hi everyone,

    My first post but straight in with a couple of issues.

    I'll start with a 6amp MCB that keeps tripping out relating to ground floor lights.
    For your info:

    There is 10 x 3w led recessed lights in Kitchen, 8 x 3w led recessed lights ,plus a main central Led light (approx 100watt equivalent ) in the room next to the kitchen and then the same amount of lights and Main central light in the Back room. I would say the combined wattage including two outside lights (40watt each) will be around 480w so let's call it 500watt on the ground floor.

    From my understanding a 60w bulb draws around 0.5amp so in effect 30 of the 60w bulbs (around 1800watt combined ) would require a 15amp breaker which would be comfortable, so based on this theory is the 6amp MCB actually overload on 500watts on Ground floor and this tripping the breaker .

    The breaker does not trip immediately as can take 5-10mins sometimes longer, and in some instances it has tripped even when ground floor lights have been OFF.

    The joist spaces have all been insulated with rockwool if this makes any difference as I want to eliminate any possibility before I start questioning my electrician who advises that maybe I should fit a 15amp breaker in as he feels 6amp is less power for 30 odd lights .

    Can anyone shed LIGHT on this :)

    I'll come to the second issue after I can get a solution to this.

    Sorry for the lengthy explanation but I know there's nothing more frustrating than not arming knowledgeable people will full info and expecting solutions. Hope I've not missed anything out.

    Hope to get a few responses and guidance as I have basic understanding of electrics.

    Thanks
     
  2. telectrix
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    telectrix Scouser and Proud of It Respected Member

    Top Poster Of Month

    Location:
    cheshire/staffordshire
    Business Name:
    Telectrix
    your estimate of 1800 watts equates to 7.5 A. however, not all lights will be on at the same time. so a 6A MCB is fine. even with 7.5A, the 6A MCB will not trip in my lifetime. and a 60watt lamp draws according to P = VI. or I=P/V, so I = 60/240 = 0.25A.
     
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  3. littlespark
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    littlespark Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Scottish Borders
    I think you may have your sums wrong.
    6 amp breaker at a nominal 230v will take 230 x 6 which is 1380 Watts.
    Sounds like you don’t have that much.

    If it’s tripping without any lights on, then it sounds more like a short circuit than an overload situation.

    Your electrician should test the circuit with his test equipment.

    Replacing a 6A MCB with a 16A is the modern equivalent of replacing fuse wire with a nail.
     
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  4. telectrix
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    telectrix Scouser and Proud of It Respected Member

    Top Poster Of Month

    Location:
    cheshire/staffordshire
    Business Name:
    Telectrix
    upload_2018-12-27_21-32-20.jpeg
     
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  5. Biggy
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    Biggy Active EF Member

    Location:
    Halifax
    OK so I definitely have nowhere near 1380watts so 6amp should be fine from what I gather.

    The electrician used his friend to come and certify it off and does this mean there is a possibility the certificate has just been issued without really having a proper test done to check.
    Is there anything I can check myself to eliminate any basic problems first ?

    Should I stop him from putting a 15amp breaker in then ?

    Thanks
     
  6. anthonybragg
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    anthonybragg Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    NORTHAMPTON
    Business Name:
    CHARLTEC ELECTRICAL LTD
    Based upon the above I would recommend an electrician does an insulation resistance test you have either a short circuit or earth fault.
     
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  7. Biggy
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    Biggy Active EF Member

    Location:
    Halifax
    I have the domestic electrical installation certificate . Is there anywhere on this I can check what I need to look for with what he has written down ?
     
  8. camerabloke
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    camerabloke Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Northampton
    Outside lights check for water ingress. Have you had any work done lately. Hung pictures put a shelf up etc?
     
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  9. littlespark
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    littlespark Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Scottish Borders
    The problem could be with so many LED lamps, he’s maybe tested it with the switches off, to protect the lamps from the test voltage.
    However if there’s a fault after the switch, he’s missed it.

    The other question is.... are you sure it is an mcb? It might be an RCBO... trips off under a different type of fault.
    Can you photograph the mcb in question and post it to the thread here?

    You could scan in the certificate and post it here, but you would have to block out any identifying information of you or your electrician (or his friend)
     
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  10. anthonybragg
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    anthonybragg Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    NORTHAMPTON
    Business Name:
    CHARLTEC ELECTRICAL LTD
    Why do I get the feeling that the whole story has not been posted that said and put aside, you have told us the full loading the fact that it is tripping out after a short time and the circuit breaker is 6A.
    Is this a new or newly rewired circuit?
    What is tripping out the 6A circuit breaker RCBO or RCD (photo would be helpful)
    As posted if it is tripping out with no lights switched on some testing needs to take place.
     
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  11. anthonybragg
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    anthonybragg Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    NORTHAMPTON
    Business Name:
    CHARLTEC ELECTRICAL LTD
    Very vocal on the forum at last Camerabloke.
     
  12. camerabloke
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    camerabloke Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Northampton
    Yes ant. Nice to see you
     
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  13. anthonybragg
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    anthonybragg Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    NORTHAMPTON
    Business Name:
    CHARLTEC ELECTRICAL LTD
    Yes, there are columns referring to installation resistance if not sure post a copy and we can point it out to you.
     
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  14. littlespark
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    littlespark Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Scottish Borders
    Just a side note. OP mention recent addition of thermal insulation.
    This can decrease the current carrying captivity of the cable, but not to the extent of creating a problem like this.

    It can also cause damage to cables by removing and relaying boards to access between the joists.

    There can be a dozen or so reasons why this is happening, but I think all the pros on here agree that sticking in a 16A isn’t the answer.
     
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  15. anthonybragg
    Offline

    anthonybragg Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    NORTHAMPTON
    Business Name:
    CHARLTEC ELECTRICAL LTD
    Going back to your first post are the LED downlights the type with the driver as part of the fitting? as putting insulation over these (unless they are the type designed to take insulation covering) may be overheating the driver and giving a short.
     
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