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  1. #66
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Abram View Post
    .....This clearly supports the Insurance Companies position.......
    Since you have read through the entire report. Where is the supporting data. Help me cut to the chase. ...... Thanks

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  2. #67
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Thought this " https://www.nfpa.org/~/media/Files/R...ricalFires.pdf " looked familiar. I did not find reference to Fuse Panel related statistics. Please point it out if it is there.

    What I did find that is interesting and may only support that it is the the person that is the the problem and not the the equipment. There is a back handed reference to economic status and fires as they relate to house age and frequency of fire. Older houses have higher frequency of fires with an assertion that there are higher numbers of lower income/less affluent occupants of older homes.

    From page 35 of report:
    When studies show higher fire risk generally for older homes, it is usually because the studies have not controlled for the risk levels associated with occupants

    Statistically, older homes have a higher proportion of occupants who are poor or have other risk factors

    NFPAs annual study of variations in state fire death rates is one of the few studies of risk factors where the statistical link between older homes and higher risk occupants is broken.9 This is because several states (like Vermont and Connecticut) have large shares of older, expensive homes with affluent occupants.


  3. #68
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Thanks for posting that link Garry. That is the report I was thinking of.

    All answers based on unamended National Electrical codes.

  4. #69
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    Exclamation Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    I have received several "Reports" on this thread.

    Lets get back to the topic and leave the personal stuff out of it.

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  5. #70
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Post #64
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Abram View Post
    Raymond - You asked for the data .Find it posted below. https://www.nfpa.org/~/media/Files/Research/NFPA%20reports/Major%20Causes/OSHomeElectricalFires.pdf

    This clearly supports the Insurance Companies position..........
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Port View Post
    Thanks for posting that link Garry. That is the report I was thinking of.
    The link to the report is from Jim Adams. I had looked at it early in the discussion relative to fuse box failure or something supporting the view that it is the equipment that has failed and reasoning behind beyond serviceable life and being a hazard. I didn't find anything differentiating between fuses and breakers as causes for fires. So I didn't bring it to the discussion. Jim Abram used it as support for his argument, though I still can not find what Jim seems to feel is supportive of his views/positions.

    So the credit for the report link is all Jim's.

    {{{{ Jim A,, still would like you to point out specifically where in the report your accretions "clearly supports the Insurance Companies position" are supported }}}}

    Last edited by Garry Sorrells; 04-10-2014 at 07:28 PM.

  6. #71
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    There is less likelyhood of something to fail in a fuse panel than the breaker which contains mechanical parts.

    What part of the fuse panel would wear out? Are the electrons degrading the bus?

    All answers based on unamended National Electrical codes.

  7. #72
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Port View Post
    There is less likelyhood of something to fail in a fuse panel than the breaker which contains mechanical parts.

    What part of the fuse panel would wear out?
    The 60 year old insulation on the branch circuits wiring and loosing of their connections.

    It Might have Choked Artie But it ain't gone'a choke Stymie! Our Gang " The Pooch " (1932)
    Billy J. Stephens HI Service Memphis TN.

  8. #73
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Quote Originally Posted by Billy Stephens View Post
    The 60 year old insulation on the branch circuits wiring and loosing of their connections.
    That would or could also happen in a breaker panel. Changing the panel does not change the deterioration of the insulation.

    All answers based on unamended National Electrical codes.

  9. #74
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Port View Post
    That would or could also happen in a breaker panel. Changing the panel does not change the deterioration of the insulation.
    So How Many 60 year old Breaker Panels have you seen?
    *of those what percentage would / did you recommend for replacement?

    It Might have Choked Artie But it ain't gone'a choke Stymie! Our Gang " The Pooch " (1932)
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  10. #75
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Quote Originally Posted by Garry Sorrells View Post
    {{{{ Jim A,, still would like you to point out specifically where in the report your accretions "clearly supports the Insurance Companies position" are supported }}}}
    In case you have forgotten the link that you provided:

    https://www.nfpa.org/~/media/Files/Research/NFPA%20reports/Major%20Causes/OSHomeElectricalFires.pdf

    Or are you now reversing your position on Serviceable Life and Hazard of fuses.

    Or are you falling back on secrete reports and data that are not available to the public? If it is governmental it is available under the freedom of information act. Or are they located in Area 51???


  11. #76
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Round and round we go....


  12. #77

    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    As someone said above, we go round and round.

    I think we all agree if during the course of our inspection we see something that is worn, damaged or defective for any reason we report it, explaining what we see, why it is or could be a problem and advise what to do about it.

    It seems where there is some disagreement over when we try to predict the future.

    If we see frayed insulation on a wire we predict that this could (but may never) cause a shock hazard or fire.

    But, what if the wire is not frayed, it's just old but with no visible defects, do we make the same prediction?

    PS: I am just using wire as an example not a source of topic drift.


  13. #78
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Like many others that participate in this forum I look at what verification posters use in supporting their statements. Many people read the contributions made in the forum and often rely on it. SO as to not leave a dangling string in the thread.

    Again, discussing the service life and hazard of the equipment, Fuse Box and Fuses, itself not how people may use it. Not referring to damaged equipment, nor how people may adapt or alter equipment to serve their purpose. Also, not discussing articles that have no supportive references for their opinions expressed.

    Jim,
    Not to beat a dead horse, but many people will reference statistics, reports, data or code to clarify and to specify where they find authority for their statements. If you were wrong in using your reference please just say so. If you have no supportive source for a position or argument other than others that have nothing to support their position just say so. Throwing something out, hoping that it will stick is not good.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Abram View Post
    Raymond - You asked for the data .Find it posted below. https://www.nfpa.org/~/media/Files/Research/NFPA%20reports/Major%20Causes/OSHomeElectricalFires.pdf

    This clearly supports the Insurance Companies position.

    The report that you posted did not did not have any data to prove or support any of your contentions.

    I find it bizarre that you believe that fuse panels do not wear out. Any one with even a basic amount of education on electricity understands that all electrical equipment deteriorates with use and eventually wears out.
    The fact that it is becoming difficult to obtain Insurance on a property with a fused panel should be enough reason to inform a client that that may be an issue. The Insurance Companies are denying coverage for a reason. Think about it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Garry Sorrells View Post
    Since you have read through the entire report. Where is the supporting data. Help me cut to the chase. ...... Thanks
    Quote Originally Posted by Garry Sorrells View Post
    Post #64

    The link to the report is from Jim Adams. I had looked at it early in the discussion relative to fuse box failure or something supporting the view that it is the equipment that has failed and reasoning behind beyond serviceable life and being a hazard. I didn't find anything differentiating between fuses and breakers as causes for fires. So I didn't bring it to the discussion. Jim Abram used it as support for his argument, though I still can not find what Jim seems to feel is supportive of his views/positions.

    So the credit for the report link is all Jim's.

    {{{{ Jim A,, still would like you to point out specifically where in the report your accretions "clearly supports the Insurance Companies position" are supported }}}}
    Silence may be golden and in that silence I will have to assert that declaring equipment based on age is beyond its serviceable life and is a hazard is false concept. Like breakers, fuses seem to have an indefinite service life and, in and of themselves, no hazard.


  14. #79
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Before we fully embrace this If It Ain't Broke Don't Fix It.
    *most of us are not qualified to determine the Finial Say.

    The folks over at Mike Holt electrical panel life span appear to subscribe to "If in Doubt Change It Out."

    Last edited by Billy Stephens; 04-19-2014 at 09:04 AM. Reason: spelling change
    It Might have Choked Artie But it ain't gone'a choke Stymie! Our Gang " The Pooch " (1932)
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  15. #80
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    But is the chance of an incident due to aging and deterioration in the insulation or is it from components of the system wearing out and failing? Would an older house become instantly safer just by installing a 100 amp service and a breaker panel when nothing is done to split any load off the fewer circuits than it was with fuses? How would the breakers make a safety improvement over fuses since the wiring would still have the same insulation?

    All answers based on unamended National Electrical codes.

  16. #81
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Once again cutting and pasting from a non CPSC site without referencing a source is not going to fly.

    http://www.cpsc.gov//PageFiles/102851/technolopt1.pdf

    Introduction page 1

    While some of these factors do not cause fires by themselves, combinations of these factors increase the likelihood of a potentially unsafe situation being exacerbated. Eventually, these factors can lead to electrical overheating and/or arching faults that can cause fires.


    Attached Files Attached Files

  17. #82
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Yes and you still cut and paste without referencing the article.
    That report whether current or not still clarifies the facts you portray as accurate without qualifying the conditions.

    This what happens when you try to fudge facts as being accurate.


  18. #83
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Abram;[B
    ......[/B] If you read the report and data it becomes evident that there is a higher risk of electrical fires with older equipment.
    Reading the report provides the same basic information as the report you first sited. Yet both reports do not site that the issue is the service panel and its components, being either fuse or breaker, which are the cause of the fires or deaths. There is reference to many things that attribute to the causes of fires other than the age of the fuse or breaker. Or which was in use at the time of the fire.

    As I pointed out there was a reference to the fact of income as a factor leading to fire risk. In Mass. Expensive old homes have fewer fires than low value older homes. Making a potential correlation that more affluent people make the difference in home age as it relates to the potential fire. Which just takes it back to the people factor and away from the equipment.

    Again the report statement that you site is more anecdotal and opinion (http://www.cpsc.gov//PageFiles/102851/technolopt1.pdf ). Furthermore the CPSC report first posts a notice that you can not rely on anything that is in the report and they can not be held accountable for what is written. Putting that notice aside, the question again is where is there any data based report that puts Fuses beyond serviceable life and are a hazard by design and function? The report was about testing breakers.

    The CSPC may possibly be using https://www.nfpa.org/~/media/Files/Research/NFPA%20reports/Major%20Causes/OSHomeElectricalFires.pdf as a source for their comment, yet it is not sited and we do not know. Even if that is the source of their opinion it still does not site a non damaged fuse box as beyond its serviceable life and is a hazard.

    So I am still hearing the silence.....

    Last edited by Garry Sorrells; 04-19-2014 at 09:04 AM.

  19. #84
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Your cut and paste stated in part -
    Residences Wired in the 1960s or Earlier
    According to the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission, homes over 40 years of age


    The article I found (link above) and which you debate states the following part of which I accidentally omitted states -

    The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) estimates that in the year 1992 there were about 41,000 fires involving home electrical distribution systems. These fires resulted in 320 deaths, 1,600 injuries, and $511 Million in property loss. A study conducted by CPSC in 1987(1) indicated that the frequency of fires in the electrical system was disproportionately higher in homes more than 40 years old.

    What your original clip from CPSC did not state and what you omitted was the fact -

    The disproportionately high incidence of fire in the electrical system of older homes can usually be attributed to one or more of the following factors:
    - Inadequate and overburdened electrical systems
    - Thermally reinsulated walls and ceilings burying wiring
    - Defeated or compromised overcurrent protection
    - Misuse of extension cords and makeshift circuit extensions
    - Worn-out wiring devices not being replaced
    - Poorly done electrical repairs
    - Socioeconomic considerations resulting in unsafe installations.

    So as you can read, there are a number of 'factors' or overlapping factors which are at the root of your claims. Its not in my interpretation that fuses are the problem, nor necessarily the older panel but the study more than intimates its just more than older panels.

    In conclusion the study dates are both referring to homes 40 years or older.


  20. #85
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Firstly you are the odd man out in this discussion a number of us are disputing what you say should be done or indicated to client re old panels. And I base my findings and recommendations on what I see first hand, and make appropriate recommendations based on findings, not arbitrary decisions.

    The studies both refer to homes prior to 1960 so my dating is accurate as far as documentation.

    Residential wiring systems installed in new or existing houses during the 1960s and earlier are almost surely at the end of their functional design life.
    As to wiring devices I believe this refers to old switches and plugs, and not fuse panels.

    As to data I have already provided same and I am not the only one in opposition to your views, of which the data does not back up your claims as you would have everyone believe.

    Happy Easter.


  21. #86
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Abram View Post
    @ Gary Sorells -"Silence may be golden and in that silence I will have to assert that declaring equipment based on age is beyond its serviceable life and is a hazard is false concept. Like breakers, fuses seem to have an indefinite service life and, in and of themselves, no hazard."

    Well Gary - We have CPSC and Insurance Companies indicating that there is a higher risk of fire with old, (pre 1960), equipment.
    ..........
    The 1948 fuse panel or fuse may be serviceable but, there are other factors involved. The homebuyer may not be able to obtain Insurance with the fuse panel in place.No Insurance = no mortgage = no sale. The homebuyer can yell as much as they want but,they still are facing underwriting rules that indicate that fuse panels are a high risk......
    On the other side of the coin - Do you have any data to support that old fuse panels are safe ? ........

    Jim,
    The reports that you site do not identify the equipment as the sole cause and do not distinguish fuses from breakers. Then there is the point that that there are more fires in older homes due to there being more homes that are older. I think there are about 3million households in the U.S. How many of those households are living in property that is over 40 years old? Haven't done the research but intuitively I would say that there are a majority over 40 yrs old. Kinda skews the things a bit. But that is not the discussion.

    As you point out "The 1948 fuse panel or fuse may be serviceable but, there are other factors involved." which is the salient point that I keep returning to. It is the other factors and not solely the fuses/breakers. Which, from what you have written, agree with it is not the solely equipment as other factors are involved. If the equipment was a cause, then there is the question of was it damaged or altered in some way which caused its failure and made it a hazard?

    Like in psychology, normalcy is defined by the lack of the abnormal. Such is the case of Fuses. In the absence of there being something abnormal (not as designed and built) then it is safe. Further, by the lack of any data demonstrating the failure of the fuses to perform it then would be considered safe.

    The lumping of fuses in with extension cords begs the question of the chicken and the egg. Does a failure of an extension cord condemn the fuse equipment?

    Again we return to the question of; is the equipment serviceable or beyond its serviceable life and also is a hazard?

    I do not think that you would summarily condemn all of the homes switches, wiring and outlets in a home built in 1960 (aluminum wiring excluded) as beyond its serviceable life and are all hazardous.

    Then there is the thought that since older homes are less in cost and are owned by people with lower income, would it not be safe to say if a person does not make a lot of money then they are a hazard and should not be allowed to occupy an older home. Thus removing the hazard. OMG don't tell the Senate or the President or they will create an Obama "something" to fix this unacceptable situation for the proletariat..


  22. #87
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    I usually don't like to use the quote button, but will make an exception for you.


    It is not what I say ,it is the opinion of CPSC and the Insurance Companies. My judgments are based on opinions from the highest possible authority not a limited amount of first hand experiences although I do consider personal experiences. If you think that your limited findings outweigh the findings of the CPSC , I think that you have issues that I cannot help you with.
    Wrong,

    The highest possible authority are the codes and the authority having jurisdictions. Its unfortunate you cannot appreciate this fact. The CSPC is not a code authority, nor are the insurers. While I appreciate the insurers rights to refusal, they in most cases will at the very least accept a licenced electricians review or that of the (ESA) Electrical Safety Authority and their findings/recommendations.

    As to limited findings you have argued once again with most of us.

    Again - I base my recommendations on what I find and not on what you dictate because simply put you are not a code authority, nor are you an insurer and presently you are not a home inspector.

    Do I have that right?

    Last edited by Raymond Wand; 04-20-2014 at 05:27 AM.

  23. #88
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Just another thought about the issue.

    In the mid 1970's, HUD block Grant Redevelopment Authority took the position that fuses should be replaced with inserts called "Fuse Stats" These are really "S Type Fuses" when you look them up
    Fuses 101: All About Plug Fuses and Your Fuse Box

    These were fuse panel inserts with successively smaller sized bases. Each diameter insert S Type Fuse was designed to fit in each size. When you screwed the appropriate size base for the circuit into the original fuse base, you could only install the correctly sized fuse for that circuit. In simpler words, you could not put a 30 amp fuse on a 15 amp circuit.

    The problem that was being addresses was not the safety of the fuse panel system ( the metal strip inside a glass fuse will reliably melt before the house circuit wire turns into a "toaster wire" by overheating ... ..it is simple science ) The problem and safety risk being addressed was the people doing dumb things like over-fusing. Having also seen copper pipe being used in the space for the tube type fuses ...people are really, really dumb trying to avoid changing fuses and risking fire )

    I would bet that everyone on this thread has seen the bank of 30 amp fuses installed with 15 amp wire. That is a danger and hazard we can all recognize and agree on. "Darwin Awards" candidates anyone ?

    PS..... This is a different perspective and not a comment on the the prior posts in this thread.... This is a comment on history of fuses...from a guy who remembers putting them in and working on HUD Redevelopment jobs

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  24. #89
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    The "tamper-proof base" really isn't tamper proof. Bend the small wire that acts like a lock to the base and it comes out. Maybe tamper resistant but not tamper proof. Just like the screws on the face cover on a breaker panel make it tamper resistant.


  25. #90

    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Re: The comment above about tamper proof vs tamper resistant.

    As we have all seen at one time or another, just when you think you have something fool proof you find out how truly ingenious fools are.


  26. #91
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Have to disagree, based on my local and my experience.
    No insurer up here requires proof of insurance of a licenced electrician to comment and provide assessment. Some insurers will only want an inspection by the code authority, and not the licenced electrician.

    Many a home up here from the 70s were wired with Al and some insurers will refuse coverage out right while others will insure the home if inspected. Al is safe provided as with many things done correctly.

    Thanks for your opinion.


  27. #92
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Abram View Post
    .... If you rely on only Code you are missing a large number of components that are potential hazards.......
    Like the occupants....


  28. #93
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    Default Re: Anyone know about the reliabiltiy of these mini-breakers that replaced fuses?

    JA

    I appreciate that, but the fact remains houses are being insured with Al, while other insurers want a further assessment, while others will insure regardless no assessment, while other insurers will only accept government inspectors assessment, and they as code authority do not require insurance since it a government code authority.


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