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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Columbus, Ohio

    Default 1. Powdery Substance on CB Terminals 2. Solid aluminum conductor

    Inspected a house built in 1986 with a GE electrical panel. There was a white powdery substance on every circuit breaker terminal. Could it be some sort of electrical lubricant? I have never see this before. Also, there were solid aluminum conductors use for the AC and Range circuits. I think this is alright as long as the circuit breakers are rated for AL/CU but I have only seen solid AL conductors on homes built in the 70's that were all aluminum. All 15 and 20 amp circuits have copper conductors. Any input on the white stuff? Comments on the AL appreciated as well. Thanks!
    power1..jpg Powerder2.jpg solidAL.jpg

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Osceola, AR

    Default Re: 1. Powdery Substance on CB Terminals 2. Solid aluminum conductor

    What size wires were the range and AC wired with? With a range I normally see around a 40-50 amp breaker and the wires in your photo look small for that application. Usually a #8 or #6 CU is needed for 40 or 50 amps. AL wiring would need to be a size larger to carry that load so I would expect to see a #6 or a #4 AL wire.The majority of the wiring I see at that size is stranded and not solid conductor. Longer runs from the breaker to the appliance need to be upsized to allow for voltage drop.
    I seem to remember that there have been posts in the past concerning a white powder at breakers. I beleive that the concensus was that the manufacturer used some type of filler over screw heads and the material degraded over time & fell away. A search for "white powder" should turn up something in the older messages.

    Alton Darty
    ATN Services, LLC

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2010

    Default Re: 1. Powdery Substance on CB Terminals 2. Solid aluminum conductor

    Inachi MB.
    Scroll down to Robert Meir's post #10.
    Not always white.

    I was wondering, this powder desiccant? Anti moisture/humidity.
    Like you find for double/triple pane glazing's.
    Any thoughts?

    Robert Young's Montreal Home Inspection Services Inc.
    Call (514) 489-1887 or (514) 441-3732
    Our Motto; Putting information where you need it most, "In your hands.

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