4 Things To Keep In Mind About Circuit Breaker Voltage

4 Things To Keep In Mind About Circuit Breaker Voltage

In general, a circuit breaker’s performance is based on the ratings and specifications that it comes with. This is to protect the consumer or electrician from experiencing any electrical problems. These ratings can be found on the nameplate of the device itself, which also includes the frequency rating, current rating, and voltage rating. But what do these mean, exactly? Here are four things to keep in mind when looking at circuit breaker voltage.

The Voltage Rating

If you’re looking at a durable 1 pole square d 50 amp breaker, for example, the circuit breaker itself has a plate on it that tells you everything that you need to know about the circuit breaker, including what the voltage rating is. This is typically the highest Root Mean Squared voltage that the circuit breaker can produce. If a circuit breaker comes with more than one voltage number on the nameplate, then look at the highest voltage on the list.

The Frequency Rating

This is the specific operating frequency of the circuit breaker. A typical circuit breaker is rated between 50 and 60 Hz, and are used for direct current (DC). If you use a circuit breaker that is not within its operating frequency, then a temperature rise may occur and this can lead to the circuit breaker being damaged.

The Breaking Capacity

When it comes to a circuit breaker, there are two types of breaking capacity. There is the symmetrical breaking capacity and the asymmetrical breaking capacity.

  • Symmetrical breaking capacity: This defines the symmetrical current and voltage recovery of the circuit breaker. It is the maximum RMS amount of an AC component of a short circuit current when the breaker contacts separate.
  • Asymmetrical breaking capacity: This defines the circuit breaker’s asymmetrical current and voltage recovery. It is the RMS amount that refers to the sum of AC and DC components of a short circuit current at the moment the breaker contacts separate. This is usually higher than the symmetrical breaking capacity.

The Short-Circuit Current Rating

Also known as the SCCR, this is the RMS current that can pass through a circuit breaker without any external damage taking place. This rating is usually measured in kA (kiloampere), and it determines the safety of th equipment if any fault currents occur. Circuit breakers are used in heavy-duty equipment, such as elevators and industrial equipment, so this rating is very important to ensure that an unsafe working environment isn’t created.

Circuit breakers are designed to not only help control the flow of electricity in your home, but it’s also to keep your electrical system safe if an overload were to ever occur. But to do so, you have to be aware of the appropriate ratings that are needed for your home so that you can find the right one. If you’re unsure which device would be right for installation in your home, it would be best to consult a professional so that you can get the right advice as to exactly what you need for the safety of your home.


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