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Kevin
Kevin, Licensed Electrician
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 2925
Experience:  29 years as a Licensed Electrical Contractor in Illinois, 5 year college Electrical Instructor, Former Electrical Inspector, Diploma in Digital Electronics, Former Illinois Licensed Home Inspector
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The breaker panel in our 2008 Chicago condo looks like a work

Customer Question

The breaker panel in our 2008 Chicago condo looks like a work of art in how neatly the electrician wired everything behind the cover; however, there is a very faint humming noise coming from the three AFCI breakers (Murray type MP-AT). You can only notice it if you put your ear right up the box. I would greatly appreciate a certified electrician's opinion on if this is this normal or something to worry about? By the way, I can tell it is these breakers making the noise because if I flip them off the noise stops. Thanks for the expert advice.
- Adam Goodman
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: Electrical
Expert:  Eddie replied 7 months ago.
Hi Adam ...........all three are making the noise?...........normally they shouldn't be making any noise...........it could be that the lug has come loose with vibration, you could try tightening that...........or it could be that you have arcing in the circuit .....some things to try is shut the breaker ....remove the wire ..........switch it back on see if it hums .......switch it off and test another circuit wire in it .............electricity is always a process of elimination ............if all of these fail then your breaker might have gone bad you might want to replace it or them.........be very careful when you are in the box ....only touch what you are targeting (ie a lug/screw or a wire)Thankseddie
Expert:  Eddie replied 7 months ago.
Hi Adam .............. I took up your ticket before I realized that you specified for a certified electrician .........although I have done extensive work in the field I am qualified but not certified...............so I must apologize and I will opt out and turn it back over to some of my esteemed colleagues.........sorry for the delay and confusuion
Expert:  Kevin replied 7 months ago.
Hello and welcome to Just Answer. My name is ***** ***** I will be happy to assist you with your electrical question. 1) Noises should never occur inside any electrical panel or at any electrical wall or ceiling box. However, Murray AFCI breakers are known to create a slight humming noise as compared to other AFCI manufacturers.Humming noises can indicate that arcing is either taking place or there may be a non-resistive load on the circuit such as lighting dimming switches which can also cause this problem. A lighting circuit can hum if a dimmer switch and a light bulb type are not compatible..........ie...........using an incandescent rated dimmer switch with either CFL or LED light bulbs. 2) 1st item to confirm is if lighting dimmer switches are installed on the respective branch circuits. If so, temporarily remove the LINE side wire from the dimmer and confirm at the AFCI if the humming noise remains or goes away. 3) If the humming noise remains once a dimmer switch LINE connection is temporarily disconnected or no dimmers exist on the circuit is to locate another non-AFCI working circuit breaker of the same amperage in the panel and "roll" the respective branch circuit hot wire to the known working breaker and confirm if the humming noise goes away or follows. 4) Some AFCI breaker brands have had a recall due to humming noises. Murray AFCI breakers are known to cause a hum. If swapping the circuit or dimmer incompatibility is not an issue on the circuits, I recommend to replace the AFCI breakers with newer versions. Seimens now owns Murray. Both of these AFCI breakers have had previously known humming problems. Reply back to me and let me know what you find and we can take it from there.............Thanks..........Kevin:)
Expert:  Kevin replied 7 months ago.
If you have any additional questions, just let me know and I’ll be glad to answer them for you. Otherwise, don’t forget to rate me before you log Off. Thanks..............Kevin:)
Expert:  Kevin replied 7 months ago.
If you have any additional questions, just let me know and I’ll be glad to answer them for you. Otherwise, don’t forget to rate me before you log Off. Thanks..............Kevin:)
Expert:  Kevin replied 7 months ago.
If you have any additional questions, just let me know and I’ll be glad to answer them for you. Otherwise, don’t forget to rate me before you log Off. Thanks..............Kevin:)
Expert:  Kevin replied 7 months ago.
If you have any additional questions, just let me know and I’ll be glad to answer them for you. Otherwise, don’t forget to rate me before you log Off. Thanks............Kevin:)

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