The Dangers of Used and Reconditioned Circuit Protection Devices (Circuit Breakers)

It Is Important To Understand What Reconditioned Circuit Protection Devices Does

The Dangers of Used and Reconditioned Circuit Protection Devices (Circuit Breakers)

Reconditioned circuit protection devices are an awful idea, it’s important to comprehend what circuit safety does. Reconditioned circuit protection devices will have a one-year warranty from the day the breaker is shipped. Screening reconditioned circuit protection devices is vital for security as well as for practical reasons.

Reconditioned circuit protection devices can be unsafe, but we cannot agree that circuit breakers can be maintained and tested only by the OEM. Testing reconditioned circuit protection devices is essential for safety as well as for functional reasons. Reconditioned circuit protection devices are able to stop current in the event of a direct short, an excess of current or an excess of heat.

Testing reconditioned circuit protection devices is important for security in addition to for practical causes and for protection in addition to for purposeful motives.

Are Reconditioned Breakers a Good Idea?

Let’s look at the truth about reconditioned breakers, including when to use them and how to ensure reconditioning provides a safe and reliable breaker.

Many facilities managers use reconditioned and retrofitted circuit breakers with complete confidence. Reconditioning can decrease the number of unplanned facility outages while increasing personnel safety. This would seem obvious since you’re replacing worn or damaged parts with new components. What is not so obvious is you can also add technology the breaker didn’t originally have.

How to ensure a good reconditioning job. Let’s put one myth to rest. You are not taking a risk to save a few bucks by reconditioning a breaker – provided you find the right firm to do the job. However, the manufacturer is not your only source of high-quality reconditioning work. You can also use a reconditioning center. Ideally, a reconditioning center will have a history with a variety of power breaker manufacturers, database of all manufacturer information, quality control process, testing program per ANSI/IEEE standards, and technician training/certification program.

What is reconditioning? The IEEE says power breaker reconditioning is “the process of maintaining existing power switchgear equipment in operating condition as recommended by the manufacturer’s instructions, using only the original manufacturer’s designed parts.” A list of such parts could include add-ons developed since the purchase of your breaker. Read more here.

Reconditioned circuit protection devices mainly used for protection against overload and the short circuit under, they used as the main switch in the industrial, business or civil electric circuit.

Electrical circuit protection explained

Fuses, MCBs, RCDs, and RCBOs are all devices used to protect users and equipment from fault conditions in an electrical circuit by isolating the electrical supply. With fuses and MCBs only the live feed is isolated; with RCDs and RCBOs both the live and neutral feeds are isolated.


A fuse is a very basic protection device which is destroyed (i.e. it ‘blows’) and breaks the circuit should the current exceed the rating of the fuse. Once the fuse has blown, it needs to be replaced. In older equipment, the fuse may just be a length of appropriate fuse wire fixed between two terminals (normally screw terminals). These are becoming rarer as electrical installations are updated – the presence of such fuses usually indicates that it is about time that the installation is updated.

Miniature Circuit Breaker (MCB)

An MCB is a modern alternative to fuses used in Consumer Units (Fuse Boxes). They are just like switches which switch off when an overload is detected in the circuit. The advantage of MCBs over fuses is that if they trip, they can be reset – they also offer a more precise tripping value. See more here.

In fact, reconditioned circuit protection devices are fully functional and are often, if not always, tested for safety before they are sold and used circuit breakers are usually old, it is necessary to test them prior to purchase or using them.

Overload or Short Circuit Protection? How to Protect Your Design Against Both Dangers

Circuit breakers are used in a variety of ways.  They are mounted in panelboards to protect branch circuit wiring and they are built into equipment to protect it.  With this range of applications, it’s not surprising that a circuit breaker must provide both short circuit and overload protection.

Interrupting a short circuit that is limited by the resistance of the wiring is a very severe test of a circuit breaker, and if the interrupting capacity of the breaker is not adequate, the device can literally explode.  Overload currents that reach 2 to 5 times the normal rating of the breaker are handled differently, and very often the circuit breaker must carry the current for an appreciable time without tripping.  This white paper will give pointers on how to determine the main job a breaker must do and how to make an appropriate selection.

Protection against shorts and overloads is the largest concern when choosing a circuit breaker.  Branch circuits fed from a 480V main need protection against short circuit currents measured in tens of thousands of amperes.  For that reason, panelboards are equipped with circuit breakers for branch circuit protection that are listed under UL 489 – “Standard for Molded-Case Circuit Breakers and Circuit Breaker Enclosures” – and are rated to interrupt fault currents from 5000 to 50,000 amperes or higher. Read full article here.

Have You Figured Out If Reconditioned Circuit Protection Devices Are Really Safe To Use?

But in general mostly reconditioned circuit protection devices are Oil circuit breaker, Air circuit breaker, SF6 circuit breaker, Vacuum Circuit Breaker, and so on. Reconditioned circuit protection devices are never busted, so if you have one then forgo first on buying a new one as these breakers can still be switched back on and ready to be used. Reconditioned circuit protection devices can be refurbished and reused for re-installation to your home’s electrical system.

Reconditioned circuit protection devices are now flooding the marketing obviously because more households prefer to use them due to financial constraints. Getting new circuit breakers is recommended but since used circuit breakers are just as good, then you can opt not to buy one if you are saving cash. Used circuit breakers can be reconditioned, by replacing components that show signs of wear with new ones, call us here: (951) 805-1262 for more information.

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