Completed Project How much of a voltage spike causes a circuit breaker to trip?

Thread Starter

Rahulk70

Joined Dec 16, 2016
533
Hi,

I've a GE 120/240V 20A circuit breaker. I know most circuit breakers trip when the rated current is exceeded in the circuit. BUt lets just assume that the current in the circuit is drawing current less than 20A but the voltage rises to 380V. What will happen? Will the breaker trip or the whole circuit will burn down? I've seen breakers trip during lightning strikes, but thats mainly dues to large amount of volts and current.
Thank You.
 

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Last edited:

crutschow

Joined Mar 14, 2008
30,818
Breakers respond only to current, not voltage.
So if a breaker trips during an overvoltage, it's due to the overvoltage causing an overcurrent.
 

Thread Starter

Rahulk70

Joined Dec 16, 2016
533
Thanks everyone. So, its only a current based device. I'm going to upgrade my panel and wiring with the latest breakers with GFCI. It was just curious to know if my breaker trips during a lightning strike, then will it trip during an over voltage spike too.
 
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