replacing main panel, should I add any AFCI breakers ?

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I'm not disagreeing with your observations (don't have enough experience to do so), but if you think cde changes are due to one person at a desk being bored, you're wrong.
Proposed changes go through many layers of review at the NFPA.

Finally, be glad that at least they admit (and revert) when they are wrong.
 
When price comes down and reliability go up then AFCI's will be more accepted. I've had a gfci or 2 go bad over the years but they have also performed well for me for the majority of the time. They are fairly priced and do the job well without being overly troublesome with nuisance trips. The biggest issue is people don't know which gfci to reset, or where it is, or even which button to push. These are all trivial issues.

The AFCI, i don't think are their yet. But maybe they will be in not to long.
I thought about adding them to some of my circuits as i question the wiring in my Utah house. But opted to not do it until they improve on their reliability.
 
Interesting discussion, but back to my OP ... If I'm only going to add 2-3 AFCI breakers, where should I add them ? Does my logic that bedroom fires are more likely to be life-threatening (because fires in other parts of the house will set off smoke alarms in time for evacuation) make sense ?
 
Well after GFCI's in bath, kitchen, basement, garage, attic (i think?), and Ext, there isn't too much left other than beds and living rooms.

AFCI is really protecting against bad wiring. Anyone's guess where that would be? I guess your bedroom logic seems reasonable. I'm no expert, just a diy guy.
 
I'm originally from europe, and the GFCI rules are very different over there, better IMO. Growing up we never had a nuisance trip, and the whole house was protected. The GFCI's are in the panel. It is split up in 2 ways:
  • One 300mA GFCI for the whole house, all incoming power goes through it
  • 30mA GFCI for all outlets, lights, and damp spaces. Maximum 8 circuits per GFCI.
The 300mA protects solar panels, and permanently plugged in devices such as ovens and fridges, freezers etc.

Here the GFCI outlets trip at 4mA, which causes all the nuisance trips. Yes it is safer, but it only leads to people taking them out due to frustration. 30mA will still zap you pretty good, but you'll live
 
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Well after GFCI's in bath, kitchen, basement, garage, attic (i think?), and Ext, there isn't too much left other than beds and living rooms.
I alreayd have GFCIs (outlets, not breakers) in all the places you're supposed to have them.
AFCI is really protecting against bad wiring. Anyone's guess where that would be? I guess your bedroom logic seems reasonable. I'm no expert, just a diy guy.
Yeah, no reason to think the bedroom wiring is worse. It's just the consequence seems like it'd be worse there ...
 
arc fault breakers on a older circuit is a problem waiting to happen. if arc fault breakers are so good than there would never be a nuisance trip. i only put them in when i have to. try telling a customer that it will cost them 62 dollars plus tax every time i come to there house for this problem. and that is just for the breaker. that price does not include getting to their house and troubleshooting the circuit for them which includes taking things apart and putting back together. could be anywhere.
Finally, be glad that at least they admit (and revert) when they are wrong.
the nec never apologizes just reverts the code and that's that. they never admit when they are wrong. it's like 25 to 30 years ago they had us putting a switch on a house heater that would not only shut off the hot wire but shut off the hot and the neutral. that was after some dummy did his own work and the switch did nothing and the firing heater burnt the house down. so they put it back to the way it always has been just shut off the hot. they are quick to change the code and make us fools do the research for them.

as far as gfi receptacles they would be fine if everyone would put in weather resistant outlets.

the code on arc fault circuits is any new circuit or if you were to extend a circuit by adding a light or a receptacle is to be arc fault type. the code for making any circuit in a bedroom arc fault went away about 30 years ago. they would make it to any circuit that ran thru a bedroom was arc fault. i did a service change for someone selling their 2 family house and back then it was going to put a 750 dollar price to the service and that was 30 years ago. we were in a uproar about this because even a smoke detector was on it which is wrong. i had one bedroom that had 5 circuit running thru it. so that means that the circuit got a arc fault breaker when they were always tripping. first generation.
so that has left a bad taste in the mouths of electricians

you are best to bring you house up to 2024 standards for smoke and carbon monoxide detectors which is smoke detectors in everyroom of the house except bathrooms and kitchens. one carbon monoxide detector per habitable floor and where there is a bedroom within 10 feet of a bedroom door. in large houses sometimes there are 2 carbon monoxide detectors on one floor. and 5 to 20 feet of a fuel burning appliance. codes call for a smoke detector in the attic but the directions say that smoke detectors are not to be installed if the ambient temp. is to be 104 degrees or hotter. i've been in attics that were in the 90's in novemeber and up here in massachusetts outside is usually in the low 50's to 40's at that time.

you'll find a lot of fires start in bathrooms and bedrooms from smoking material that was not controlled. oh ya any smoke detector installed within twenty feet of a kitchen or bathroom has to be photo electric but one detector in the house has to be ionization type. there is also one heat detector per bay of a attached garage. one type detects smoke better than fire and the other detects fire better than smoke i always forget which is which. this is just my opinion and that's what i would do if i were to do something like that
 
Interesting discussion, but back to my OP ... If I'm only going to add 2-3 AFCI breakers, where should I add them ? Does my logic that bedroom fires are more likely to be life-threatening (because fires in other parts of the house will set off smoke alarms in time for evacuation) make sense ?
Bedrooms, home office, and circuits below open stairs.
 
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Bedrooms, home office, and circuits below open stairs.
BRs for reason I mentioned (we're sleeping there). Below open stairs , because fire spreads rapidly ? Why home office ?
 
BRs for reason I mentioned (we're sleeping there). Below open stairs , because fire spreads rapidly ? Why home office ?
I was looking around and that’s where I see a lot of cheap items purchased online that get plugged into power strips. And laptop cords which get rather abused
 
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If you have central AC and not plugging high load items like local resistive heating, I would not be jamming AFCI's in all circuits. Bedrooms maybe. Make sure your smoke detectors are in all spots. As far as sum pumps and basement freezers go, I would never put them on a fault breaker/recepticle. Call me old school.
 
If you have central AC and not plugging high load items like local resistive heating, I would not be jamming AFCI's in all circuits. Bedrooms maybe. Make sure your smoke detectors are in all spots. As far as sum pumps and basement freezers go, I would never put them on a fault breaker/recepticle. Call me old school.
ok your old school. but absolutely right. compressors are famous for tripping gfi receptacles and breakers and arc trips because they want to. the code book said that any outlet or circuit in a utility room does not have to be arc fault. try telling the inspector that one. he'll laugh then tell you put in arc fault on every receptacle in a house because that is what he wants to see.