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Washer Dryer tripping electrics


spunko

Question

I have a combined washer dryer. The washing part works fine but every time (literally) that I use the dryer part, it trips the electrics. It doesn't do it immediatately, you normally have to wait 10 mins or so.

Which makes me think that it's related to the heat part, something is getting too hot. Any ideas? The brand is AEG and it's only 2-3 years old.

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7 hours ago, spunko said:

I've got 2x circuits , I think. essentially 2 sets of switches each with their own mini rcd, all contained within one fuse box.  There's also the main rcd switch, that kills everything. 

When the dryer trips out, the little switch that it's on (labelled as kitchen sockets) turns off, as does the mini rcd switch for that circuit. The other circuit stays on, so basically half my house still has electric. 

Does that make sense @The XYY Man ?

Never trips the main big rcd breaker. I'll post a picture tomorrow if it's not clear....

As much sense as ever comes out of your gob.

If I remember my City and Guilds 236 theory right, you've got an over-current situation going on there by the sound of it as the circuit MCB is going off.

If you only had RCDs tripping, then that would indicate a fault to Earth - probably caused by water getting somewhere it shouldn't.

But as you are seeing the circuit MCB tripping, then the heating element in the dryer being faulty would be my prime suspect based on your observations.

EDIT: Pull the plug on your fancy coffee machine, your Carmen heated rollers, the Braun hair-drier, your Zanussi fridge, and everything else on that circuit - then run the drier. If the MCB goes, that is definitely where the over-current situation is happening. If it doesn't, then you are drawing too much current simply by having too many appliances on the circuit. Is the MCB a 20 Amp, or a 32...?

XYY

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OK, this is getting good. The RCD tripping suggests an Earth fault, but the MCB says over current in the Live / Neutral circuit.

I cannot make out the current rating on the MCB from your photo, but can see that the label underneath says ''Imm Heater'', which I am assuming means Immersion Heater.

Have you still got an immersion heater, or did you used to have one, and have used the spare circuit as a convenient feed to the washer/drier...?

 

 

XYY

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@The XYY Man

Untitled-1.jpg

here's a better photo. I've highlighted in red the 2x that trip.

The stuff on the right I didn't think was relevant. Yes I have an immersion heater but I was told to leave it off at the fusebox unless it was needed i.e. if my boiler breaks. It's just a backup.

Where abouts should I be looking to find the rating?

If it's what I think it is, then they say:

230V

B20 (most of the others say B32?)

And on the RCD switch it says: 80A

 

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3 minutes ago, spunko said:

@The XYY Man

Untitled-1.jpg

here's a better photo. I've highlighted in red the 2x that trip.

The stuff on the right I didn't think was relevant. Yes I have an immersion heater but I was told to leave it off at the fusebox unless it was needed i.e. if my boiler breaks. It's just a backup.

Where abouts should I be looking to find the rating?

If it's what I think it is, then they say:

230V

80A

 

If it says 80 Amps, then you've got the weirdest fusebox I've ever heard of.

Send me a close-up photo of the area I have highlighted in RED, or type EXACTLY what is printed on it in your next reply.

 

image.png.8efe4803ac0777522110456d5eb1ff54.png

 

XYY

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Just now, The XYY Man said:

If it says 80 Amps, then you've got the weirdest fusebox I've ever heard of.

Send me a close-up photo of the area I have highlighted in RED, or type EXACTLY what is printed on it in your next reply.

 

image.png.8efe4803ac0777522110456d5eb1ff54.png

 

XYY

No, the 80A is only on the RCCB one.

 

It says:

AUB1
B16
230V

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8 minutes ago, spunko said:

No, the 80A is only on the RCCB one.

 

It says:

AUB1
B16
230V

OK, so that's a 16 Amp trip.

Your problem now is what is tripping that MCB - the drier or the immersion heater.

Have you had this washer/drier for a while and it has worked perfectly before as it it currently wired, and has this fault developed recently...?

Or not...?

 

XYY

 

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1 minute ago, The XYY Man said:

OK, so that's a 16 Amp trip.

Your problem now is what is tripping that MCB - the drier or the immersion heater.

Have you had this washer/drier for a while and it has worked perfectly before as it it currently wired, and has this fault has developed recently...?

Or not...?

 

XYY

 

The immersion heater can't be tripping it because it's always been flicked to off whenever the "sockets" one on the left has tripped... I never turn it on, it's been set to off for months and months.

Anyway, I ran some tests. The "sockets" one that is tripping out is a 20 Amp. Does this sound enough to power sockets, as well as a dryer? I think you hit the nail on the head earlier when you said it was using too much power, because it only trips out when I've got other things running. If I run the dryer function with nothing else running from that circuit, it doesn't trip out.

What's weird is that I haven't changed anything, I've had this setup for 3 years and it didn't used to trip out. Obviously I use the dryer in winter more so I'm sure I would have noticed it before now.

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16 minutes ago, spunko said:

The immersion heater can't be tripping it because it's always been flicked to off whenever the "sockets" one on the left has tripped... I never turn it on, it's been set to off for months and months.

Anyway, I ran some tests. The "sockets" one that is tripping out is a 20 Amp. Does this sound enough to power sockets, as well as a dryer? I think you hit the nail on the head earlier when you said it was using too much power, because it only trips out when I've got other things running. If I run the dryer function with nothing else running from that circuit, it doesn't trip out.

What's weird is that I haven't changed anything, I've had this setup for 3 years and it didn't used to trip out. Obviously I use the dryer in winter more so I'm sure I would have noticed it before now.

The bit I've quoted in BOLD is exactly where I was going with this, and my next response was to tell you to run the washer with nothing else connected - which you have already confirmed doesn't cause the trip to go.

To me that says the problem is the total load on the circuit, and a fault to Earth would normally be ruled out at this point. But my spidery sense of electrical faults says that I don't think that is the case in your situation and that you have a combination of both an Earth fault and an over-current problem. In which case the Immersion Heater has to be the main culprit, but the washer might also be part of your problem.

I need you to agree to a disclaimer before I tell you what I would do next as it is potentially lethal to you and your family.

If you want a response, then tell me in writing that you accept that my advice could cause your death if you follow it.

Deal or no deal...?

 

XYY

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My solution involves disconnecting the Earth connections to the immersion heater and/or the washer-drier.

This is very dangerous, and you should ensure that no-one in your household - including pets - can touch the metal-work of the electrical appliances in question while you fuck about with this.

 

XYY

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Chewing Grass
3 minutes ago, The XYY Man said:

My solution involves disconnecting the Earth connections to the immersion heater and/or the washer-drier.

This is very dangerous, and you should ensure that no-one in your household - including pets - can touch the metal-work of the electrical appliances in question while you fuck about with this.

 

XYY

Surely the immersion heater is on a double pole switch, so if its off, its off.

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Just now, Chewing Grass said:

Surely the immersion heater is on a double pole switch, so if its off, its off.

From Spunko's photo, that appears to be the case.

But then that would also kill the power to the entire circuit if it is wired correctly. I am asking these questions for good reasons as I know how cowboys can fuck about with electrics for a quick profit.

 

 

XYY

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Chewing Grass
12 minutes ago, The XYY Man said:

But then that would also kill the power to the entire circuit if it is wired correctly. I am asking these questions for good reasons as I know how cowboys can fuck about with electrics for a quick profit.

Ah, that makes more detailed sense of post #8 now.

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@spunko Wouldn't recommend disconnecting earth at any time when unless and only during power is safely locked off.

That your RCD is tripping could be a red herring, often when MCB's trip under load they will causing bouncing voltages/currents in the feed that will  trip the RCD and other circuits connected via that RCD when the MCB trip occurs. A tripping RCD will not cause an MCB to trip however in normal operation. So I think options are:

1) Total load is being exceeded normally with everything working fine - you are using drier on different power / setting or there is another load on the circuit not accounted for to account for change in operation now compared to before.

2) The MCB is tripping incorrectly and is faulty / out of tolerance, not as unlikely as it seems.

3) There is a definite fault in the washer/drier, caused by heating up of the element to get to the fault condition - either overload / excessive load for circuit or hard fault to earth which is tripping the MCB and RCD.

Good news is you have a repeatable fault, not one that happens completely randomly which makes diagnosing easier.

First thing I would try is running the washer/drier off a good quality heavy duty extension lead, fully unwound if coiled/reel type, from nearest 32A ring circuit socket - using shortest extension possible/available. Keep an eye on the cable whilst doing so as well as wouldn't fully trust extension reel ratings just in case. Report back on whether that works or not.

Edit - Also query about the washer drier - I've assumed it is on a 13 amp mains plug into a socket, not hard wired in or wired directly via a fused connection unit? Above would be easier with a plug top but not so easy if not. If on plug then 13amp fuse should blow before MCB anyway if overloaded from (and only from) drier is the problem, same goes with FCU with 13 amp fuse.

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2 hours ago, spunko said:

I have a combined washer dryer. The washing part works fine but every time (literally) that I use the dryer part, it trips the electrics. It doesn't do it immediatately, you normally have to wait 10 mins or so.

Which makes me think that it's related to the heat part, something is getting too hot. Any ideas? The brand is AEG and it's only 2-3 years old.

Which trip is tripping...?

Main breaker, individual one in your fusebox for a particular circuit, or an earth protection breaker/RCD...? Knowing this is important when it comes to diagnosing faults with electrical equipment that mixes with water.

If you don't know what the fuck I'm on about, then post a photo highlighting the trip in question and its location in your electric cupboard.

 

 

XYY

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I've got 2x circuits , I think. essentially 2 sets of switches each with their own mini rcd, all contained within one fuse box.  There's also the main rcd switch, that kills everything. 

When the dryer trips out, the little switch that it's on (labelled as kitchen sockets) turns off, as does the mini rcd switch for that circuit. The other circuit stays on, so basically half my house still has electric. 

Does that make sense @The XYY Man ?

Never trips the main big rcd breaker. I'll post a picture tomorrow if it's not clear....

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1 hour ago, The XYY Man said:

My solution involves disconnecting the Earth connections to the immersion heater and/or the washer-drier.

This is very dangerous, and you should ensure that no-one in your household - including pets - can touch the metal-work of the electrical appliances in question while you fuck about with this.

 

XYY

I'm not trying it tonight, I've had a few drinks. :CryBaby: Apparrently my judgement is still sound, I shall try it tomorrow though...

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