Circuit breakers are the reason why our houses can consume a large amount of electricity safely. It is the first layer of defense that protects us from any sort of electrical disaster. But it is not perfect. It often trips, and its reasons vary from mislabeled wiring to sparkling.

But how to find what is tripping my circuit breaker? Today we will be guiding you through the finding process and tell you what you can do after that. Let’s not wait any longer. Keep scrolling to learn more. 

How To Find What Is Tripping My Circuit Breaker

What Causes The Circuit Breaker To Trip?

  1. Overloaded circuit: An overload refers to when more current passes through a circuit breaker than its rated amount. In this case, a breaker will keep tripping.
  2. Short Circuit: Short Circuits occur when a vast amount of current passes through an intended path or wiring.
  3. Ground faults: This is similar to Shot Circuits. An excess amount of current flows through an unintended path but is then directed straight into the ground afterward.

Signs Of A Bad Circuit Breaker

  • Noticeable diminishing performance
  • Scorch marks on the wiring/covering of the box
  • Visible damage to the exterior
  • Very hot to touch
  • Burnt smell

How To Find Out What’s Tripping Your Circuit Breaker

By following these steps, you can find out the reason easily.

✓ Check for Mislabeled Wiring

Circuits breakers are often mislabeled. This leads to wire connections where the voltage is either less or more than what it is rated to handle. So, checking and solving this can definitely save you from a tripped circuit breaker.

✓ Use a Multi-meter to check for effectiveness

If the breaker keeps tripping, then it just might be the condition of the breaker in question. So, to check for its effectiveness, use a multimeter to see if it loses voltage over time rapidly. If so, a replacement is required.

✓ Look out of faulty inside wirings

This is the most dangerous as it can’t really be observed as easily. If you have checked the external box and all the appliances thoroughly, you should call in a professional to get the wires behind the walls checked.

✓ Keep an eye on older and faulty appliances

There’s a chance only one of your appliances is responsible for the tripping of circuit breakers. Thus, to check for the culprit, plug off everything and then switch on the circuit breaker. Now plug in appliances one by one and wait a few minutes in between. This way, you can find which exact appliance is responsible for your circuit breaker tripping.

✓ Try resetting the tripped Circuit breaker

At the end of the day, it just might be that the switches were either stiff or loose. So just turning the circuit off, and then on might do the trick.

✓ Inspect the Circuit breaker for overheating/burning/sparkling

If you notice that the circuit is hot to touch or just generally overheating over a long period of time, then you are probably overloading your circuit. And as a result, you might be in danger of a short circuit. We recommend you upgrade your circuit breaker then.

Frequently Asked Question

1. Is it dangerous if the circuit breaker keeps tripping?

There is a potential danger in this as the tripping might happen due to overheating, which may lead to short circuits. Short circuits are the no 1 reasoning behind electrical house fires.

2. Why does my tripped circuit breaker not reset?

This is most probably due to faulty wiring or loose connections. There have also been many cases where this leads to short circuits, in which case you should call in professionals.

3. Can a circuit breaker trip for no reason?

Yes, they can. This is almost always due to not securing the switch properly.

Safety Tips You Should Follow

  • Keep flashlight and spare batteries at hand
  • Keep a clear way to work freely inside the box
  • Keep your panel info updated.


Tripping your circuit breaker can be annoying but, most importantly, a danger to all your important electrical devices.

With the tips we have given here, we are sure you can pinpoint what’s tripping your circuit breaker and act accordingly. Get to work now. It’s a matter of your safety, after all.

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