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As a market leader in electrical wiring devices, Leviton's new line of OBC AFCI Devices address the dangers associated with both types of potentially hazardous arcing - parallel and series arcing. Similar to GFCIs, AFCI Devices provide feed-through protection and are able to detect downstream parallel and series arc-faults, as well as upstream series arc-faults. Utilizing an AFCI device offers homeowners the benefit of localized TEST and RESET, providing a convenient option to AFCI breakers. Leviton ASFW1 Outlet Branch Circuit Combination AFCI/Switch, 15A-120V with wall plate.
The Leviton Combination ASFW1 AFCI/Switch provides the convenience of a single pole switch to control the lights and important AFCI protection to help protect against electrical fires resulting from arc-faults. This device is great way of adding AFCI protection to an existing circuit by simply replacing a standard switch with an AFCI protected switch. It can be easily installed in kitchens, family rooms, bedrooms, dining rooms, hallway any room in the home where there is a light source requiring a switch and AFCI protection is needed(neutral wire is required to be used). It should be placed as the first outlet on the circuit to maximize protection.
The AFCI component of this device is designed to identify potentially dangerous arc-faults within a homeâs electrical system - which includes the wiring within walls, fixtures, appliances, equipment and extension cords - and respond by interrupting power to help prevent arc-faults that may lead to a fire. It features a Test and Reset button on the face of the device; offering the convenience of localized control which saves homeowners a trip to the breaker panel.
The Leviton OBC Combination AFCI/Switch provides feed-through protection and is able to detect downstream parallel and series arc-faults, as well as upstream series arc-faults on the home run portion of the branch circuit when installed as the first outlet. These potentially dangerous arc-faults create high intensity heating which may result in burning particles exceeding 10,000 degrees Fahrenheit and may over time ignite surrounding materials such as wood framing or insulation.
According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), arc-faults are 'the principle electrical failure mode resulting in fire'.
Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters (AFCI) were developed to help combat the problems associated with arc-faults.
- AFCIs are designed to detect a wide range of arc-faults to help reduce the likelihood of the electrical system being an ignition source of a fire.
- AFCIs function by cutting off power when potentially dangerous arcing is detected.
- AFCIs are now required by the National Electrical Code in many areas throughout the home.
Often unseen, arc-faults can occur anywhere in the homeâs electrical system including, but not limited to:
- Within walls from nails, screws or staples inadvertently driven into wires
- At loose electrical connections
- Through brittle or heat-damaged cords
- Within electrical cords accidently damaged by furniture resting on or pressing against them
Because arc-faults are sometimes not visible it is important to have a means to detect a potential problem in a homeâs wiring. The Leviton OBC Combination AFCI/Switch is an ideal solution - it installs easily in a standard wallbox and may be used for new construction, retrofit and replacement applications.
AFCIs and GFCIs are both important devices to incorporate into a homeâs electrical system. It is important to recognize, however, that although they are similar in appearance they offer very different protection. The chart below outlines the overall function of these two devices and offers guidance regarding where they should be placed in the home according to the National Electrical Code.
|Function||Provides protection from electrical fires that could result from arc-faults||Protects people from shocks and electrocution due to ground faults|
|Operation||Works by detecting potentially hazardous arc-faults and quickly cutting off power||Works by interrupting power if a ground fault is detected|
|Where required by NEC||Required by code in family rooms, dining rooms, living rooms, kitchens, parlors, libraries, dens, bedrooms, sunrooms, recreation rooms, closets, hallways or similar rooms or areas. Also required in dormitories||Required by code in locations such as kitchens, bathrooms, basements, laundry rooms, garages, porches, outdoors, and any other areas where water may be present|