How to replace a circuit breaker video

Replace A Circuit Breaker Video

Circuit Breaker

Circuit Breaker


OK, one big thing I left out of the video, on the breaker your replacing there will a number on it. In most cases it will be right on the handle (switch) stating 15 or 20amp or really what ever it may be. This is the amperage, this means if the circuit is drawing more than the stated amperage that the breaker will trip, now once a breakers trips you should wait at least 10 minutes before attempting to reset it. The reason is because the whole circuit has been over loaded and you should let it cool down first.


Never ever keep trying to reset a breaker that has failed. Doing so will provide the circuit with electricity and this is bad. Say the breaker tripped because a rat chewed the insulation on the wires and now there touching. The breaker did it’s job once for you. Don’t think it will keep doing so.


This I seen before, a 15 amp breaker keeps failing, it trips ever so often and now the home owner changes it do a 20 amp thinking that it should work now. You know what, he was right. It did work, meaning that the breaker didn’t trip for a whole two weeks. Instead the 14/2 15 amp wire in that circuit melted and made a fire. A very bad choice for him.

For a 15 amp circuit uses a 14 gauge wire with a 15 amp breaker

For a 20 amp circuit uses a 12 gauge wire with a 20 amp breaker

How to change a circuit breaker

As you can see from the picture below that the buss bars are staggered so the breaker that would be on top of the other one right on top of it will not take power from the same buss bar (phase)

So in other words, if you were to install a two pole breaker (220 volts) it will take power from both buss bars (both phases) creating 220 volts.



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6 Comments on "How to replace a circuit breaker video"

Sam Azar
February 8, 2014


Excellent videos on changing a breaker. I am wondering about a breaker in my panel that I cannot turn off. Obviously, It has not tripped to the off position in the past. I am wondering if this breaker is faulty and needs to be replaced.

July 18, 2012

What it seems to be is that you have a 220 line and you're trying to use a 120 outlet and A/C. Tell me if I'm right first before we go on, OK.

July 17, 2012

Hello Dominick, I was wondering if you know how to change a 20 amp outlet to a 15 amp outlet. So heres the story, we had a very old A/C that needed 20 amps and 220 volts. It had a special three hole outlet. Old A/C stoped working a long time ago, we put in a new a/c, and pluged into an outlet in the room other than the unique outlet for the old a/c, because it wouldnt fit. But every time I turn on the a/c plus the a/c in my sisters room, the circuit breaker downstairs clicks off. So I figured theres this 20 amp outlet in the wall thats good for nothing. So I decided to change the old outlet for old a/c and put in a new reg 20 amp 3 hole outlet. Now I can plug in the new a/c into the new outlet. Now the fan sounds very powerful, and stays on, but the compressor turns on for 5 sec then turns off, and repeats every 2 minutes. I am guessing there is too much power in the outlet, and compressor keeps turning off so that the ac doesn't burn out. And it does say the new a/c uses 15 amp, And I dont want to change the ac. Please let me know if you know.

Thank You

February 29, 2012

Thank you so much. Well not something can get done real fast. First you would find the beginning of that circuit and remove all the wires from the outlet or switch. And then on to the next one testing the breaker out each time. Now there can be a lot to it, but this should give you some kind of idea.

February 23, 2012

Thanks for taking the mystery out of this! I have a very healthy respect for electricity and so, if I don't know what I'm doing 110%, I don't touch it! Therefore, what you showed here with the breaker replacement is awesome. I completely got it!

Having said that, you made a comment about "tracing a circuit to find a short" if the breaker trips continuously. I don't have that problem, but I'd like to know your thoughts about how a person would go about doing that.

Thanks again!