Who needs AFCI Anyway

I guess its OK because the house didn’t burn down!:mrgreen:

Chuck Boldin

Should have been GFCI, as AFCI wouldn’t have worked in that scenario anyway!

It appears arcing started due to loose (screw not tight) neutral wire attachment to the plug fixture when an electric heater was plugged in. Did not appear to be a ground fault although I agree a combo AFCI / GFCI would be appropriate.

It looks like the backstab was used. If so the loose screw played no part in the arcing.

Jeff, why do you say it should have been GFI protected?

That was my thought too? Pretty sure an AFCI would have done the job on a hot to neutral arc fault before the breaker tripped.

FYI: Power in from CB was under screws - Power out to branch circuits connected to back stabs.

No ground wire at the outlet?
I see what looks to be a ground wire in the photo at the top left but can’t see where it’s going.

I agree with the backstab scenario, which led me to… due to what appears to be damage to the ground wire(s) (see where it is folded ‘from stuffing’) and the backstabbed conductors, (and not seeing everything first hand on site), the box looks to be overfilled leading to a short occurring with the backstabbed wires… thus IF any protection should have been installed, a GFI would have been more appropriate than an AFI. Obviously, there is probably more going on than we can see in the limited view of the pic. Perhaps I am wrong. You are much more an expert than myself on electrical and I will concede to your knowledge.

AFCIs do not protect against glowing connections.

Looks like the device was used as a wire through to other loads.

receptacle wiring should have wire nuts to make the splice and one set of pig tails to the outlet

That is a personal opinion. The device is listed to make a downstream connection. Even the pigtail method can have issues.

That’s how we always do it but as you know it’s not required by the NEC unless it’s a MWBC.