As a GE Magne-Blast circuit breaker ages, it experiences various problems that can be costly and potentially dangerous if not addressed. Several issues, from worn-out contacts to worn-out bearings and Tuf-Loc bushings, can cause these breakers to fail. This guide looks at some of the most common problems with aging GE circuit breakers and what you should do to avoid costly mistakes.
Overview of GE Magne-Blast Circuit Breakers
The function of the GE Magne-Blast breaker is to deliver power safely to the customer’s loads and to interrupt the flow of electrical current when there’s an overload or fault in the system. When a fault occurs, the switchgear relays send a signal for the breaker to open and interrupt the current. This protects the electrical system from damage and prevents potentially dangerous situations from occurring.
Typical GE Magne-Blast circuit breaker applications include power generation, transmission and distribution systems, and industrial facilities.
As the power distribution system ages, the contacts within the breaker get worn out due to normal wear and tear. This can lead to reduced reliability, increased downtime, and potential safety hazards.
When the contacts get worn out, they may fail to make proper electrical contact leading to
increased resistance, arcing, and overheating, which can cause equipment damage or fires.
There’s a need for regular maintenance on aging circuit breakers to prevent these issues. This includes inspecting the contacts for signs of wear, such as pitting or burning, and replacing them if necessary. For example, Quad Plus investigated circuit breakers for a fossil fuel power generator, as shown in this case study, and recommended customized solutions.
Verify that the breaker has old-style Tuf-Loc bushings (nylon type). The Tuf-Loc bushings should be replaced with new aluminum bronze-style bushings during refurbishment or reconditioning. The OEM strongly urges this recommendation. We had a customer that experienced a failure due to worn Tuf-Loc bushings. They caused the breaker to fail to open (the mechanism jammed), which resulted in a very costly shutdown for the customer.
Lubrication is critical to proper operation. Old, gummed-up lubrication can cause a breaker to operate slowly and causes wear and tear on the parts. Bearings are particularly subject to lubrication issues.
Prevent Aging of GE Magne-Blast Circuit Breakers
An aging GE Magne-Blast circuit breaker can experience various issues compromising its safety & reliability. However, plant maintenance engineers can prevent these problems with proper maintenance and inspection. Quad Plus offers cutting-edge and effective solutions if you need help with aging GE Magne-Blast circuit breakers. Contact Jim Woulf from Quad Plus at (920) 515-4155 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org for reliable repair and maintenance services.