Insteon and AFCI (Arc-fault circuit interrupter) Circuit Breakers

Years ago, first generation AFCI breakers were manufactured with poor tolerances which caused false triggers from a variety of common appliances, including Insteon powerline signals. Later generations of AFCI breakers are better engineered for real-world electronics and do well at avoiding being falsely triggered. Today there are no issues with using AFCI breakers and our Insteon devices. However, if the installer fails to follow standard wiring rules associated with AFCI circuits, you may experience issues.

Follow these important rules when wiring devices on AFCI circuits: 

  • Any branch circuits that feed receptacles before switches should be pigtailed connections at the receptacle. This is where you wire the incoming wire and the wire from the panel side and the wire going down stream together with a third wire “the pigtail” that goes to the outlet. DO NOT USE THE OUTLET AS A SPLICE TO CONNECT THE INCOMING AND OUTGOING WIRES BY STABBING THEM INTO THE BACK OF THE OUTLET
  • With AFCI breakers it is imperative that wall switches are connected to the same neutral that goes with that circuit. If switch box has two neutrals, only connect the switches neutral wire to the neutral from the circuit the switch is connected to. If an AFCI breaker wont reset after installing an Insteon switch it is because the wrong neutral was used. This can be a result of the electrician crossing neutrals in another box and not the fault of the wiring at the switch box itself. 
  • Loose or poor splices can cause a situation where an Insteon switch can trip an AFCI breaker. This is not the fault of the switch but the loose connection somewhere in the circuit.

If you are using AFCI breakers and experience false triggers with your Insteon system, please contact us at support@insteon.com and be sure to include the make and model of your AFCI breakers. 

Isaac Sanz

16542 Millikan Ave, Irvine, CA, 92606, United States