How Do Circuit Finders and Tracers Work?

Circuit Finders and TracersElectrical circuit finders are small plastic devices that can peer into walls and find open and live electrical circuits. There is a subtle difference between circuit breaker finders and circuit tracers. In very simple terms, professional electricians use tracers while finders by the layman. Tracers can locate wires on both live and open circuits, but the finders can work only on live or energized circuits.

  • Advanced products

Certain circuit tracers can follow circuits that are live 4 to 5 feet away. Circuit tracers are very sensitive and can, therefore, detect both strong and weak signals. These tools use many different types of techniques to find an electrical circuit, programmed to look for two different types of signals. To detect a complete circuit, it senses an electromagnetic field, but for an open circuit, an electrostatic field.

  • The various techniques

One technique used for live circuits is to inject a signal burst at the transmission and then control it on the AC waveform. The other one is meant for dead circuits where you have pulses at regular intervals. Picking the right modulation and frequency is a bit tricky, as you need to define a thing that not many things should hinder with. For example, there are too many sources of EM noise in the background, like computers. This means finders and tracers have to be advanced enough to filter these as well.

Whichever technique is used by the electric circuit finders and tracers; the basic principle remains similar. Depending on your requirements, you can choose between the circuit tracer or finder.

Make Electric Wire-Related Jobs Safe By Using the Right Tools

Live Circuit TracerThe law, as the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) cites, mandates employers to provide their workers with safe work environments. For instance, under the OSHA Act and Regulations for Construction Projects, everyone involved in the project, including employers, managers, and operators, have their own responsibilities to complete the project in a safe manner.

For many industries, electrical testing equipment is a must-have for many of their daily operations.

Proper usage of electrical testing equipment

People who have jobs that require them to handle hidden or buried electrical wires and cables require on electrical testing equipment, such as circuit tracers, so that they can establish and find out where these wires and cables are located. For instance, they depend on these tools so that they can locate wires and cables without having to damage insulation or piece the wires and cables themselves.

In addition, they use these devices to check for any open or short circuit, so that they can proceed with a more appropriate approach.

The live circuit locator/tracer

A quality live circuit tracer does a lot more than just help workers find hidden breakers supplying particular loads, wires or cables. They can also make it easier and faster to identify the energized outlets from those that are not. Additionally, they are useful for troubleshooting energized outlets.

Circuit tracing kits can locate both energized and de-energized circuits. Best of all, there is no need for power interruption. With these tools, locating individual wires packed in a network is a breeze. These can also be used to hunt down ground faults and shorts.

Nifty features to look for

When shopping around for circuit tracers, you may become overwhelmed with all the available options. The choice depends on the extent of projects, but for typical applications, a tracer with a voltage range of 100 to 1000VAC will work well already. You should also consider the distance features of the receiver to the transmitter.

Some of the other ideal features to look for include a clear display (like an LED display), remote probe, and warranty to get the most out of your investment.