How to Test Circuit Breakers

Finding out if you need to replace a breaker is easy if you follow these tips.


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You Will Need

  • Multimeter
  • Circuit breaker


  1. Step 1

    Open the electrical box

    Open the circuit breaker box and locate the switch that corresponds to the area you want to test.

  2. Turn off or unplug the electric devices in the area to avoid a power surge.

  3. Step 2

    Test the switch

    Determine whether the breaker is in the On or Off position. If it's off, flip to the On position.

  4. If the breaker trips after a few seconds, there may be a problem with the wiring.

  5. Step 3

    Connect the prongs

    Touch one of the multimeter's prongs to the terminal screw, and touch the other prong to the ground screw.

  6. Step 4

    Check the readout

    Check the readout on the multimeter or look for an indicator light. If no voltage is indicated, then no power is reaching the breaker and it will need to be replaced.

  7. A volt is the measure of the unit of the force that sends electrons through a circuit.