Canada's Number One Circuit Breaker Specialist

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Top Five Facts on Reconditioned Electrical Equipment

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As Canada’s #1 circuit breaker specialist, it’s pretty clear that we have a good idea of what separates a quality product from one that won’t cut it. A lot of folks think that a product needs to be new to be able to perform at the levels they expect, and while that is true, reconditioned products need not be overlooked.

At Civic, we specialize in recycled and reconditioned circuit breakers. We do this for a number of reasons and chief among them is that we believe we can provide a product that performs just as well as something new, but for a relative bargain. Not only do we believe in providing our clients with value for the products they choose to buy, but we back this value up with a one year, 100% guarantee of performance. We don’t expect our customers to buy products of a lower quality, nor would we provide one to them, which is what makes our guarantee so important.


 Facts on Reconditioned Products

Instead of merely paying lip service to our guarantee and our reconditioned products, we want to share what makes these products perform at the highest levels. This starts and ends with the rigorous testing we put all of our products through before we put them to market. With that in mind, we would like to share a little bit about how extensive our testing actually is, as we’re happy to pull back the curtain and share with our customers all the work we put into getting the products right:

  • Our testing standards meet and/or exceed testing standards set out by  PEARLNEMANETA, IEEE and even the manufacturers testing standards.
  • The reconditioned breakers we sell come with a unique tracking number that corresponds to the test report that goes with your breaker.
  • Breakers are first cleaned inside and out then undergo a step by step 36-point visual inspection of the exterior and interior
  • Three different pieces of equipment are required in order to fully test a breaker and determine that it is safe, reliable and trips according to the manufacturer’s own trip curve: insulation resistance, contact resistance, and overcurrent trip test
  • We also perform Low Voltage Molded Case Circuit Breaker with Thermal Magnetic Trip Inspection. This includes nine important steps to guarantee performance: case, lugs, operating mechanism, interphase separators, arc extinguishers/chutes, arcing contacts, main contacts, current carrying components, and thermal/magnetic trips.

Not only this, we back up all of our testing with written test results which is a sort of insurance policy for our customers. They know exactly how extensive the testing was, so not only do they have a guarantee that the product was put through the proper testing, but they know it will perform to the highest of standards. When there’s a lot at stake these guarantees mean a lot to everyone who is relying on these breakers to do their job


 Priority on Safety and Testing Standards

At Civic Recycling, safety and product performance are our two main goals and as you can tell, we take these things very seriously. With our guarantee and the extensive and rigorous testing we put all of our breakers through, we’re extremely confident that our existing customers, and you, will be wholly satisfied with the way our products perform.

 

Should you want to find out more, don’t hesitate to call in to our sales centre or send an email ([email protected]). We stand by all of our products whether they’re new, recycled, or reconditioned, and we’re always happy to tell you why.

 

Learn more about our Recycled and Reconditioned equipment, our testing standards, or Shop on our online store to find exactly what you need!

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Top 8 Myths about Reconditioned Electrical Equipment

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Ever heard something about electrical equipment you weren’t too sure about? What about reconditioned electrical equipment? Depending on what you heard it may be flat out wrong. Knowing the facts about reconditioned equipment is important. According to PEARL knowing the difference can “save you big bucks while helping your company meet environmental goals”.

PEARL is the Professional Electronics Apparatus Recyclers League. They ensure the quality AND safety of electrical equipment. Here at Civic Recycling we are a proud member and are certified with the organization.

Pearl has a fantastic article showcasing the top myths about reconditioned equipment. We will be showcasing and summarizing each point in our “Top 8 myths” post. Know the difference between fact and fiction from Civic Recycling and PEARL!


The myths are as follows:

Myth #1 – Reconditioned electrical equipment could be counterfeit

Reconditioned doe not equal counterfeit. Reconditioned models may not be supported by original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) but that does not mean they can be lumped under the same categories as surplus and counterfeit. As always all equipment is tested to high standards. Civic Recycling would know right away if anything was out of place.

Reconditioned equipment is obviously not new and in the case of counterfeit equipment, it almost always is. Counterfeit models will likely be in new packaging and can’t easily be mistaken for a reconditioned one. Most often residential style breakers or MCCBs is where counterfeiting occurs.


Myth #2 – Reconditioned electrical equipment is not as safe as new

Reconditioned electrical equipment is just as safe as new models as we have already outlined in a previous post. It may even be safer! This is because OEMs only batch test their products, reconditioning requires 100% device testing. The fact that the testing standards are so high are a testament to this fact. Civic Recycling is so sure about safety standards that we offer a 1-year warranty on all our products. Pretty great right? Visit our testing page for more on our process. Typically the general standards are as follows:

  • Conduct initial test
  • Disassemble, inspect, and clean
  • Replace/recondition worn and aging components
  • Reassemble
  • Perform verification test
  • Document
  • Certify

Myth #3 – Reconditioned equipment is less reliable, lower quality than new

As the PEARL article states:

“If a piece of electrical equipment was reliable and high quality when it was new, then older electrical equipment reconditioned to perform as good as or better than the original must also be considered reliable and high quality. Quality isn’t a question of new versus reconditioned, but rather, can you trust the source of the equipment? If you’re familiar with an OEM brand, you probably trust them.”

And on top of that, all PEARL certified companies such as Civic Recycling hold themselves to high standards in testing and quality.


Myth #4 – Reconditioned electrical equipment costs less, but more to operate

This argument is valid for certain types of equipment such as new TP-1 transformers and circuit breakers with solid-state trip technology or zone alarms. But most electrical equipment is passive and is not required to consume electricity to do its job. So the argument is not valid for most of the 21 types of standard electrical equipment covered by PEARL.

In addition, new and reconditioned equipment will be field-tested regardless. Onward to safety!


Myth #5 – Reconditioned electrical equipment increases liability

Let’s start by saying that each piece of reconditioned equipment is tested twice. Once before reconditioning and once after. Say one out of 100 breakers were tested coming off an assembly line…which would you trust more? Both are pretty solid bets but liability is not an issue for reconditioned equipment.


Myth #6 – Only OEMs can properly recondition electrical equipment

OEMs say that a company needs to understand the exact electrical engineering behind an electrical device and should only purchase reconditioned products from OEMs. However, there are some differences between private OEM reconditioning versus public PEARL reconditioning standards

  1. PEARL uses independent, third-party electrical engineers to review its standards (OEMs do not).
  2. PEARL makes its standards available to the public for review and comment. Open and transparent! OEMs don’t do this.

Myth #7 – Reconditioned electrical equipment invalidates the (UL) mark

Underwriter Laboratories (UL) official position is that independent testing and certification companies takes no position on the validity of UL marks after the equipment leaves the factory.


Myth #8 – Myths make for bad business decisions

By debunking myths and focusing on facts we can be sure to develop competitive solutions to electrical needs. The goal is to purchase the highest-quality electrical equipment at the best possible price and with the least amount of lead-time. Civic Recycling is happy to be serving Canadians since 1995.


A quick recap on each Myth we have debunked!

  • Reconditioned electrical equipment could be counterfeit
  • Reconditioned electrical equipment is not as safe as new
  • Reconditioned electrical equipment is less reliable, lower quality than new product
  • Reconditioned electrical equipment costs less to buy but more to operate
  • Reconditioned electrical equipment increases liability concerns
  • Only OEMs can properly recondition electrical equipment
  • Reconditioning electrical equipment invalidates the Underwriter Laboratories (UL) mark
  • Get It Straight: Myths make for bad business decisions

For the full article take a look at the original PDF document:

http://www.pearl1.org/downloads/Busting-Myths-About-Reconditioned-Electrical-Equipment_lowres.pdf


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Electrical Safety: The Top 5 Points you Need to Know

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Civic Recycling offers new and reconditioned electrical equipment. Our certified technicians follow our rigorous testing standards on all reconditioned products. Safety is our top priority and so we have put together some information to keep you safe.

Electrical safety is critical both at home and at work. Here, we look at 5 top considerations to enhance your safety.

Electrical Safety: Use sockets with tamper-resistant (TR) receptacles

The National Electrical Code (NEC) requires that all buildings constructed or renovated after 2008 have tamper-resistant (TR) receptacles. TR receptacles are special devices with spring-loaded shutters that close off the contact openings of the receptacles. Because both springs need to be compressed before the shutters can open, electrocutions resulting from accidental insertion of a conducting material into one contact opening can be minimized.

Ensure that your home has ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs)

When there is a break in the grounding path of a low-resistance current, the current can take an alternative path to the ground through the user. This is called a ground fault. Ground faults are common and have resulted in severe injuries and even deaths in the past. Ground Fault Current Interrupters (GFCIs) are lightning-quick circuit breakers used to cut off such faults.

Protect your electrical outlets with Arc-Fault Circuit Interrupters (AFCIs)

Replacement receptacles should be arc-fault circuit interrupter (AFCI) protected. An AFCI is an electrical safety device that helps to prevent fires.  It resembles a GFCI in the sense that both devices have test buttons and a reset button. The main difference, however, is that GFCIs are designed to protect people from getting electrocuted whereas AFCIs are meant to prevent fires.

Be extra careful with transformers

Transformers must be carefully tested before installation and continuously monitored thereafter. Make sure that there is no continuity (electrical leakage) between the primary and secondary coil. Also, ensure that there is no leakage between the power cord and any metal external parts such as the rivets. Most transformers are equipped with circuit breakers for additional safety.

Use only tested devices that meet industry quality standards

The design and manufacture of electrical devices is guided by certain industry standards. The Canadian Electrical Code or CE code develops and maintains these standards. Our neighbours to the South follow the National Electric Code and the National Fire Protection Association. Electrical components that fail to meet these standards might expose you to unnecessary danger. Civic Recycling certifications meet and often exceed the standards set out by PEARL (Professional Electrical Apparatus Recyclers League), NEMA (National Electrical Manufacturers Association), IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) and NETA (InterNational Electrical Testing Association).

All Civic Recycling electric devices; from circuit breakers to transformers, and fuses to motor controls, are tested to the highest standards to ensure that they are not only safe but very reliable.

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RECONDITIONED CIRCUIT BREAKERS: ARE THEY SAFE?

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Sometimes a governmental safety alert is publicized and it gets people talking and rumors spreading regarding the safety of a certain product or sometimes even the practices of an entire industry. The Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), a division of the United States Department of Labor, released such an alert in the fall of 2011. Entitled Incorrectly Refurbished Circuit Breakers, the alert describes how a third-party electronic equipment rebuilder modified certain Eaton/Cutler-Hammer molded-case circuit breakers while incorrectly refurbishing them. Some of the safety issues cited regarding these third-party 600-volt and 1000-volt suspect breakers include:

  • Circuit breakers have been altered from the original manufacturer’s design
  • Exterior labels on cases were reproduced by the rebuilder in an attempt to make them look new and authentic
  • Frames for both 600-volt and 1000-volt units contain parts of unknown origin and specs
  • 1000-volt covers may have been assembled onto units rated at only 600-volts
  • Breakers show no indication of having been approved by a nationally recognized testing organization

Conclusion: These knock-off, counterfeit, bogus breakers are a safety risk and should not be used, due to their inherent danger. OSHA recommended pulling them out of service as soon as possible.

Reconditioned Circuit Breaker – Safe to Use?

Because of instances like this, some have questioned the safety of buying and utilizing a reconditioned circuit breaker. The fact is, not only are properly reconditioned circuit breakers safe, but in some instances may be even safer than new ones. This is evidenced by the number of brand new units that have been recalled by their manufacturers as a result of improper performance or risk of fire danger. You can see examples of some of these recalls here.

Here at Civic Recycling, we pride ourselves on our unrelenting attention to detail and dedication to providing unparalleled quality in all our products and services. For more than two decades we’ve brought our customers only the best and that’s certainly helped us in becoming Canada’s number one circuit breaker provider, offering not only the largest selection anywhere but also giving fair and reasonable prices that save our clients money every day.

The Ultimate in Recycling – Circuit Breaker Reconditioning

Reconditioning electrical equipment has been called the ultimate form of recycling. It’s not only good for the environment but it’s good for your business and your bottom line too. Companies have been using our reconditioned circuit breakers for decades with total confidence. The importance of having the equipment reconditioned by a qualified, certified firm, however, cannot be overstated.

Our highly-trained, PEARL-certified technicians are experts at disassembling, cleaning, analyzing, reassembling and then performance testing and conducting the final inspection on all types of electrical equipment, circuit breakers included. Each circuit breaker we refurbish goes out the door with a written test report, a unique, associated tracking number and a 100%, unconditional, one-year guarantee.

PEARL, which stands for Professional Electrical Apparatus Recyclers League, has become an important force in the industry since its inception in 1997. We whole-heartedly subscribe to their stated mission of bringing the desired distinction of quality, safety and integrity to their members’ customers, with the safety of the end user representing their #1 priority.

Reconditioned Circuit Breaker from Civic Recycling – A Good Idea

Our testing and reconditioning procedures meet or exceed standards set out by PEARL, NEMA (National Electrical Manufacturers Association), IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) and NETA (InterNational Electrical Testing Association).

Having PEARL-certified technicians in house here at Civic Recycling sets us totally apart from all others in Canada. PEARL is an ANSI-accredited Standards Developer. ANSI, or the American National Standards Institute, was established in 1918 and has been setting industry standards longer than any organization.

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