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Why Your RCD Keeps Tripping and What to Do

A tripped RCD can be cause by different situations
A tripped RCD can be cause by different situations

Do you find that your RCD keeps tripping without any obvious reason? This can be extremely frustrating, especially if it keeps happening over and over again. Fortunately, there are usually some simple explanations for why this might be happening. We compiled them below. But before the reasons for RCD tripping, let’s first understand a bit more about how it happens.

RCD Tripping

Residual current device tripping involves the RCD sensing an imbalance in the current flowing through the protected circuit. In a well-functioning electrical system, the current flowing into a circuit is equal to the current flowing out.

If there is a sudden drop in current, or if the current starts flowing in the wrong path or direction, it means that there is a leakage somewhere.

This could be due to a faulty appliance, frayed wiring, or someone coming into contact with live wires. When an RCD device detects the leakage, it will trip and cut off the power to prevent any further damage or injury or injury to persons.

RCD tripping can have many different causes
RCD tripping can have many different causes

Why is RCD Tripping?

RCD protection works by detecting any current leakage from an electrical circuit and quickly disconnecting the power to prevent electrocution. But a residual current device can sometimes trip when there’s no apparent reason. RCD tripping causes include any of the following five reasons.

1. Faulty or Damaged Electrical Appliances

If you have any electrical appliances that are damaged or faulty in any other way, this can cause them to leak current. A good example is an old oven tripping RCD every time it’s turned on. This could be due to a damaged heating element or other problem that is causing current to leak from the appliance.

What to Do

  • Unplug every appliance from the electrical circuit and reset RCD. Here is a short video on how to reset rest RCD switch that has tripped.
  • Then, plug in each appliance one at a time until the RCD trips. This will help you identify which appliance is causing the problem.
  • If you can’t identify which appliance is causing the issue, call a qualified electrician to inspect your appliances and electrical system. It could be a problem with old appliances such as an old washing machine tripping RCD or faults in the wiring.

2. Moisture or dampness

Another possible reason why your RCD keeps tripping is if there is any moisture or dampness around your electrical circuits, as it can also cause a current leakage. This is usually as a result of a build-up of condensation, so it’s important to keep your circuit breakers and other electrical components clean and dry.

What to Do

  • Check for any moisture or dampness around your electrical panel, the RCD device itself, and other components of the circuit or circuits.
  • Switch off power and dry the affected parts or places.
  • Fix the source of the moisture problem to prevent it from happening again.
  • Change the affected parts if damaged by the moisture to avoid further tripping of RCD device.

3. Faulty RCD

It’s also possible that the RCD tripping is caused by the RCD itself. The device could be faulty and needing to be replaced. Because, just like any other electrical component, RCDs can wear out over time and may eventually need to be changed. The tripping RCD could also be faulty from other causes.

What to Do

  • If you suspect that the RCD tripped because it’s faulty, call a qualified electrician to test and replace it if necessary.
  • Ensure that you install a new RCD that is compatible with the electrical system in your home.
  • Ensure, also a high-quality RCD, to avoid the same problem in the future.

4. Incorrect RCD Rating

Proper RCD rating is crucial to its correct operation. If you have an RCD that is not rated correctly for the circuit it is protecting, this can also cause it to trip frequently. For example, if you have a 30mA RCD protecting a circuit with a maximum current of 20mA, the RCD will trip more frequently than normal.

What to Do

  • Check the rating of your RCD and make sure it is compatible with the circuit it is protecting.
  • If it is not, call a qualified electrician to install a new one that is correctly rated.

5. Low-Quality RCD

A possible reason why your RCD keeps tripping is that it is of poor quality. As with anything else, you get what you pay for when it comes to RCDs. There are many different brands and types of RCD on the market, so it’s important to do your research before purchasing one.

What to Do

  • Have the tripping RCD checked and replaced by a qualified electrician.
  • Invest in a high-quality RCD to avoid this problem in the future.
Resetting RCD after tripping
Resetting RCD after tripping

How to Stop RCD Nuisance Tripping

If your residual current device keeps tripping and you can’t figure out why it’s important to get professional help. An electrician will be able to identify the cause of the problem and advise you on the best course of action.

In the meantime, there are a few things you can do to minimize the risk of further RCD trips, especially if the problem involves one of the most common causes: a faulty appliance.

  • Unplug any electrical appliances that are not being used. This will reduce the load on the circuit and may help to prevent further trips.
  • Make sure your appliances and the RCD itself correctly maintained and properly rated.
  • If possible, avoid using electrical appliances in wet areas.
  • If you have any suspicions that there may be a problem with your electrical wiring, do not hesitate to contact a professional electrician. They will be able to carry out any necessary repairs or replacements.


If your RCD keeps tripping, it’s important to find out why. There are several different reasons why an RCD may trip, some of which can be dangerous. The best way to find out the cause of the problem is to get professional help. An electrician will be able to carry out any necessary repairs or replacements. Remember, RCDs are meant to protect you and your family from electrical hazards, so don’t ignore the problem if your RCD keeps tripping.

Picture of William

I am William, Electrical Engineering Author. Dedicated to writing technical articles on Timer Relay, Monitoring Relay, Surge Protection Device and other electrical devices. With 7 years of writing experience, I am committed to providing accurate and in-depth expertise to my readers.


    Dear Sirs,
    Thanks for the info above which is very useful for me to know some knowledge abot RCD, my home three phase RCD found tripped and remain as it is that found unable to reset to “ON” posotion. The unit was not is used for many years until I just reconnected the electrical supply from the main supplier via the meter amd MCCB. posibbly its foulty due to dusty and condensation. I plan to remove and service and please if possible to know is how to service it? appreciate if coud assist me on this.

    Thanks and best regards.

      We have received your message and our product specialist will contact you as soon as possible. Have a good day😀

    Switched on cooker, solid ring plus oven, rcd controlled circuits kept tripping, after a while I kept persisting to untrip it and it stayed put. Would it be the unit the cooker is wired into or the cooker itself that is the problem? Everything else seems to be workin

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