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Paragon Electrical Arc Issue?

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Had a bit of a scare on the weekend.  I have a Paragon Model LT-3K kiln, and have run it for three years without much issue.  I was firing cone 06 on the weekend and was moving the top temperature dial from 1 to 2 and I saw a flash on the top side of the kiln while adjusting the knob.  I looked into the kiln as the lid was notched open at this point and the top element was on.


I called my local Paragon dealer and they asked if I had vacuumed the coil channels recently, and I replied no.  She said sometimes if a bit of glaze gets in there it can create a small arc.  She said if the element is still working it should be ok.


As the kiln was working fine, and I could not get the flash to occur again (I tried to adjust the temp using the knob up and down) I continued on with the fire.  Fast-forward 5 hours, the lid is closed, and plugs are in.  The kiln is not at Max heat yet but pretty close.  As I move the top knob to 5.5 on the dial setting a large flash occurs, very bright, with an audible pop.  The flash (what I think is an arc) then knocks the power to the whole house out.


The kiln is in the garage and I have a dedicated 30A breaker for it.  I went to the basement and tripped the breaker restoring power.  I went back to the garage, the kiln didn’t reach temp so the kiln sitter had not tripped, the power light however was not on.  I unplugged the kiln, and let it cool.


Yesterday I unloaded it and there was nothing touching the walls or coils in the kiln.  I don’t feel that I have glaze in any of the coil channels.  I am at a bit of a loss to what may have happened.  Paragon is closed today as is my local dealer.  I plan to have an electrician look at it, but would like to give some direction to him.  Any thoughts on what may have happened?





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Sounds like your switch fried. Unplug the kiln, open up the control box and see what you find. If it arced and flipped the breaker, you'll probably be able to see where it went bad. Depending on how the kiln is assembled, you may need to remove the outer plate where the sitter claw comes through, and remove the screws holding the sitter tube in place. Often there's not enough wire in the box to be able to remove it with the sitter tube attached.

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