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Thread: No power

  1. #1
    Vince Santos's Avatar
    Vince Santos Guest

    Question No power

    Today I lost power to the master bedroom. Initially I thought it might be a tripped breaker or even a bad breaker. When I went down to check the main service equipment I found the breaker to be in the on position so I tripped it and reset it anyway. That didn't work so I removed the conductor and attached it to the 15 amp breaker below just to see if the breaker was bad but still no power. I checked the conductors with a sniffer and I do have power but none in the bedroom.

    The only thing that happened was the power went out a couple days ago but when it came back on everything worked, including the master bedroom. I'm probably going to have to call an electrician in but do any of you have any ideas what may be causing this?

    Thanks,
    Vince

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: No power

    The bedroom is downstream of a device that has either failed, or has a loose connection, most likely. Start checking all the receptacles nearby for the failure point.

    Dom.


  3. #3
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    Default Re: No power

    If you panel is like most, it is *VERY* *POORLY* identified as to what the circuits are for. In which case you would need to do some tracing back, as Dom said.

    If (but very unlikely) your panel is properly labeled, you should no which breakers control what and where. You would still need to do some tracing back, but it would be a heck of a lot easier and less time consuming.

    Is, perchance, your master bedroom off a GFCI circuit? That would make it just too easy, though.

    Does *everything* not work in the master bedroom, or just the lights, or just the receptacle outlets or just ... ?

    Have you checked *ALL* the other lights and receptacle outlets in the house and are they all working?

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  4. #4
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    Default Re: No power

    Check the outlets first, if you have a non-contact indicator it is much easier. Find the last working outlet(s) between the panel and the problem which is on that circuit. Most electricians are cheap and lazy (as am I), so concentrate first on the straightest line between the panel and problem. It might be something as simple as a back-stabbed outlet that has lost the continuity to the wire downstream. Leave all the lights/load on in the problem area and watch (or have someone watch and call out) Insert a tester and wiggle. If you get any response in the problem area, you have found your problem, if not, then you have to dig a little deeper.
    Jim

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Dallas, Texas

  5. #5
    Byron Lentz's Avatar
    Byron Lentz Guest

    Default Re: No power

    You know, sometimes you just have to write the check. Call an electrician.


  6. #6
    Tim Moreira's Avatar
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    Default Re: No power

    You know, sometimes you just have to write the check. Call an electrician.
    Maybe, but as a professional HI, you should know a little bit about how electric runs and you should be able to troubleshoot it your self. Even if you can't, give it the old college try. If you fail, so what. At least you tried. All is cost you was an hour or two of your time.

    I would look at this like a challenge and try to figure it out.

    Of course I'm also a full time hospital maintenance mechanic and I get calls every night to troubleshoot problems out.

    Ask questions, seek advise. I would not give up that easy.


  7. #7
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    Default Re: No power

    I agree with Tim.

    As an HI, if you succeed, you will have gained knowledge toward your profession.

    If you do not succeed, call the electrician and follow/help/hinder him/her, you will then gain knowledge toward your profession.

    Trying is a win/win situation. Think of it as OJT for a reasonable client who has reasonable expectations of what you can do.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  8. #8
    Vince Santos's Avatar
    Vince Santos Guest

    Default Re: No power

    I have replaced a few receptacles with the stab lock option and the power to the room did come on for a few minutes but went out again. I figured I missed one and sure enough found one behind the dresser that was stab lock and replaced that as well. In all I have replaced all six in the room but still with no luck. I'm still working on it and now I just need to make sure I wired them all correctly.

    What a pain.


  9. #9
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    Lightbulb Re: No power

    Vince it would be the first outlet from the breaker that feeds the rest. I had all outlets in my bedroom go out before and that was the problem.
    I hope you have the new kind and not the stablock. I also cut the ends off mine and re-strip for fresh copper and it's less prone to be weekend from the past connection.

    Mike Schulz License 393
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    www.houseinspections.com

  10. #10
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    Default Re: No power

    Vince, your an old pro at changing out stab-loc outlets by now
    Remember there may be outlets in another room that may be on the same circuit.
    Jim

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Dallas, Texas

  11. #11
    Lee Nettnin's Avatar
    Lee Nettnin Guest

    Smile Re: No power

    I had this happen once and had to track it down (took me about a half hour), but I found a GFCI duplex had tripped and was feeding the entire bedroom.


  12. #12
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    Default Re: No power

    Vince,
    One other suggestion is to go all the way back to the breaker. Take it out, strip the wires and reconnect. Leave it off and go check every receptacle in the house. For your own sanity, get rid of the stab locs.

    The only reason some people get lost in thought is because it's unfamiliar territory.
    - Paul Fix

  13. #13
    Bruce Thomas's Avatar
    Bruce Thomas Guest

    Default Re: No power

    Vince,

    No one has mentioned an open common. While you are doing all of this check the white wires too.

    Bruce


  14. #14
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    Default Re: No power

    Vince, we just had similar issues corrected in our house about a month or so ago but on a larger scale. The problem we were having was dim lights in some rooms, full power in some rooms, and no power on other rooms. There was no rhyme or reason to why some things worked and others did not. We were doing laundry at the time so I shut off the electric clothes dryer and the basement lights went out. Hmmmmmm. So, I turned the dryer back on and the lights went on. What the %$*&??????

    The long and short of it was we had a connection go bad on the exterior service drop at the weatherhead (I believe it was the neutral that had gone bad). And since you said you lost power a couple days ago, which I assume was due to weather conditions, something might have wiggled loose during high winds. If you have a digital meter face on your meter box, see if you have any readout or an unusually low readout. If you have no readout or and unusually low readout, I'd bet the issue is at your service drop. I called our electric utility company and they fixed it at no charge to us.

    Last edited by Nick Ostrowski; 04-16-2007 at 05:03 PM. Reason: clarification

  15. #15
    Vince Santos's Avatar
    Vince Santos Guest

    Default Re: No power

    Problem solved.

    Last night I noticed a night light in another bedroom was not working and sure enough when I tested the receptacle it had no power. So after replacing the receptacle, which of course was backstabbed, everything worked fine.

    Thanks for all the help.


  16. #16
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    Default Re: No power

    Vince, I'll bet you now have a greater understanding and appreciation of the possible problems and remedies on outlet circuits!
    Glad you solved the problem, now think about how many other back-stabbed switches and outlets you have left to replace.
    Jim

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Dallas, Texas

  17. #17
    Vince Santos's Avatar
    Vince Santos Guest

    Default Re: No power

    I picked up about 20 extra receptacles that I plan in install this week.


  18. #18
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    Default Re: No power

    Don't forget the switches, they are likely back stabbed too.
    Jim

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Dallas, Texas

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