Dead Circuit


  #1  
Old 04-17-04, 10:09 PM
Randy Smith
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Dead Circuit

I have a 30 year old house with alum wiring. One entire circuit suddenly went dead. Nothing had changed, just went dead. The breaker was not tripped. Checked the breaker by switching wires and it is ok. There are no GFIs on the circuit. Circuit is 20 amps with 6 plugs, 2 lighting fixtures and one ceiling fan.

Where do I look from here?
 
  #2  
Old 04-17-04, 10:14 PM
J
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A connection failed. This is not uncommon with aluminum wiring. I suggest you call in professional help since there are many special considerations with aluminum wiring. Consider having all the switches and receptacles in your house corrected with proper devices and connectors. We know how to make aluminum wiring safe today. We didn't 30 years ago. If you do get this done, be sure to get documentation of the work from the electrician and save it to show a prospective buyer some day. It might keep them from running away.
 
  #3  
Old 04-18-04, 10:06 AM
J
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If it is aluminum wire then I think most people use 15 amp breakers even if you have #12 wire. I don't know if it required by code.
 
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Old 04-18-04, 12:28 PM
J
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For aluminum wire, #12 is the minimum size for a 15-amp circuit (and always has been as far as I know).
 
  #5  
Old 04-18-04, 05:24 PM
J
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The point I was trying to make was he should probably change the breaker to a 15 amp. He said the circuit was a 20 amp.
 
  #6  
Old 04-18-04, 05:49 PM
J
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Good catch Joe. I missed that. If he doesn't have 10-gauge wire, he certainly should reduce the breaker to avoid a fire. Sounds like maybe the entire electrical system should be evaluated for safety. If you decide to fix the safety problems, you might consider upgrades at the same time to improve usability.
 
 

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