Please Help

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  #1  
Old 12-26-04, 08:12 PM
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Angry Please Help

I have a strange problem. I have 2 outlets in the masterbathroom and one outlet in the guest bathroom. They are both on the same floor, and they seem to run on the same line. All 3 outlets are not working. I have checked the breaker box and nothing is wrong. I dont even know where to begin. any help would be great.

Thanks, Chef of the future.
 
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  #2  
Old 12-26-04, 10:49 PM
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You have a tripped GFCI receptacle. It's probably in the garage behind all that stuff you've got stored there. Find it and press the reset button.

If you post back and tell me you don't have a GFCI in the garage, I'm just going to tell you to look again, so let's get that out of the way all at once.

What year was your house built?
 
  #3  
Old 12-27-04, 07:54 AM
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Smile Thanks From Chef Ric

Thank you very much, you were on the MONEY with that one.

Thanks again and happy holidays.
 
  #4  
Old 12-27-04, 08:17 AM
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Originally Posted by John Nelson
You have a tripped GFCI receptacle. It's probably in the garage behind all that stuff you've got stored there.
John, obviously a great call by you, and apparently a common situation if you diagnosed it that quickly from Ric's description, but why in the world would a house be wired so that a GFCI in the garage would be feeding power to two different bathroom's receptacles?

Joe
 
  #5  
Old 12-27-04, 09:18 AM
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To save money. Often, all outside and bathroom plugs will be on one GFCI. The GFCI will usually be on the plug that's closest to the breaker box which is usually in the garage. This can easily be changed if the setup becomes annoying.

Doug M.
 
  #6  
Old 12-27-04, 09:28 AM
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thanks again

Thanks again, all this info can be very usefull to me in the future.

Thanks and have a great holiday season.

Ric
 
  #7  
Old 12-27-04, 10:33 AM
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I just wanted to say to John Nelson that your reply cracked me up. You and I have been hanging around in here for some years now, and this problem is usually the same - a GFCI in a place that nobody using logic would ever guess to look. But as Doug M. went on to explain, logic from an electrical construction cost-saving point of view turns the whole equation on its ear. It just, understandably, confuses the homeowner. I think everybody can agree that least expensive is not always the best design for the end-user.

Juice
 
  #8  
Old 12-27-04, 11:02 AM
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If the house was built in the last eight years, the GFCI in the garage will no longer control the bathroom receptacles. But the garage answer is good for almost all homes built between 1978 and 1996. 1978 was the year that the GFCI requirement was added for both garages and bathrooms. At that time, wire was considerably cheaper than GFCIs, so it made a lot of sense to conserve on the number of GFCI devices needed. But beginning in 1996, bathroom receptacles were no longer allowed to share a circuit with things outside the bathrooms. You still do, however, often find that the receptacles in all the bathrooms are protected by one GFCI in one bathroom.
 
  #9  
Old 12-27-04, 11:13 AM
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Back in the day , GFCI receptacles were fairly expensive. GFCI breakers were common and weren't cheap either. The first house I had built in '84 had one GFCI receptacle in the bathroom that controlled all the outside plugs. There was no garage and the breaker panel was outside. The builder bragged about his generosity and showed me that GFCI plug about 5 times during the walk through. My next house had a GFCI breaker that controlled all the bathrooms and outside plugs. It tripped every time it rained and I often had to make my way to the breaker panel in my bath robe to reset it so I could shave or dry my hair. The house we built 5+ years ago has more GFCI plugs than I can count on one hand. They aren't as cheap as standard plugs, but much less than they used to be. My first garage GFCI controls all the outside plugs. The 3 bathrooms are all connected to one GFCI in the upstairs bathroom. If we had ever had a problem with this, I would just have to buy 2 more GFCI plugs and make a few wiring changes to get a GFCI in each bathroom so it could be reset right at the source, but the only GFCI we ever seem to trip is the one the outside plugs attach to. In Texas, fire ants often get into outside electrical stuff and cause ground faults... Yankees beware, they're moving North...

Houses around here are going up streets at a time and builders are cutting costs any place they can. Things like GFCI placement are no big deal to change if consumers are paying attention as their houses are being built, but most people don't spend a lot of time thinking about stuff like that. I did, but it's important to me. The mechanical systems in my house are fairly well designed, but we won't talk about the majorly crooked wall corner that my wife sees every time she sits at the kitchen table. Looks like the contractor was drunk when he cut the wall board. Or the half linen closet upstairs that could have been twice as big for no more cost if we had been paying more attention... Architects design, contractors build, buyers complain, contractors fix. No one thinks.

Doug M.
 
  #10  
Old 12-27-04, 12:26 PM
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Doug M.,

I enjoyed your story and the description of your house construction. Just wanted to say bummer about your fire ants. But I'm not too worried at the moment about thier northward migration. It was 13 degrees F when I woke up this morning in my little suburb of Syracuse, NY, and one week ago this morning we awoke to 6 degrees below zero! I would not imagine those nasty little guys will adapt to that sort of extreme in my lifetime.

Take care.

Juice
 
  #11  
Old 12-27-04, 01:37 PM
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Thanks! I tend to ramble, especially this time of year while I'm sitting here not wanting to get my work done. This is a great forum. Unlike some of the other forums I've been involved in, this one has a high maturity level and level headed advice. Definitely a credit to the moderator(s) who keep(s) things on track and provide accurate input. John Nelson, I imagine some of our questions can be quite annoying, but you're always there with the right answer. Thank you. You provide more of a service than you probably know and are a credit to your profession.

Juice, I lived in Binghamton for 21 years... I remember... so how's the sledding? But if a fire ant can crawl into a boat in the middle of the biggest lake in the DFW Metroplex, a little cold weather won't stop them. They’re going to eat all the roaches and take over the world eventually.

Doug M.
 
  #12  
Old 12-27-04, 01:55 PM
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I tend to go on a bit too long from time to time myself. I have spent a lot of time in Binghamton and Johnson City in my electrical designs for clients of the engineering firm I work for. They get less snow than we do up here in Syracuse. But we don't have the mighty Susquehanna River threatening to wipe out our town. Outdoor electrical controls I designed had to be mounted in enclosures raised above the 100 year flood elevation. But to answer your question, so far the sledding kind of stinks. We haven't had much snow thus far and had another brown Christmas this year.

And while fire ants sound like nasty little varmints, I think I sort of like any critter that eats roaches!

Oh, uh, and I'm happy that Chef Ric's GFCI problem worked out.

Juice
 
  #13  
Old 12-27-04, 02:06 PM
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Okay, you guys sure know how to play close to the edge. You either have to say something nice about me (Doug's approach), or mention something electrical at least in passing (Juice's approach) or your post gets the ax.
 
  #14  
Old 12-28-04, 01:28 PM
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OK, I once had this girlfriend (who used electricity)...

Sorry, John, sometimes the personalities in this forum (who use electricity) are interesting folks and we strike up some interesting exchanges on the side. I will, however, try to refrain from religion (churches, synagogues and mosques use electricity) or politics (who are on TV and we can't really find out what's going on without electricity).

Keep up the good work.

;-)

Juice
 
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