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Power out on a breaker after flipping light switch - breaker did not trip

Power out on a breaker after flipping light switch - breaker did not trip

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  #1  
Old 02-14-10, 11:47 AM
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Power out on a breaker after flipping light switch - breaker did not trip

The other day I turned on the ceiling light in a room (a light/fan combo, but the fan was off); the light came on for a second, then there was a kind of pop from (I think) the switch, but it might have been from the light itself. The light in the room went off along with all of the outlets; all of the lights and outlets also turned off in another room in the house.

I found the breaker that controls these two rooms; it was not tripped, but I tried flipping it off/on anyway, which did nothing.

I tried turning the main power off/on, but this also did nothing.

The circuit breaker does have a Test button on it - when I click this, the breaker trips, but I still cannot get power to the two rooms upstairs.

Have used a voltmeter to test the outlets in the rooms as well as the light switch that caused the power outage; there is no reading on any of them.

Any suggestions on what I can try next? Should I try replacing the circuit breaker? It doesn't sound to me like that is the issue...?

Thank you!
 
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Old 02-14-10, 11:58 AM
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Circuit Problem

Look for a tripped GFCI receptacle. You did not tell us which room is giving the problem. Is it a kitchen or bath room?
 
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Old 02-14-10, 12:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Wirepuller38 View Post
Look for a tripped GFCI receptacle. You did not tell us which room is giving the problem. Is it a kitchen or bath room?

oops, sorry... both are spare bedrooms w/ no baths attached; the only GFCI outlet in the whole house (that I've been able to find) is in the master bathroom; I have tested this, and it is working
 
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Old 02-14-10, 12:08 PM
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What it actually sounds like is that either the switch box or the ceiling box are the first stop on that circuit, and there is a splice there that was not twisted together properly. Ran into this while rewiring my mom's house. There was a juntion box that is in an awkward location, and I was trying to twist 5 wires while reaching around a heating duct. Everything worked until she plugged the vacuum in. The breaker didn't trip, but half the circuit stopped working. I traced the problem back to that junction, and it turned out one of the wires had slipped as I was twisting them, and the whole wire was insulated from the joint except for the very tip. When she turned the vacuum on, it blew out that little piece like a fuse.
 
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Old 02-15-10, 07:35 AM
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Originally Posted by JerseyMatt View Post
What it actually sounds like is that either the switch box or the ceiling box are the first stop on that circuit, and there is a splice there that was not twisted together properly. Ran into this while rewiring my mom's house. There was a juntion box that is in an awkward location, and I was trying to twist 5 wires while reaching around a heating duct. Everything worked until she plugged the vacuum in. The breaker didn't trip, but half the circuit stopped working. I traced the problem back to that junction, and it turned out one of the wires had slipped as I was twisting them, and the whole wire was insulated from the joint except for the very tip. When she turned the vacuum on, it blew out that little piece like a fuse.
Thanks for the suggestions... JerseyMatt, just to be clear, you're suggesting that the problem might be in the box that houses the connections for the entire room, correct? Not just the wiring of the ceiling fan?

Sounds like I'm going to need an electrician for this one...
 
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Old 02-15-10, 08:34 AM
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It's wherever the POP came from.. It's PROBABLY in the ceiling box where the fan is. It could be as simple as when the fan was installed, the wiring wasn't twisted together properly before the wirenut was put on. It's something easy to check out before you call an electrician. If you take the wirenuts off and see any insulation twisted into where bare wire should be, or see any blackening or melting, or maybe even a wirenut came loose or off, you know that's the problem, and you could fix it yourself. If that doesn't resolve the problem, or you're not comfortable doing it, then call an electrician.
 
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Old 02-15-10, 09:03 AM
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Cool - I will try it tonight.
Thanks again for the suggestions, everyone
 
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