Outlet and Fusebox issues.

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  #1  
Old 12-29-12, 08:28 AM
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Outlet and Fusebox issues.

Hey all,

I live in an older house that still has a fuse box, and cloth covered wires.
The other night I accidentally cracked one of the older outlets in my living room (which was already in bad shape.)
It began making a buzzing noise so unscrewing its fuse and installed a new outlet (I do have some electrical experience).
So after installing the new outlet, I screwed back in the fuze (30amp) and it blew. So I uninstalled the new outlet and placed wire nuts on all 4 of the outlet wires, as well as electrical tape, then placed a new 30amp fuze back in.
The original outlet (obviously), the other 2 in the living room, the one in the bathroom, and 4 out of the 5 in the master bed do not work.
outlets in bed 2, 3, dining, breakfast, laundry, kitchen, and sun porch all work, As well as all lights, fans and appliances.
There is still current coming from the fuse slot that blew, so I am at a loss as to why im not receiving power to the other outlets. ANy help with this would really be appricated.
-Thanks for the help.
 
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Old 12-29-12, 09:09 AM
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You fried the fuseholder because you should be using a 15 amp fuse.
Possibly a 20 amp fuse if it's #12 wiring but it doesn't look like it.

A 30 amp fuse is like putting a penny behind the fuse...way to big.

Your problem in the receptacle box is that the insulation has broken off at the clamps in the box allowing all the wires to short out.

The problem is you have two white wires and two blacks wires at the receptacle.
One comes in with power and the other sends it out on its way.
With the wires open like they are now....everything beyond that box will be dead.

It will be very difficult to repair that wiring.
If I were to fix it.....I carry heat shrink tubing in my service truck that I use to slide over the wire like a new piece of insulation. Still not easy. Takes time and patience.
 
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Old 12-29-12, 09:27 AM
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Just to add I doubt the receptacles are correct either. They are for use on grounded circuits only* (unless protected by a GFCI and so marked). While not the cause of your problem you need to replace the receptacle with an ungrounded receptacle. Also the new receptacle is 20 amp. You only need a 15 amp.

There also seem to be other over fused circuits that need to be corrected from what I see. This time you fried a fuse holder. Next time it may be your house.

*Even if you had old style BX that would not be considered a reliable ground because no bonding wire.
 
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Old 12-29-12, 06:39 PM
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I uninstalled the new outlet and placed wire nuts on all 4 of the outlet wires, as well as electrical tape, then placed a new 30amp fuze back in.
The original outlet (obviously), the other 2 in the living room, the one in the bathroom, and 4 out of the 5 in the master bed do not work.
outlets in bed 2, 3, dining, breakfast, laundry, kitchen, and sun porch all work, As well as all lights, fans and appliances.
There is still current coming from the fuse slot that blew, so I am at a loss as to why im not receiving power to the other outlets.
You should not have any 30A fuses on any general purpose circuit (one serving lights and receptacles). The first thing to do is to replace any fuse in that fuse block that is larger than 20A with a 20A fuse.

If installing a new fuse in the circuit serving the receptacle you were working on restored power to some other locations that were without power until you did that, then you're right. There is power coming through that fuse. As PJ said,
Originally Posted by PJmax
With the wires open like they are now....everything beyond that box will be dead.
Anything that came back on when you installed the new fuse is wired between the fuse and the box with the open wires.

You may have a crack in the insulation on one or more of the wires in that box. It's not possible to determine that from either your description of events or your pictures. But you gan check that out yourself.

Once you have power back to everything that had power before, only with 20A fuses, remove the fuse from the top left holder. Then inspect the wires in the open box for insulation damage. If you see any, you can use heat shrink or cold shrink or high-quality electrical tape to repair it, but those can be tricky to do well, as PJ suggested. Another way is to use liquid electrical tape, which is readily available and easy to use. Just get a bottle of black and a bottle of white and follow the directions on the bottles.

After you've made sure that the insulation is OK on all four wires, use two wire nuts to join black-to-black and white-to-white in that box, and install a 20A fuse. If the fuse blows, remove it and check the insulation again, particularly where the wires are clamped as they enter the box. When you've got the power holding on a 20A fuse, take the fuse out, install the receptacle and see if everything works again.

I think you have a good ground because you blew the fuse. But the real way to find out is to use an analog multimeter to test for 120V from the incoming hot wire to the box.
 
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