Failed outlets

Reply

  #1  
Old 02-19-01, 07:36 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: massachusetts
Posts: 589
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
HI,
I got involved with a homeowner trying to trouble shoot an electrical problem and if anyone could offer an insight I would appreciate it as I told him I would post this for him.
He installed new outlets through out his house. He tested each outlet as he changed it and he claims each one worked.

Five days later, two over counter outlets in the kitchen failed. Their is a white wire on each silver screw and a black wire on each gold screw on each outlet. With a meter, we could conclude that one outlet was feeding the other. He said that every other oulet in the house works so we wondered a bit why each oulet had two connected wires. He also didn't notice if the old outlets had the connecting bar intact. We found a blown fuse in the box. Replaced it with a known good fuse and no power was coming out onto the connected black hot wire at the box. Figureing it was a bad fuse socket, he disconnected the black and ran it to another fuse rated the same. (after disconnecting that black wire.) Still no power at the outlets. By testing with a meter it was concluded that their was not a direct path from the fuse box to the outlets. We looked though out the house for a secondary box or GFI to no avail.
1 failed outlets
2 both outlets are connected at all screws
3 No apparant sub boxes
4 Found a bad feed on the fuse box though switching to a known good produced no results.
6 Though new wireing is apparant in the house, these outlets have the old style silver colored jacket like the original.
7 I hope he had the radio ON when he switched the circuit.
Thank You in advance
StephenS
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 02-20-01, 07:11 AM
Wgoodrich
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
You have two cables [2blacks, 2whites,2bares] in a box when you have a daisy chain affect feeding the next receptacle from that receptacle. Power in and power out.

I would check the nearest receptacle that is still working. I suspect a power out wire is not making connection.

You may also have a switch receptacle in these circuits that when you turned on the switch the fuse blew. Try turning off all switches, replace the fuses in the fuse box or take the cover off and use a voltage tester to see if you have power from the screw of the fuse to the bare that has the white wires in them. You may find one that is dead but looks good.

Let us know what you find we may be able to help more then

Wg

 
  #3  
Old 02-21-01, 01:37 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: massachusetts
Posts: 589
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Hi Wg,
Thanks for the reply. At one that morning I realized we had disconnected the feed wire from one oulet to the other and therefore the test he did by changing the circuit to another fuse was null. I also wondered if we had overlooked the obvious that their was indeed a bad connection from a feed oulet. To make a long story short, I called him and let him know of your suggestions and our testing errors and offered to help as now it was more about the challenge. We finally determined by using a 12 volt test light, makita battery and extension cord that the oulets did indeed fall on the dead fuse sockets circuit. He pulled out the plastic fuse holder which had two fuse sockets figureing it was the bad part. However with some testing we realized that the section of bar that the plastic fuse holder plugs into in the box was the failed component. The puzzling part to us is this... Their is a one piece circuit breaker with two 100 amp feeds at the top of the box. Their is then a copper bar running down the left side of the box and one down the right. This fuse holder is the one directly under the main circiut breaker with four more under it. Each one below works on both sides. Their was only no power on the bar for the one inch where this particular fuse socket plugged in on the right bar. Directly below this one inch section their is a second bar behind the first bar which appears to make full contact with the front bar. Though again the one inch section that is not backed is dead. If you again have any thoughts, I would appreciate them.
P.S. Repairable or not, is the better solution for him to have a new box installed with all circuit breakers as his box is presently tapped out completely??
 
  #4  
Old 02-21-01, 05:14 PM
Wgoodrich
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
I suspect you have a main fuse blown by your discription. If one of the bus bars is dead then follow the bar up or down and see if you see a fuse block that has either 100 amp or 60 amp or 50 amp fuses in it. Switch the fuses with each other and plug the fuse block back in. See if you buss bar energizes. If it does energize then replace the bad fuse in the fuse block.

Let us know what you find.

Wg
 
  #5  
Old 02-21-01, 05:25 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: massachusetts
Posts: 589
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Hi Wg,
I just want to make sure I understand correctly so I can pass on this information. Above the two bus bars, their is a one piece plastic housing with two 100 amp breakers. I had assumed these were feeding both bars. Also only 1 inch at the top of the right bus bar does not have energy. Does your reply intend that a seperate fuse being fed by the main could energize that 1 inch on the bar where the fuse block plugs in? What looks like the same bar though it doubles up below this one inch line continues to four more blocks which are energized.
Thank You in advance
Stephen
PS Their was a pull out fuse holder in the box with two shotgun shell looking fuses which now I wonder if they could have been feeding the one inch spot on the bar.
 
  #6  
Old 02-21-01, 05:32 PM
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
Those would be cartrige fuses, how do they look, meter, etc.?
 
  #7  
Old 02-24-01, 02:59 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: massachusetts
Posts: 589
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
And I'm sure once you find the actual problem you're gonna slap yourself on the forehead and say "How SIMPLE!" Troubleshooting is the hard part and the repair is usually 5% of the time you'll spend on most electrical problems

The above is a quote by juice head from anther post that proved so true....

The Solution: It seams the inductive tester the homeowner used was inaccurate and didn't pick up power in this one fuse socket or ont the bar at this one location leading to the conclusion that the bar was dead. Slap/Slap It turned out that homeowner indeed changed the blown fuse with a known good one, however it was the wrong amperage. The fuse turned out be shorter by a smidge and was not making contact with the center pin.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: