Bizarre Outlet Failure

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Old 11-17-13, 08:32 PM
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Bizarre Outlet Failure

I was working on fixing the pump on an espresso machine, needing to plug and unplug into an outlet on my kitchen counter. It is possible that water touched contacts inside the espresso machine but when I went to plug it in again, no juice.

Now, all the other kitchen counter wall outlets are working, including a GFI outlet next to the right of the problem outlet, but on the other side of the sink. I suspected a circuit breaker had tripped so down to the panel, but that was not the case. I tested the neighboring GFI and actually all the other GFIs in the kitchen and even the others I have in the house. I am not finding any other circuit or device disrupted by the same outage affecting this outlet (standard 3 prong 15A).

I put the tester to the terminals on the outlet thinking maybe the outlet had failed, but still no AC. Then I shut off all kitchen circuits at the main panel, disconnected the troublesome outlet, returned the breakers to ON and tested the supply line now unattached from the outlet. Still no test for current.

Now I am at wit's end feeling that something tripped, but I have no idea where. Again, nowhere else in the house have I found power interrupted. Any thoughts?
 
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Old 11-17-13, 08:41 PM
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What kind of tester are you using?
 
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Old 11-17-13, 08:47 PM
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just the normal bulb shirt pocket tester. also pluggin in a small lamp fails.
 
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Old 11-17-13, 08:51 PM
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just the normal bulb shirt pocket tester. also pluggin in a small lamp fails.
You need more than a tester, you need to read the voltage between black to white, black to ground and white to ground. My first thougt is a tripped GFCI device, but if that has been ruled out, I'd check voltages and then proceed to pull the device and check connections. Is this a countertop receptacle?
 
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Old 11-17-13, 09:02 PM
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Yes, normal 15A wall 2 outlet 3-prong. I have a multi tester but this suffices to tell me the circuit has no juice. As I said, I touched white and black with the probes, no light.

The symptoms are just like a GFCI tripped or the breaker tripped. It was working, then stopped working suddenly and I attributed it to the appliance I was repairing where water was slightly involved.
 
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Old 11-17-13, 09:14 PM
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As I said, I touched white and black with the probes, no light.
And what did you get when checking black to ground? Assuming this is a countertop receptacle, it should be fed from one of two small appliance branch circuits that feed the countertop receptacles. I believe you said the other receptacles were still working. That means the problem is probably not more than a few feet away either at this receptacle or the receptacle that feeds power to this one.
 
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Old 11-17-13, 09:30 PM
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3ft to the left, but 90 degrees is a working outlet. Black to ground lights the tester. Now back to the inoperable outlet, black to ground, nothing. GFCI is next outlet to the right past the sink. It works fine.
 
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Old 11-17-13, 09:34 PM
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I expected to go downstairs and find a breaker tripped. Boy when you don't find that, scratch your head.
 
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Old 11-18-13, 05:48 AM
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Thanks for your help; solved it! Forgot about that GFCI hidden behind the bread box several outlets away!
 
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Old 11-18-13, 06:39 AM
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Thanks for your help; solved it! Forgot about that GFCI hidden behind the bread box several outlets away!
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Old 11-18-13, 06:47 AM
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Join the club. You would be surprised how many swear there is no tripped GFCI for eight or ten replies and then find it hidden somewhere.
 
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