Hot wire dies after changing an old receptacle with a new


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Old 08-06-14, 11:45 PM
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Hot wire dies after changing an old receptacle with a new

Greetings, this is my first post. I decided to create a thread about my concerns for one of my bathroom outlets. It seems that ever since I replaced my old light flip switch with a modern looking one the black hot wire that used to connect to the original receptacle stopped working. This was also around the same time when I decided to install a GFCI from a standard duplex outlet as well in the very same room, which also has the same problem. The weird thing is that with along side the deadwire, there is another outlet that still works, and that happens to be the exhaust fan. For the record, I've replaced three receptacles in my bedroom with no problems but for some reason I cannot get the other two to work. I've tried looking for known issues, such making sure the circuit breaks were on (not tripped) and wire configuration errors. All in all, everything seems to be fine apart from the dead black wires.


Here's a spec of the two outlets: (The house was built in 1982)

-early 1980 dulpex receptacle replaced - was connected with two neutral wires and two hot wires (all dead)

-early 1980s flip swtich receptacle replcaed- was connected with a secondary hot wire and black wire (dead hot wire)

Any comments would greatly be appreciated.
 
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Old 08-07-14, 02:58 AM
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Has the house been upgraded with GFCI receptacles? Are there any in other bathrooms that may have tripped? Have you completely turned off the associated breaker and turned it back on?
 
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Old 08-07-14, 03:22 AM
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A wire may have broken inside its insulation. This is not easy to find. Fortunately(?) it would be in the end you were manipulating to reconnect to the new receptacle, not inside the wall.
 
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Old 08-07-14, 06:43 AM
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Here's a spec of the two outlets: (The house was built in 1982)
In 1982 bathroom receptacles and outside receptacles with direct grade access were required to have GFCI protection, but bathrooms at that time were not required to be on their own circuit and could have been fed from anywhere. Do you have a GFCI circuit breaker feeding the bathrooms? GFCI receptacles were relatively new in 1982, but you could have one at the main panel or outside that was providing the GFCI protection for the bathrooms. Garages and unfinished basements were not required to have GFCI protection in 1982 so I'd be looking mostly outside for a tripped GFCI receptacle.
 
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Old 08-07-14, 07:37 AM
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I did read many articles and forum posts about possible GFCI receptacles going off in homes as being the main culprit. As far as I know and checked, the only GFCI receptacle in the house was the new one I was trying to wire. I couldn't find any within the house.
 
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Old 08-07-14, 07:43 AM
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I did go in the attic on top of the bathroom area where the wire may have been broken or cut yesterday, but I couldn't really find anything abnormal above the insulation. Everything seemed intact from my understanding. I even removed the medicine cabinet and checked behind the wall directly where the two main sites of dead hot wire feeding into the circuit box were and it appeared that it was all spick and span.
 
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Old 08-07-14, 07:48 AM
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GFCI circuit breaker? That sounds very interesting. I'm pretty sure that could be the case. The lights in front of my house also went out every since I changed those receptacles. Though, i'm not sure how to reset it or them if I found the circuit breaker(s). Any ideas on where it or they could possibly be?
 
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Old 08-07-14, 08:06 AM
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As for additional information, the circuit breaker that is connected to the lights and newly installed GFCI in my bathroom is also wired to the exhaust fan in my bathroom, which still works. It's really odd how one receptacle has power and the others do not after changing the old receptacles.
 
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Old 08-07-14, 10:31 AM
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the circuit breaker that is connected to the lights and newly installed GFCI in my bathroom is also wired to the exhaust fan in my bathroom, which still works. It's really odd how one receptacle has power and the others do not after changing the old receptacles.
What you describe sounds like a tripped GFCI receptacle. Have you looked at all the outside receptacles to see if any are the GFCI type?
 
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Old 08-07-14, 02:15 PM
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GFCI receptacles were not installed in the interior of the home, though I figured last week that it would be proper to start installing them. That's when this situation occurred. I've been looking into secret subpanels in the attic containing GFCI circuit breakers, which could be responsible for my problems since my home is a bit outdated. By the way, I appreciate all the comments and thank you all for responding.
 
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Old 08-07-14, 03:13 PM
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Often the GFCI turns up behind something that hasn't been moved in years. Others have found them behind extra plug-in adapters that cover the receptacle.

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Old 08-07-14, 06:08 PM
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GFCI receptacles were not installed in the interior of the home,
Outside........WHAT ABOUT OUTSIDE??? Do you have no receptacles outside??
 
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Old 08-07-14, 06:13 PM
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A house of that vintage should have had GFI protection for that circuit. Look in the basement, bathrooms, garage areas..
 
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Old 08-07-14, 07:44 PM
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As from my previous post, there are no GFCI receptacles at all. Both interior and exterior. I've checked the garage areas and bathroom areas many times and there aren't any GFCIs at all. I don't have a basement as well. My best bet is that there is something such as a subpanel in the attic somewhere that I have yet to find. Come on, i'm not that clumsy.
 
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Old 08-07-14, 07:48 PM
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Thanks for the tip, ray2047. I have checked hidden areas around my house that have plug-in adapters. Unluckily, I have stumbled across nothing but regular non-GFCI receptacles. I may have to hire a electrician for this matter. Most appreciated all.
 
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Old 08-08-14, 06:56 AM
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Please update us if you do hire this out.
 
 

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