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No power to bedroom - no tripped breakers, no GCFI untested

No power to bedroom - no tripped breakers, no GCFI untested

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  #1  
Old 01-23-16, 03:04 PM
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No power to bedroom - no tripped breakers, no GCFI untested

I pray to the DIY electrical gurus to give some more help if possible. Our power went out in the bedroom of our condo due to some sort of issue surrounding a space heater. When I checked the breakers - nothing is tripped, GFCI - everything is working well and there is not a secret one hiding anywhere (even checked the detached garage across the street to be 100% thorough). I had my father come out and check out the outlets and switches to determine if we were dealing with bad outlets and such and there was no power getting to the bedroom or any associated switches or outlets along the way. There was power coming from the breaker panel and we checked the breaker connections and even swapped wires on two breakers to be sure the breaker and connection was good.

NOW WHAT? We have no idea how there could be electric coming from the panel and not ending up somewhere.

Any ideas would be greatly appreciated. I am hoping that I am not dealing with a busted wire somewhere in the ceiling/walls.

Thanks in advance!
 
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  #2  
Old 01-23-16, 03:35 PM
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Checking how?
Need to be using a a real volt OHM meter.
Any space heater needs a 20 amp. circuit 12-2 wire 20 amp. breaker.
Back stabbed outlets?
By far we have far more fire calls in the the colder months from space heaters then any other cause.
 
  #3  
Old 01-23-16, 03:46 PM
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Do you own the condo? Is it part of a larger building. Assuming your father used a multimeter what was his voltage readings at each receptacle. He needs to have checked hot to neutral, hot to ground, ground to neutral. If that hasn't been done that is the first step. Also any back stabs need to be moved to the screws and any wirenuts redone.
 
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Old 01-24-16, 06:50 AM
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Checking using a real meter (he does work with electric and control panels in his day job). The space heater was on a 20 amp breaker at the time, but we had the thought that had it been tripped over the life of the 26 years the original owner was there that it could be weaker than a true 20 amps. The outlets are back stabbed, but we pulled each one and were testing at the wires, not the outlets.
 
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Old 01-24-16, 06:53 AM
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We do own the condo and it is part of a larger building with 4 on each floor and 3 floors. At each receptacle we got nothing on the wires or on the switches which made us wonder where the power from the panel was coming to first. We checked every known outlet, switch, and light on the non-working circuit and there was no power coming through. I will check with him to see if he checked all 3 ways you mentioned as he is coming back over in a few minutes. The backstabs will be redone as we were already going to get new receptacles and switches for each room as some are neutral, white, off-white, etc. It will be done correctly when we switch them.
 
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Old 01-24-16, 07:10 AM
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Are there any "common" circuits in the condo complex? Outdoor lighting, hall/stair lighting, common laundry rooms, pool receptacles? Is there a panel for the condo commons?


Quite the opposite, long ago, I had a rather high electric bill in my apartment. Come to find out one circuit in my panel ran the hall lights, hallway strip heating, laundry room and exterior security lights. I didn't need the receptacles for a while, so I flipped the breaker. Talk about running around with their hair on fire, maintenance didn't know what to do.
 
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Old 01-24-16, 07:28 AM
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Not that we are aware of. I plan on pleading to the association for a wiring diagram (probably not going to happen or even still be somewhere it can be found) and we checked the detached garage across the street just to be sure there wasn't a GFCI or anything tied in there. My father checked the outside meters and there are individual disconnection master switches for each meter. When walking in and out I checked for any GFCI outlets along the hallways and there is nothing else out in the common areas. Each condo has its own laundry hook up. There also has not been any crazy running around (yet?).
 
  #8  
Old 01-24-16, 07:44 AM
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The outlets are back stabbed, but we pulled each one and were testing at the wires, not the outlets.
All back-stabbed connections need to be changed to the screw terminals.

Every connection in every box on the circuit is a suspect. A failed connection affects everything downstream from that connection.

Reset the breaker by turning it off and then on.
 
  #9  
Old 01-24-16, 09:52 AM
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As I said in the original post, we have already ruled out a breaker issue and the backstabs were checked at the wire to ensure that we were getting no power to the wire and not dealing with a poor connection or receptacle.

Ray - We checked the connections each way and there is nothing going in or out anywhere. We are still unable to locate the point of entry for the circuit. Some electricians had us check the neutral at the box and the neutral running for that circuit showed no charge once removed from the bus. So this would mean a dead neutral somewhere correct? We also tried to bypass the neutral and run to ground to test if we could get power and there was nothing for that on the switches and neutral clusters we tried that for.
 
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Old 01-24-16, 10:10 AM
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Eric, I know it sounds as if we are harping, but you just haven't gone far enough. You recognize this in your post. Somewhere the circuit enters the equation. Wherever that is, you will find either a lifted neutral or a hot wire not making connection. It is tedious at best, but I feel you will find it if you dig deep enough.
 
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Old 01-24-16, 10:29 AM
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My father checked the outside meters and there are individual disconnection master switches for each meter
Ok, there are individual breaker disconnects at each meter, that is a good thing. Exactly where is the breaker panel in relation to your condo, it should be inside your condo.
 
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Old 01-24-16, 11:26 AM
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the backstabs were checked at the wire
If it is a backstab problem testing at the wires may not show it. My tests were using the slots on the receptacles with the receptacles in place. ALL wires on the circuit including those on working receptacles on the circuit must be moved to the screws.
 
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