Power out in exterior workshop


Old 06-07-18, 12:43 PM
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Power out in exterior workshop

I have a free-standing workshop and the power is out. I can't figure out which breaker inside goes to it. After that, how do I go about diagnosing the problem? (Breaker bad, underground wire cut, etc)
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Old 06-07-18, 12:53 PM
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Tracing a dead circuit can be tricky.

My first step would be to figure out how power gets to the workshop -- conduit, direct burial cable, etc.

Then I would look for any recent digging along that path. For example, one time I was troubleshooting some ground lights at a commercial property and exactly between the last working light and the first non-working light, there was a freshly planted tree. Guess what? Yup.

If there's no fresh digging, I'd go to the workshop and find the first spot where power comes in. Should be a disconnect or a small panel most likely. Find the wires feeding in. Are they hot?

If yes, then troubleshoot within the workshop. If no, then note the colors and numbers of wires (i.e. one black, one red, one white, one bare). Then go to the panel and look for a similar set of wires going out of the panel. If you find a match, are the wires hot leaving the panel? i.e. do you get rated voltage at the breaker(s), if there is a junction before it goes underground do you get rated voltage at the junction?

That will tell you whether to look inward or outward.

If you're hot inside and not hot outside, my money is on a new tree.
Old 06-07-18, 02:56 PM
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This may be as simple as a tripped gfi.
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