Outlets not working - What's this box?


Old 08-16-18, 11:10 AM
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Outlets not working - What's this box?

Two outside electrical outlets stopped working. My non-contact tester showed no power at the outlet or the wires. Following the wires to the basement, there was power coming into a junction box (see photo) but no power coming from the box to the wires.

Before I go further on this, I'd appreciate some information on what this box is for. Note that the box has one wire in (bottom left) and three wires out. Two of the wires out go to the non-working outlets and the third wire out has power.


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Last edited by PJmax; 08-16-18 at 08:51 PM. Reason: reoriented/labeled picture
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Old 08-16-18, 03:42 PM
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Without taking cover we can only guess. I would guess it is a junction box where wires were spliced.
Old 08-16-18, 04:03 PM
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Outside receptacles should be protected by a GFCI receptacle in the circuit or a GFCI breaker in the service panel. Look for a tripped device.
Old 08-16-18, 08:52 PM
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Since you have power to that 4" square junction box and there are four cables there...... you have a power cable in, two cables to your receptacles and I'm guessing the fourth cable goes to a switch.

We'd need to see the internal wiring to confirm.
Old 08-17-18, 06:25 AM
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Again, without taking the cover off the junction box we can only guess but I am going to go with what PJMax said.

Power going into the box with one cable, two cables out to receptacles (outdoors) and the 4th cable to a switch (switch loop) so that all the receptacles that are outside can be shut off (no power to them) with the switch.

If it were a tripped GFCI breaker no power would even go to the box and if the receptacles were tripped GFCI power would go to the receptacles at least unless one receptacle is a GFCI protecting another regular receptacle but still would not account for the fact that the two cables in the box do not have power.

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