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D'Olier
 
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Default Basic electric question

As I was plugging something in the other day I saw a little spark and now
the two outlets at that point don't work. I've tried 'tripping' a few of
the switches. Does this usually mean a fuse is gone and I have to replace
something? Or have I just not tripped the right switch.

Thanks.


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Michael Baugh
 
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May have been an outlet linked to a Ground Fault Protection
outlet. Look for a reset button on other outhlets.

D'Olier wrote in message
...
As I was plugging something in the other day I saw a little spark and now
the two outlets at that point don't work. I've tried 'tripping' a few of
the switches. Does this usually mean a fuse is gone and I have to replace
something? Or have I just not tripped the right switch.

Thanks.




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Roger Shoaf
 
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"D'Olier" wrote in message
...
As I was plugging something in the other day I saw a little spark and now
the two outlets at that point don't work. I've tried 'tripping' a few of
the switches. Does this usually mean a fuse is gone and I have to replace
something? Or have I just not tripped the right switch.


First of all something is wrong with this circuit if what you were plugging
in worked fine in another outlet.

Second you refer to switches, I assume that you are referring to circuit
breakers. If a circuit breaker is tripped, it will usually be half way
between off and on. To reset, turn it all the way off then back on.

As Michael Baugh suggested, this might be a GFIC circuit especially if it is
in a kitchen, bath or outdoors. These come in several varieties. Often
there will be buttons on the face of the outlet, one marked test and the
other marked reset. Sometimes a regular plug is used but it is downstream
from the outlet with the buttons on it and those will trip.
The third type is a GFIC breaker and those you would reset like a regular
breaker.

If these things don't work you might want to schedule a service call with an
electrician. This might be something that should be looked at by someone
that knows what they are doing, and the way you ask the question suggests
you are not familiar with wiring and since this is important to the safety
of your family you might want to let a pro handle it.

--

Roger Shoaf

About the time I had mastered getting the toothpaste back in the tube, then
they come up with this striped stuff.


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willshak
 
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On 12/27/2004 10:06 PM US(ET), D'Olier took fingers to keys, and typed
the following:

As I was plugging something in the other day I saw a little spark and now
the two outlets at that point don't work. I've tried 'tripping' a few of
the switches. Does this usually mean a fuse is gone and I have to replace
something? Or have I just not tripped the right switch.

Thanks.

Perhaps the outlet itself shorted out? Turn off the breaker to that
outlet and pull it out. Replace with a new outlet.

--
Bill
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D'Olier
 
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Default


"willshak" wrote in message
...
On 12/27/2004 10:06 PM US(ET), D'Olier took fingers to keys, and typed
the following:

As I was plugging something in the other day I saw a little spark and now
the two outlets at that point don't work. I've tried 'tripping' a few of
the switches. Does this usually mean a fuse is gone and I have to

replace
something? Or have I just not tripped the right switch.

Thanks.

Perhaps the outlet itself shorted out? Turn off the breaker to that
outlet and pull it out. Replace with a new outlet.

--
Bill


That's what I think happened. The outlet is outdoors and although I know
nothing about this type of thing, seeing a little spark and then it doesn't
work sounds like being 'shorted out'.




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Mr Fixit eh
 
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If you don't already have all of the circuits mapped out in your home,
this would be a great time to get on this project. Grab a radio and a
helper to label each outlet and lighting device and appliance with it's
corresponding circuitbreaker number.

Once you know for sure which circuit breaker(s) protects the
receptacles in question, only then are you ready to start
trouble-shooting.

If your panel has circuit breakers (you refer to "switches"), turn the
breaker firmly to the "off" position, then back to the "on" position.
If you hear a click, and/or the breaker visibly trips, you have a
dead-short in the circuit. You would need to go and hunt down the
short-circuit condition -- WITH THE POWER OFF TO THAT CIRCUIT. As was
suggested, it could well be a faulty receptacle. Take out the old one
and replace it with a new one. Make sure you connect the wires exactly
like the old one. Do not use backstabbed connections. Strip the end
of the wire 5/8 inch, and tighten the wire under the screws with the
wire running in a clockwise direction around and under the screw.

If turning the breaker off/ on does not immediately re-trip the
breaker, but the receptacles still are not working, then you need to do
further testing (or call an electrician). Buy a $10 circuit analyzer
from the local hardware store. It looks like this
http://www.grainger.com/Grainger/pro...766418&ccitem=
Turn the breaker back on to test. If the lights on the tester light
up, you have an open neutral. Turn off the circuit breaker, and call
an electrician. If the tester does not light up, you have an
interruption in the non-grounded (hot) wire or a faulty breaker.
Mr Fixit eh

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