Question – Troubleshooting a Dryer Outlet – Part 1
After a lightning storm, some plugs don’t work and the dryer tries to come on, but won’t start.
Dryer is single phasing and certain other wall plugs are out after lightning storm. The dryer tries to come on but doesn’t have enough power to start. We looked in the circuit box and nothing is tripped. Is this repairable by us or do we need an electrician?
I will begin by stating that I adviseÂ homeowners not to perform work In their main Electrical Service Panel, especially when it come to trouble shooting the loss of the Main Service or part of it.
The extent of which you can safely perform checks would be visually inspecting the breakers to see if they are tripped. In some cases a breaker may appear to be in the “ON” position when in fact it is tripped off internally. If this is the case, then by turning the breaker “OFF” all the way, then back “ON” should remedy this situation, otherwise there may be another problem, and it still may be with the breaker or the attachment of the breaker to the Panel Buss. After making these Visual Checks, if you do not have Normal 240 volt Power, then I would consult a Professional Electrician.
The typical home has a 240 volt service, which is a result of two 120 volt lines entering the Main PanelÂ from your Local Electric Utility Company. It appears that you have indeed lost one of the 120 volt lines.
A test must be performed to discover where the trouble is. This comes through a Process of Elimination and Inspection, starting with the Main Service Feeds entering the breaker area of the service – NOT inside the Electric Utility Company area of the panel (this area is off limits to anyone while the electrical service is energized from the utility company).
The process usually starts by checking at the Main Breaker or any 240 volt breaker – Using a tester that can test for 240 volts, checking Line One across to Line Two – this area should have 240 volts on the secondary side of these breakers. If the reading does not show 240 volts then the problem is on the Electric Utility Company side of your service and you will need to call the Utility Company and explain the situation to them.
Be Careful and Be Safe - Never Work on Energized Circuits!
Consult your Local Building Department about Permits and Inspections for all Electric Wiring Projects.
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