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Electrical Wire and Cable

Testing and Repairing Outlet Wiring

How to Test and Repair Outlet Wiring: Having a Circuit Analyzer style plug in tester that will check the power and polarity of your home receptacle outlets is invaluable.

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Repairing an Outlet Problem

Electrical Question: How do I fix an outlet problem when my tester shows that the hot and ground are reversed?

I have two floor outlets in a small room that I use for my office. One morning last week I had both computers running and a couple of hours later they were dead. Resetting the circuit breaker didn’t restore power to them and my pocket tester reported that the hot and ground were reversed. Is this something I need an electrician to fix or should I just turn the breaker off again and reset the wires to the outlets?

– Steve

This electrical wiring question came from: Steve, a Homeowner from Modesto, California.

Dave’s Reply:
Thanks for your electrical wiring question Steve.

How to Test and Repair Outlet Wiring

Steve, from the information that you have provided the circuit wiring at the floor outlets will need to be corrected, however it is unknown who installed the wiring or why the wiring is reversed. When a situation such as this arises then it is best to inspect the entire circuit for any other abnormalities which will be best identified by a qualified electrician who will then be able to make any corrections to ensure circuit integrity. Without knowing your level of expertise I can only say that you will have to make the decision about the next step to take. Again, I have very limited information about the history of the circuit wiring in question. At best, electrical wiring corrections such as this may be fairly easy to resolve once they have been discovered. As for the disposition of your computer equipment, we can only hope for the best.

Electrical Tip

How to Use Electrical Testers
Receptacle Tester

The Following will assist you with your testing and wiring electrical outlets:

Electric Outlet Wiring

Circuit Wiring
Circuit Wiring



You identified your project to be about Lost Power,
so you might find this information very useful:

Why Your Home Lost Power
Lost power

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Basic Home Electrical Wiring by Example

Dave's Guide to Home Electrical Wiring:

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Great for any Home Wiring Project.
  electrical wiring  

Complete Guide to Home Electrical Wiring

Perfect for Homeowners, Students,
Handyman, Handy Women, and Electricians
Wiring GFCI Outlets
Wiring Home Electric Circuits
120 Volt and 240 Volt Outlet Circuits
Wiring Light Switches
Wiring 3-Wire and 4-Wire Electric Range
Wiring 3-Wire and 4-Wire Dryer Cord and Dryer Outlet
How to Troubleshoot and Repair Electrical Wiring
Wiring Methods for Upgrading Electrical Wiring
NEC Codes for Home Electrical Wiring
....and much more.

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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