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Troubleshooting Electrical Outlets

How to Repair an Outlet that Lost Power: Electrical Troubleshooting Methods for a Wall Outlet and Electrical Circuit Wiring.

 

Lost Power to an Outlet
Electrical Question: The power to an outlet went out.

This electrical troubleshooting question came from: Pattie, a Homeowner from Rio Linda, California.
Thanks for your electrical question Pattie.

How to Repair Outlets that Lost Power

Application: Testing Electrical Circuit Wiring for Outlets.
Skill Level: Intermediate to Advanced.
Tools Required: Basic Electricians Pouch Hand Tools and Voltage Tester.
Estimated Time: Depends on personal level experience, ability to work with hand tools and electrical troubleshooting skills.
Precaution: Identify the affected outlet circuit, turn it OFF and then Tag it with a Note before performing any wiring or inspections.
Note: Electrical troubleshooting is best performed by a qualified licensed electrical contractor. Homeowners should not work in live electrical panels due to shock hazards and dangerous arc flash hazards.

Electrical Troubleshooting for a Wall Outlet and Electrical Circuit Wiring

  1. Identify the circuit breaker for the outlet that lost power and turn it off.
  2. Remove the outlet and inspect the electrical wiring.
  3. Look for burnt connections to the outlet or a burnt wire splice.
  4. Burnt or damaged wiring and splices must be replaced or repaired using new wire and materials of the same type and size.
  5. If the outlet is damaged then a replacement outlet of the same voltage and amperage will need to be installed.
  6. After the repairs are completed install the outlet and cover.
  7. Turn the circuit on and test the outlet for normal power.

More about Electrical Troubleshooting

Electrical Outlet Wiring
outlet-wiring

Electrical Troubleshooting and Repairs
electrical-troubleshooting

Help for Homeowners
Do-It-Yourself Electrical


» You Can Avoid Costly Mistakes! «

Here's How to Do It:
Wire It Right with the help of my Illustrated Wiring Book

Great for any Home Wiring Project.


  electrical wiring  

Complete Guide to Home Electrical Wiring

Perfect for Homeowners, Students,
Handyman, Handywomen, and Electricians
Includes:
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.

Electrical Tips to Help You Wire it Right

The Safest Way to Test Electrical Devices and Identify Electric Wires!

The Non-Contact Electrical Tester
This is a testing tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and is the first test tool I grab to help identify electrical wiring. It is a Non-contact tester that I use to easily Detect Voltage in Cables, Cords, Circuit Breakers, Lighting Fixtures, Switches, Outlets and Wires. Simply insert the end of the tester into an outlet, lamp socket, or hold the end of the tester against the wire you wish to test. Very handy and easy to use.

The Quickest Way to Check for Faulty Electrical Wiring!

The Plug-In Outlet Tester
This is the first tool I grab to troubleshoot a problem with outlet circuit wiring. This popular tester is also used by most inspectors to test for power and check the polarity of circuit wiring.
It detects probable improper wiring conditions in standard 110-125 VAC outlets Provides 6 probable wiring conditions that are quick and easy to read for ultimate efficiency Lights indicate if wiring is correct and indicator light chart is included Tests standard 3-wire outlets UL Listed Light indicates if wiring is incorrect Very handy and easy to use.

Strip Off Wire Insulation without Nicking and Damaging the Electric Wire!

The Wire Stripper and Wire Cutter
My absolute favorite wire stripping tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and this is the tool I use to safely strip electrical wires.
This handy tool has multiple uses:
The wire gauges are shown on the side of the tool so you know which slot to use for stripping insulation.
The end of the tool can be used to grip and bend wire which is handy for attaching wire onto the screw terminals of switches and outlets..

The wire stripper will work on both solid and stranded wire. This tool is Very Handy and Easy to Use.



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