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  • Tracing an electrical line problem behind walls

    A recent remodel was done in changing the garage to a family room. New electrical wiring put in for plugs. On one wall the plugs do not work any more. Checked all the breakers and they all work. Can't trace to see where the break in the power is at. Need to figure out where the power is coming in from and and follow it to see where the power stops. Realize now should have done a wiring diagram before putting up all the sheet rock and finishing it. Is there a device that will follow a hot line and show you were the break is. Any help would be appreciated.

  • #2
    Re: Tracing an electrical line problem behind walls

    Welcome to the forum.

    1. Are the recepts that you say dont work any more existing or new additions?
    2. Double check all recepts to make sure you didn't forget to hook up some wires in one of the boxes.
    3. Are you sure all of the outlet boxes are cut through the sheetrock and not covered over?
    4. you can double check the outlets to make sure that all wires have good connections.

    Huck

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    • #3
      Re: Tracing an electrical line problem behind walls

      1. One receptacle was existing and the others are new. I checked the wire coming into the existing buy no power. don’t remember if it was coming off another plug.
      2. I did double check all the plugs to make sure one did not come apart and they are all connected. Just has me puzzled since they all worked.
      3. The one existing plug was facing outside and when it went out the grandkid was using an electrical bush cutter from it. Which made me think it was a breaker but there is power coming out of every breaker.

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      • #4
        Re: Tracing an electrical line problem behind walls

        Look for a GFI plug and push the reset. (in that same series of plugs)

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        • #5
          Re: Tracing an electrical line problem behind walls

          There is a GFI plug in line of those other plugs. Pushed the reset button nothing happened. Pulled it out and tested the wires coming in and no power coming into plug.

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          • #6
            Re: Tracing an electrical line problem behind walls

            wire tracers. www.amprobe.com has them. at-2001 to 5. other people sell them. that will get you started. have fun. breid.................

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            • #7
              Re: Tracing an electrical line problem behind walls

              I don't know if he's going to want to spend around five bills for that tracer though.
              Couple of questions for you.
              Did you do the wiring or did you hire a sparky?
              Are the wires properly pigtailed in each box?
              Is there the possibility that the screws or nails from the rock broke a wire?
              Did you use nailing protectors to cover the wire at the studs?


              What I would do is shut down the entire circuit at the CB box. Then go to the last known working recep. Take it apart and then the next logical recep. Test it with your meter for continuity on ground, neutral and hot. If you have continuity, then go to the next logical recep. and repeat the drill. No offense, but if you did the electrical work and you pigtailed with wire nuts, I am going to assume that somewhere in there you did not twist the wires together before they were wire nutted together. If they were just put in there side by side and turned, one may have slipped, made connection at first, but as they were used and heated, they pulled apart. I have seen this happen before, so don't kick youself if this is what happened. Keep going on those recep. tests for continuity until you find the loose connection. It is unlikely, (but not impossible) that the wire is split or broken between boxes, but not very probable. Most breaks like you describe have occurred right in the box. Happy hunting, and let us know how you come out, or post again and we'll see what next step we can recommend. Cheers,
              Jim Don
              PS: Make sure you do NOT do this testing on a live circuit. We want you back here alive and well.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Tracing an electrical line problem behind walls

                Originally posted by vickbill View Post
                A recent remodel was done in changing the garage to a family room. New electrical wiring put in for plugs. On one wall the plugs do not work any more. Checked all the breakers and they all work. Can't trace to see where the break in the power is at. Need to figure out where the power is coming in from and and follow it to see where the power stops. Realize now should have done a wiring diagram before putting up all the sheet rock and finishing it. Is there a device that will follow a hot line and show you were the break is. Any help would be appreciated.
                If you happen to be an Administrator at the College (or have connections) you may want to check in with the CONST 240 Instructor. We also have a forum member here from Rexburg who repairs appliances but should be able to trace some electrical and may still own some tracing equipment.

                Mark
                "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

                I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Tracing an electrical line problem behind walls

                  he asked. it's not my job to tell them how to spend their bucks. breid........

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                  • #10
                    Re: Tracing an electrical line problem behind walls

                    Thanks for all the post. I did the wiring myself along with my son. I will follow all the advise given and recheck connections and hopefully can find the problem. Will let everyone know what we find out. appeciate all the advise.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Tracing an electrical line problem behind walls

                      Mark,

                      Who is the forum member from Rexburg that does appliance repair?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Tracing an electrical line problem behind walls

                        Originally posted by vickbill View Post
                        Mark,

                        Who is the forum member from Rexburg that does appliance repair?
                        His name is Jerad Littlefield of Littlefield Appliances. He has not been as active on the site since he dropped Plumbing from his business.

                        Mark
                        "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

                        I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

                        Comment

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