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Thread: Neutral wire no longer completes circuit.

  1. #1
    Automated Home Lurker
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
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    2

    Default Neutral wire no longer completes circuit.

    I turned on my microwave this evening and it went dead after running for about 5 seconds. I checked the breakers and none of them had been tripped, so I figured it may be a fuse in the microwave.
    Just to be sure I plugged the microwave into a different outlet and it worked without any problem.

    So off I went searching. I have 4 outlets identified on this circuit and only one is working. All of the others no longer give a completed circuit from hot to neutral. The circuit is only completed hot to ground. ??? All of the wiring looks to be ok and nothing was ever touched on this circuit (no new outlets, etc.)

    I assume I have a problem from the outlet the works to the second in the chain, however it is the neutral wire that appears to have the problem.

    Any thoughts would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Automated Home Jr Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    26

    Default Re: Neutral wire no longer completes circuit.

    Yes, Check the one that works first.... if not kill the power and check the wiring behind each socket. If thats ok check the wiring in the distribution box. (kill the incoming power first!, not yourself :-) ...)

    It's proberly not a cable fault, but if the sockets are wired ok and the distribution box is ok then you should start checking the cables out, I take it the other rings in the house are ok?

    The only time i've ever seen this in the past was either due to poor wiring or when something had eaten it's way through part of the twin & earth cable.

    Finally if your not sure how to do this, then get someone in!

    hope that helps.

  3. #3
    Automated Home Lurker
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
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    2

    Default Re: Neutral wire no longer completes circuit.

    Thanks for the reply.

    I finally got to the working outlet (there was a very large piece of furniture that had to be moved first) and discovered that one of the downstream neutral wires was burned. It may have come loose and overheated (or shorted?) due to a poor contact. The outlet plug was damaged so I replaced it with a GFCI type since the downstream outlets are located near a kitchen sink.

    It seems to be working fine now. I made sure that all of the contacts were very tight, so I hope this issue does not happen again.


  4. #4
    Automated Home Jr Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    26

    Default Re: Neutral wire no longer completes circuit.

    Excellent....

    Now you see how easy it is for fires to start 8O

    When we moved into our house, after which I found one socket wasn't working. I made a point of going around to check the sockets and switches, this was before I installed my x10 stuff... You wouldn't believe how many were loose or not done up at all 8O 8O even the light fittings were not screwed down properly.

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