What to Do When Your Circuit Breaker Is On But There Is No Power
- Dec 20, 2017
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Usually, if you suddenly lose power to a room, you know that the solution is as simple as a quick trip to your circuit breaker and resetting the one that tripped.
Unfortunately, some people are surprised that this isn’t the case.
The circuit breaker is on, but there is no power.
3 Steps to Follow When Your Circuit Breaker Is On, But There Is No Power
The good news is that there are some simple steps to follow when your circuit breaker is on, but there is no power, that should help clarify the problem.
1. Try Resetting the Breaker Anyway
First and foremost, you want to check to make sure that the breaker in question isn’t actually tripped.
Sometimes, breakers look like they aren’t when they really are.
To do this, unplug all the devices that are running off of the breaker in question.
With that complete, reset the breaker by turning it off and back on again.
This will make sure that the breaker is on and sending power to its outlets. If you find that electricity is now available through those outlets, the problem is solved.
2. Check the GFCI Reset Button
Another easy solution that might apply when your circuit breaker is on but there is no power to its corresponding outlets is to check the GFCI reset button. Ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI, but sometimes called GFIs) are designed to act like mini circuit breakers that can cut off power, too.
If your home is newer you may have ground fault circuit interrupter outlets, but this won’t always be the case.
For those who don’t have one, the problem is probably that one of your outlets is damaged and/or has a loose wire.
This issue could be causing others to lose power. It’s like old Christmas lights. When one quits working, the daisy-chain effect causes the rest of them to go out.
The outlets in your home may be wired that way. If you determine that’s the problem, you’ll probably need an electrician to figure out which outlet is causing the chain reaction and fix its wires.
3. The Breaker Is No Longer Working
If you’ve confirmed that the other reasons aren’t behind the lack of power, then the simple truth is that the breaker is probably no longer working.
This is often the case when the power isn’t going to your home’s lights or the problem otherwise doesn’t seem to involve an outlet.
As such, replacing the breaker will solve the problem.
If you don’t know how to do this on your own, just call a licensed electrician.
Getting Your Power Back by Calling an Electrician
Sometimes, though, the problem is actually a bit more complicated.
You may replace the breaker and find it still isn’t resolved.
This usually points to a wiring problem, in which case, it’s probably best to hand the job over to an electrician rather than risk making it much worse (and potentially hurting yourself in the process).
The sooner you call, the sooner they’ll fix the problem and prevent further issues.