no power to my outlet

jbatts29January 19, 2012

almost a year ago i installed a new outlet to run a treadmill.I used a 20 amp breaker, 12-2 wire and a 20 amp outlet. it worked great for months then we stopped using it. i just went to use it again and i have no power. there is power coming out of the breaker and the wire appears to be intact. any ideas?

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mike_kaiser_gw

How did you determine there is power coming out of the breaker? It's not uncommon for a breaker to trip without giving the visual appearance of having tripped. Have you tried turning the breaker off and then back on?

Is this a straight run of cable from the service panel to the outlet in question?

    Bookmark   January 19, 2012 at 11:31PM
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brickeyee

Many breakers only ove the handle slightly when tripped.

In needs to be moved fully off and then back on to engage the handle with the internal mechanism.

This is to make sure that even if the handle is held on, the internal mechanism can still turn the circuit off.

If after an off-on cycle of the breaker there is still no power ant the receptacle (assuming that is what you mean by "outlet") then turn the breaker off again and pull the receptacle out of the box.

If there are any push in connections on the receptacle move then to the screws on the receptacle.

Put the receptacle back into the box and turn on the power and test.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2012 at 9:05AM
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ionized_gw

Was this a new, dedicated circuit that you installed?

    Bookmark   January 20, 2012 at 11:31AM
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jbatts29

yes this is a new, dedicated line. it is a straight run and i used a voltage meter to check for power.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2012 at 1:46PM
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ionized_gw

You have established that something else plugged in, a lamp, radio, vacuum cleaner,... does not operate?

What kind of outlet did you put in, wire under screws, wire into a slot and tighten screws or stab wire into spring-loaded connector? Pull the outlet out and check for voltage at the outlet connectors

You could also start simple and just replace the outlet. It is cheap and easy and not a bad idea for a homeowner to have a spare around.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2012 at 1:58PM
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jbatts29

nothing works in the outlet. wire under screws. there is no power going to the outlet. i checked with a voltage meter.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2012 at 2:41PM
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ranger619

Hey came in late to your problem hope you fixed it. If not i am an electrician in IA working for a service shop been in the trade for 20 years now. If you are qualified enough to open panel and check the power comming off breaker start there. You will check with a fluke or other voltage meter to see if when the breaker is ON the power is leaving the breaker meaning one lead of your meter is on the breaker screw the other at the ground bar. If you have 120volts that way... then check from the breaker to the nuetral bar and make sure you have 120 as well. If you have the volts leaving the panel then you must trace the wire to the tredmill making sure there is no juction box in between. If straight run then the wire you ran....IF NO VOLTS AT OUTLET..meaning no volts from the black to white or black to ground. It might be a bad run of wire..I have seen this in romex before as well as metal clad cables...if that helps at all just trying to get you back on line.. JD

    Bookmark   January 20, 2012 at 4:33PM
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jbatts29

i have power all around at the service panel. no power at the other end of the wire. but it used to work. i dont understand what could have happened

    Bookmark   January 20, 2012 at 6:25PM
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brickeyee

"i dont understand what could have happened"

A loose connection is a likely culprit.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2012 at 6:47PM
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ranger619

did u check the power comming out of that! breaker? If yes then you should IF NO JUNCTION OR SPLICE IN THAT HOMERUN FROM PANEL WIRE have power!! You ran a solid run from the panel to the outlet right? so if its not CUT anywhere then you must have something at the end of the wire power leaves the breaker IF WORKING!!!!! and then travels to the outlet! take outlet off with breaker off and test the wire!!!! CHECK CONTINUITY to see if any of the wires in the run are broken did u follow my last steps to the tee?

    Bookmark   January 20, 2012 at 7:12PM
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ranger619

Its very simple to find the problem if you ran it yourself. example I take a 12-2wg romex out of panel and run it 4 feet along wall to box. step 1 PANEL WIRE... hook up bare wire to ground....white to nuetral bar....bare to ground bar....done. OTHER END OF WIRE take black to outlet brass side or right side or hot side....white to silver screw or left side or nuetral side and bare to groung screw or green screw DONE turn breaker on and you got 120volts at each end. is that what you got???

    Bookmark   January 20, 2012 at 7:23PM
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ranger619

step 1 black to breaker sorry bout that typing way to fast. lol

    Bookmark   January 20, 2012 at 7:26PM
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jbatts29

i'm not an idiot. i ran it the first time and it worked for months. the wire is intact and not loose so what would make a wire suddenly go bad?

    Bookmark   January 20, 2012 at 8:58PM
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jbatts29

ranger619 yes i have followed your advice to a t

    Bookmark   January 20, 2012 at 9:12PM
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mike_kaiser_gw

If you have power at the panel, no power at the receptacle, and it's a continuous run of cable, then the cable must be bad.

At the receptacle are you testing hot to ground or hot to neutral? Or both. 120v hot to ground but not hot to neutral would indicate a problem with the neutral wire. No voltage with either the neutral or ground would indicate a problem with the hot wire.

As previously suggested, if you have another piece of wire long enough to reach from the panel to receptacle then you can test for continuity of the wires in the existing cable.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2012 at 10:47PM
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ranger619

Jbatts in no way was i calling u an idiot i just want to make things as clear as possible ... when we try to help people we do not know their knolwledge as well as the other people that are trying to help u. i have to take into consideration that the other experts trying to help will want to see the advice given to decide if they infact will agree to see if all steps have been tried before they post so i apologize if u took offense none intented The fact is that YES the cable u ran could have had a default in it and did not break or arc in half until the load was put on it for a lenght of time to cause the nick to arc itslef in half the only way to be sure is to check continuity on cable...Other wise just run another wire and that way you will have it fixed for sure....

    Bookmark   January 21, 2012 at 10:36PM
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jbatts29

ok thats what i'm going to do. thanks for the help

    Bookmark   January 22, 2012 at 11:53PM
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