Tuesday, May 18, 2021

It is Electrifying


Owning a home means dealing with crisis. And things generally break when it is most inconvenient to repair them causing an elevated sense of crisis. 

That happened on Friday. Just before Chris and I were to head off to the airport for our weekend in Houston, for some inexplicable reason the electricity in the master bedroom stopped working. It was weird. The circuit breaker did not pop, it was just part of the circuit stopped working--of course that included the closet and the main part of the bedroom. Fortunately, the TV still functioned, turns out it is on a different circuit. 

I spent a few minutes trying to troubleshoot the problem and almost made us late for our flight. It was the first time is a very long time that I arrived at the gate and the boarding process was underway and actually past our position in line. 

Upon returning home Sunday night, I was able to get a better handle on the problem and determine that it was a neutral wire problem. I spent about an hour working the problem, to no avail. But the effort got my mind turning on how that circuit runs through the house and where the problem might lie. 

I was fortunate to remember that, strangely, one particular outlet in another bedroom was on the circuit. Yesterday afternoon I began my troubleshooting with that outlet, which was, as best as I could figure, the first plug on the circuit. Turns out I was correct and also, lucky! After confirming the outlet was, in fact, part of the circuit and was also working I began my investigation. I found three wires in the outlet box and one loose neutral wire. I reconnected the loose wire, whereupon, electricity was restored to the bedroom. 

You cannot imagine my excitement. While it was not the first place I had looked, it certainly was not the last possible place I could have been searching to find the issue. 

Problem solved. 

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

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