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damnoldhouse

04:33AM | 09/13/07
Member Since: 09/12/07
2 lifetime posts
Bvelectrical
I changed 4 plugs in the living room of a house that was built in 1920. The power was working b-4 the change, but after the change of plugs 3 out of 4 have no power, also no power on the second floor except in the hall. I tested all the wires comming out of wall and shut off/on all power. what am i 2 do now.

lady trying 2 do it herself

Billhart

09:34AM | 09/13/07
Member Since: 04/25/05
1918 lifetime posts
"I tested all the wires comming out of wall"

What did you use to test he wires? What was the results?

How many circuits re there in the house? And about how big is the house?

Depening on upgrades that might have been done over the years they might all be on one circuit.

How did you connect the wires to the new receptacles? Did you use the screw terminals? Did you pigtail the existing wires and just use one (of each color) to connect to the recpetacles?

"but after the change of plugs 3 out of 4 have no power,"

So one of the 4 new ones still works.

Check the connections in that box and the "next" one in the circuit. Most likely the one that is closes to the good one.

damnoldhouse

04:47AM | 09/14/07
Member Since: 09/12/07
2 lifetime posts
What did you use to test he wires? I used a Voltage meter. What was the results? No current

How many circuits re there in the house?

How do I count the circuits?

And about how big is the house? Just 920sqft. 3bdrms, 1 & half bath, built 1920.

Depening on upgrades that might have been done over the years they might all be on one circuit. How do I change that so that it benifits me.

How did you connect the wires to the new receptacles? I used the screw terminals, Did you pigtail the existing wires and just use one (of each color) to connect to the recpetacles? I used 1 of each color to connect, but what does pigtail mean?

Billhart

05:55AM | 09/14/07
Member Since: 04/25/05
1918 lifetime posts
"What did you use to test he wires? I used a Voltage meter. What was the results? No current"

You only have current when you have a load connected and it is measured by an ampmeter.

I assumed that what you ment was that you used a voltmeter to test from hot to neutral and read zero volts.

Alot of electrical terms are miss used. Usually everyone knows that was ment. But when there is a problem not using the right terms can lead to misunderstanding.

Sometimes people use no contact testers and other times people test hot to ground (which you don't have if it has not been rewired). Each of those measurement would give different bits of clues.

And by the way, what you replaced where receptacles. Plugs are what are on the end of the lamp that you plug into the receptacle.

"How do I count the circuits? "

Count the number of fuses or circuit breakers. But the bigger ones (double wide circuit breaker or big block on fuses) are mains or things like A/C, electric stoves, and dryers.

"Depening on upgrades that might have been done over the years they might all be on one circuit. How do I change that so that it benifits me."

If this is the orginal installation then you might only have a 60 or 80 amp 240 service. In a few cases only 120 volts.

You would need an electrican to install new panel, meter and work with the power company to run a new drop.

Then run new circuits. In some cases they would split up the existing circuits and in other install new receptacles.

"Did you pigtail the existing wires and just use one (of each color) to connect to the recpetacles? I used 1 of each color to connect, but what does pigtail mean?"

With pigtailing the income and out going wires are connected to gether along with a short wire (the pigtail) with a wirenut. Then the single pigtail wire connects to the receptacle. And this is done for both the hot, neutral, and the ground (if you have one).

At this point my only suggestion is to go back and check the connections and make sure that one did not slip off.

But when you are doing that also CAREFULLY inspect the receptacles.

On each side, between the 2 screws, there is a brass link that can be broken away.

Normally that is left in place, but in some special cases one or both are broken away. One example is where you have a duplex receptacle where 1/2 is switched by the wall switch and the other is always one.

It has been know that someone buys a receptacle and breaks out the link and then ends up returning it and it ends up in the bin to "bite" the person that buys it.

Also I suggest that you get a book or 2 on home wiring. I like Rex Cauldwell's "Home Wiring". Also "COmplete Homewiring" by Black and Decker.
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