06:19PM | 05/17/10
Member Since: 05/16/10
1 lifetime posts
Our family room has 4 outlets whose bottom plugs are controlled by a 4 way switche (The top plugs are hot all the time). This weekend while vacuuming, the vacuum shut off. I thought I had blown a breaker but none of them were thrown. I turned the breaker off and back on just to make sure. I looked around for GFI outlets to see if they were tripped and they were fine. All four bottom plugs simply don't have any power and the switches don't change anything when toggled. All of the outlets and wiring looks good and the wires going into the outlets are all hot so I can't figure out what it would be. Any help or advice?

doug seibert

01:54AM | 05/20/10
Member Since: 08/10/02
843 lifetime posts
The power comes to the receptacle first......A switch leg takes the Hot leg and carries it thru the three and 4-way switches and returns the switched leg to the "bottom" receptacle.......

The fault could be at any of the switch locations.....vacuums draw heavy loads..... often BACKSTABBED connections on the switches or receptacles fail because of the high current draw......

Always use the screw connections

"......measure Once.....cut Twice....

throw that one away and cut a new one...."


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