Latest Discussions : Electrical & Lighting


02:53AM | 03/31/08
Member Since: 02/06/08
8 lifetime posts
A month ago I added 5 outlets and/or lights with swtiches to my existing wiring by tying into receptacles and adding on that way. All has worked fine and the max # of outlets on any one circuit is 5. Most are two or three.

Everything has been working fine. Now I am getting dimming lights all over the house. Followed by shut down of one circuit where the lights are dimming (and three other circuits). They are always the same three circuits. One in the kitchen, One in the bedroom and one in the bathroom. The stove/refrigerator never seem to be affected. I can tell because the the clocks are all blinking etc. The weird thing is no circuit breakers trip. Resetting each individual circuit breaker does nothing. I have to reset the main breaker.

Just this morning the furnace came on and two minutes later it shut off. That circuit as well as the three other circuits were dead. Had to reset the main breaker again.

A cannot make sense out of this and need help figuring out what's going on. Is it possible that the new outlets has nothing to do with it and the problem is the service itself? A new one was put in 30 years ago and have never had any kind of issue,

I am going to disconnect all the new outlets that I have added to see if that does anything.


doug seibert

04:10AM | 03/31/08
Member Since: 08/10/02
842 lifetime posts
I've reread all your old came here with Very little electrical knowledge....asked only a few questions....(got some good advice).....Now you have problems......

Dad used to eye-ball me and say

".....a LITTLE information is Dangerous....."

You need to educate "wiring simplified"

START by telling us WHAT you actually ended-up-doing....nice and slow.....

You were planning on starting at the A/C circuit ?

Troubleshooting is an ART.........often difficult ONLINE......the more info you bring to the table the better......

Are you still using the DVM ? you have a cheap neon tester or LampSocket w/leads ?

You mention the that 220 volt ?

"" I have to reset the main breaker.""

I don't understand....did the Main trip ?

Is there any Brightening of lights.....this is the "Missing-Nuetral" problem.........

It kinda sounds like loose connections......But why/what the problems with some 220 volt specific.....

Did-ya-use the Push-in backstab connection receptacles......always a problem....Screws!

Are the wire-nuts tight ....sized correct.....fully seated.....

you had 14-2 NM-B and a 20 amp breaker "in stock"........what did you change ?

Your problems ALSO could stem from the POCO.....

What does the incoming service LOOK like.....DON'T TOUCH ANYTHING.....I'm just asking....

Is it new/nice in the city......Old Co-Op 1000' run thru the trees?

"...measure once.....cut twice....throw that one away and cut a new one...."


12:47PM | 03/31/08
Member Since: 02/06/08
8 lifetime posts
Hi . You had a lot of comments and a lot of questions. But what I've done now is to DISCONNECT ALL the receptacles that I've added. I'm going to monitor the dimming lights situation and see if it still happens.

Will keep you posted. THANKS


02:12PM | 03/31/08
Member Since: 04/25/05
1915 lifetime posts
Did you see my post in the other forum?

It sounds like it is a common problem as several circuits are affected and not something to do with your additions.

Also since it is affected my reseting the main breaker the problem is most like a loose connection in the panel and a defective panel.

A loose connection can cause the panel to overheat and cause more damage. Even start a fire.

Breakers trip because of too MUCH current. In general a lose connection might not cause it to trip.


03:01PM | 04/06/08
Member Since: 02/06/08
8 lifetime posts
Hi Again..

National Grid to the rescue. Called the power company here in Mass. and the next day they were out to check connections to the house. Indeed one of the connections on the main feed was corroded. They put on new connectors and everything is fine.


03:04PM | 04/06/08
Member Since: 02/06/08
8 lifetime posts
Hi .. Called the power company. They came out and found a corroded connector on the main feed into the house. Replaced with new and everything is fine.. including my wiring add-ons. Thanks


11:00AM | 04/10/08
Member Since: 04/08/08
54 lifetime posts

Some ten years ago I experienced the identical symptoms you were describing in my mobile home. AS it turned out, due to my adding fixtures (and relative age of the trailer), we had to upgrade our service from 100 amp to 200. Unfortunately, one has no choice but to call a contractor since re-vamping the service requires a permit which can only be authorized to somebody with a master's license. I didn't read past your second reply so I don't know if your problem has been solved already. Take care.

Marvin, the sailor man

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