I have a new tenant in my new home and one of the first things he did was plug in a vacuum that caused the lights in his room to go out.

I was able to restore power to half his room by flipping the breaker on and off, but the other half (one outlet and 2 3-way dimmer switches) just won't come on.

I've reset all the GFCI outlets I could find and taken a look at the wiring in the outlet, but now I'm at a loss as to what to do.

Any advice, or ideas what the problem could be?

  • 1
    It seems to me that there is likely a bad connection in the circuit. The load (vacuum) that caused the breaker to trip also likely caused the poor connection to melt and separate. The problem is likely in the last working outlet box in the circuit, or the non working one. – Connor Bredin Jan 28 '17 at 17:38
  • I've taken a look at the non-working outlet and I can't see anything obvious - what am I looking for? I also haven't looked at the last working one. – Cryptovirus Jan 28 '17 at 18:37
  • Check all of the receptacles on that circuit - working or not, plug outlet, switch, or light. – user4302 Jan 28 '17 at 19:52
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    Scorch marks, melted insulation on the wires, loose splices (may have to remove wirenuts to check the connection. Are the wires wrapped around the screw terminals or stabbed into the back of the receptacles? Back stabbed receptacles are notorious for poor connection issues. – Connor Bredin Jan 28 '17 at 19:53
  • The receptacles are NOT backstabbed. I don't know which circuit the outlet belongs to, but the one next to it is working (has 4 wires in the box), the broken onw which is not working has 2 wires in the box, and all of the other outlets/switches that could be on the circuit are working. Do I have to pull all my electric stuff out, or should I only bother with the ones close to/next to the outlet? – Cryptovirus Jan 29 '17 at 2:04

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