I became a member of the Nielsen tv monitoring group, The tv is is in my living room on a back-to-back wall in my kitchen. Only the tv was on when I tried to make a cup of coffee with my Keurig machine. The GFC blew but the button did not pop and could not be reset. I have to wait 5 days for an electrician; no tv and I have to make coffee at another outlet on the floor. Could the pretty large amount of Nielsen equipment have caused an overload or short to my electric lines? One gfc and two regular outlets are affected in my kitchen and do not work anymore. My place is 17 years old. Do these outlets just "go bad?"

2 Answers 2


The Nielsen equipment is a red herring.

I am presuming you know where the circuit breaker is for this circuit, have found it, and have confirmed it is not tripped.

It doesn't sound like the GFCI blew at all. It sounds like you have an in-wall wiring problem that halfway worked for awhile, and the surge load of the Keurig was simply the last straw for it; and that was the triggering event that caused it to "let go".

Unless you have recently been banging nails or screws into your walls, almost always, wiring problems are at the terminations (ends) of the wires. This is why Code absolutely requires every wire terminate at an accessible point whose cover is not blocked by any part of the building.

Electrical wiring is done in "tree" topology starting with the trunk being at the service panel. Usually that amounts to a "vine" topology. We are particularly interested in two places: the first place that failed (i.e. the one closest to the panel), and the place before that (i.e. one step closer to the panel). The problem will be there, or there.

However, this sort of thing shouldn't happen at all. The usual cause is a cheap builder trick called a "backstab" wire connection, and the cheap 50 cent receptacles they are so fond of using. We literally get a question a day about failures just like this.

So it wouldn't hurt to go through the entire circuit and upgrade yourself to quality wiring methods and receptacles. Watch the breakaway tabs on the receptacles.

That said, I doubt it is the Nielsen equipment. I also doubt you are overloading the circuit -- while the Keurig is a HUGE load, consuming 12.5A or 83% of a 15A circuit capacity, this hasn't been tripping breakers before or you'd have mentioned that.

Still, it wouldn't hurt to tally up all the nameplate data from all their machines, and the TV, and the Keurig, and everything else on the circuit including the things you don't know about yet. Come on back here and post them. We need amps/amperes/A, watts/W, and VA -- not every device will list all of them.

If the device has a wall-wart or brick power supply, we can only use Watts or VA off the device -- Amps is useless. If there's no data on the device, get it off the wall-wart/brick. And if it's a small cellphone-sized wall-wart, don't bother, just count it as zero.

This sort of problem is exactly why modern Codes now require kitchens to have two, 20-amp, dedicated receptacle circuits.

  • 100% agree , the coffee maker alone could cause the problem with back stabs and the tv and other minor loads put it over the top.
    – Ed Beal
    Aug 12, 2018 at 19:09

GFC trips are caused by a very small ground fault current. Seems more likely that Keurig plus TV and Nielsen caused the branch circuit breaker to trip. You should be able to find, get access and reset that without an electrician. However an electrician should investigate why the living room outlet is on the same branch circuit as the kitchen. Depending on where you live, that is likely an electrical code violation.

Circuit breakers and GFCs do go bad. When they do they should fail so that they trip when they shouldn't or don't reset rather than fail to trip.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.