My basement lights do not go on. I have tested the breaker and there is continuity. I tested with a sniffer that power to the light from the switch is good and that the switch will cut power in the off position and deliver power in the on position. I tested the light bulbs on the fixtures and they are good. To be clear it is all the lights on the floor, not just one or two. I am confused as to why the light does not go on if there is power and the bulb is good. One day it worked and the next not at all.

  • Everything works until it doesn't. Have you looked at the connections in the box for the first (upstream) fixture?
    – isherwood
    Mar 8, 2019 at 18:23
  • 2
    Have you checked the wire from the lights back to neutral?
    – Solar Mike
    Mar 8, 2019 at 18:33

1 Answer 1


Since you have power you must not have a return path or neutral that is making contact. In these cases a real volt meter is helpful, but checking the neutral at the panel and any connection points you may visually spot the damage, as I did today on a circuit that was not working. I pulled the device out and the neutral wire had burned off. If you can trace the cable from the panel, make sure if it goes through any outlets you check them; also, it could be any place on the run from the panel to the light that is causing the problem.

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