Did the lights go dark when you plugged in a new appliance? If so, you may just need to find somewhere else to plug it in. However, many circuit breaker problems are more complicated. If switching back on a tripped breaker does not help, and you continue to have power loss, flickering lights, or constantly tripping breakers, you need a professional electrician.
Try It Yourself: Resetting a Breaker
When breakers trip and shut off power to a room, it usually means the circuit became overloaded and shut off to protect itself. Head to your electrical panel and you will notice that one or more of your breakers have switched to the “off” position.
Push the breaker switch all the way to the “off” side, then toggle it firmly back to the “on” position. That should restore power to the room.
However, you may have circuit breaker problems preventing the breaker from resetting. Unplug everything in the affected room and try resetting the breaker again. Still no power in the room? The circuit breaker problems may have damaged the wiring or another serious issue may have occurred, and you will need an electrician to troubleshoot.
Circuit Breaker Problems an Electrician Should Diagnose
When things are not as simple as flipping a breaker switch, a licensed electrician can test the electrical panel and outlets to diagnose a problem.
We can look for dead outlets, wiring issues and circuit breaker problems:
- Breaker tripped and power is not restored when resetting the switch
- GFCI outlets forcing a circuit breaker to shut down
- Circuit works, but with a humming noise
- Circuit works, but only some outlets have power
- Breakers continue to trip, but overloading seems unlikely
- Breakers do not control what they should, due to electrical miswiring
- Someone received an electric shock when touching the breaker or service panel
Professional Diagnostics = Faster Solutions
A love for problem solving may be in your personality, but without the training and experience of a professional electrician you may waste hours or days searching for answers. Circuit breaker problems usually happen for one of just a handful of reasons — but you need an electrician’s expertise and tools to figure it out quickly.
Safety is another issue. Once you start digging into your circuit breakers or outlet receptacles, you put yourself at risk of shock. Amateur repairs also increase your risk of broken appliances and house fires.
If flipping your breaker off and on does not fix the problem, call a professional electrician. We can test for circuit breaker problems, eliminate other possible causes like bad wiring or dead outlets, and get your power flowing smoothly again.