Hot / Ground Reverse Problem???

 
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Old 12-14-2008, 04:37 PM   #1
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Hot / Ground Reverse Problem???


That's the indication my plug tester (not sure what you call it???) is giving me.

It's a strange problem, my christmas lights just stopped working. They were plugged into the House GFI outside. I found one other plug in my basement and a utility light in the furnace room that appear to be on the same circuit- they don't work either. The breaker was not tripped and the hot wire is still hot but things don't work when plugged in. So far I've opened up the box (outside receptacle) outside to inspect the wiring but it looked normal-nothing touching.

What's going on here- Any suggestions before I call an electrician?

Thanks,
Charlie
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Old 12-14-2008, 04:41 PM   #2
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Re: Hot / Ground Reverse Problem???


Not a sparky, but you pushed 'reset', right?

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Old 12-14-2008, 04:56 PM   #3
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Re: Hot / Ground Reverse Problem???


Loose or open neutral either at the GFCI or before it at one of the connections is my bet.
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Old 12-14-2008, 05:39 PM   #4
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Re: Hot / Ground Reverse Problem???


Quote:
Originally Posted by precisionbuild View Post
Loose or open neutral either at the GFCI or before it at one of the connections is my bet.
That's exactly what it is. Bad neutral, the trick is finding it.
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Old 12-14-2008, 06:07 PM   #5
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Re: Hot / Ground Reverse Problem???


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Originally Posted by Speedy Petey View Post
That's exactly what it is. Bad neutral, the trick is finding it.
Bad neutral, in other words it's no longer connected?

I'll check the other receptacle and light/switch that I know are on the same circuit. Also will check any reset buttons...

Thanks
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Old 12-14-2008, 06:53 PM   #6
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Re: Hot / Ground Reverse Problem???


I was on a service call for an open neutral yesterday and it took me 2 hours ro find the offfending connection/junction box. But, are you sure the squirrels didn't chew one of the wires on your lights. That's what happens to my lights. Hot Neutral reversed should still work your lights.
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Old 12-14-2008, 08:05 PM   #7
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Re: Hot / Ground Reverse Problem???


I've plugged in regular lamps and they don't work either. After opening 5 boxes and finding nothing unusual I realized there was still an unchecked box in the garage. This one has the GFCI outlet and there seems to be a problem here- the reset button does not reset, kind of looks like the test button stays pressed down.

I'm thinking I replace this outlet with a new GFCI and my problem is fixed. I'll buy one tomorrow and see but in the meantime if there are other suggestions please let me know. Thanks.
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Old 12-14-2008, 08:27 PM   #8
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Re: Hot / Ground Reverse Problem???


Quote:
Originally Posted by cowtown View Post
I've plugged in regular lamps and they don't work either. After opening 5 boxes and finding nothing unusual I realized there was still an unchecked box in the garage. This one has the GFCI outlet and there seems to be a problem here- the reset button does not reset, kind of looks like the test button stays pressed down.

I'm thinking I replace this outlet with a new GFCI and my problem is fixed. I'll buy one tomorrow and see but in the meantime if there are other suggestions please let me know. Thanks.
Don't mix up the line/load wires when replacing the GFCI.





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Old 12-14-2008, 09:35 PM   #9
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Re: Hot / Ground Reverse Problem???


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Originally Posted by mickeyco View Post
Don't mix up the line/load wires when replacing the GFCI.





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Hey that actually was good advise, who told you to say that ?
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Old 12-14-2008, 11:06 PM   #10
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Re: Hot / Ground Reverse Problem???


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Hey that actually was good advise, who told you to say that ?

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Old 12-15-2008, 05:59 AM   #11
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Re: Hot / Ground Reverse Problem???


GFI's do not reset unless there is power on them , so I would check that first before replacing it I also believe you have a loose or disconnected neutral & I would start at the one outside. Sometimes when you have a loose connection it dis-connects when you plug something in, like your christmas tree lights.
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Old 12-15-2008, 03:09 PM   #12
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Re: Hot / Ground Reverse Problem???


Turns out it was a bad GFI, I replaced the old one and everything works-thanks everybody.
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Old 12-15-2008, 04:01 PM   #13
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Re: Hot / Ground Reverse Problem???


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Originally Posted by cowtown View Post
Turns out it was a bad GFI, I replaced the old one and everything works-thanks everybody.
I should have got hat one. I've been replacing bad gfi's like crazy, some of them are brand new from the home depot. I'm to the point that if I'm going to install a gfi I feel like I need to have 3 with me just in case. .... Glad your x-mas lights are working. I got mine up today. No gfi..

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