Top Tips to Make Your Home’s Electricity Safer For Your Children

As we look forward to the blooming of Spring, it is often a time that we think about life, family, and what’s important to us. And if you have children, one of the things that is always important to parents is: your children’s safety.

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You Should Learn About Plumbing If You Own A Home

In plumbing, a lot of things can go the opposite of how you’d like them to go. Plumbing issues can range in difficulty, from easy (do it yourself) to hard (don’t do it yourself!).

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5 Tips to Extend the Life of Your HVAC System

Your home’s HVAC (Heating, Ventilation and Air Condition) system runs around the clock, 24/7, all year long. You can’t expect it to last forever.

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5 Ways To Save Money On Your Power Bill

Your power bill can be pretty expensive, right? With all the other bills that arrive each month, you wonder if it will ever stop. We all need a break from the rising bills! Well, Handyside is here to help with some great tips and advice to lower your electrical power bill. (And the best part is, these tips are easy to implement and most of them can be done at little or no cost, so you can start saving money on your very next power bill!)

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Our Best Plumbing Tips For Your Home

When it comes to plumbing, many things can go wrong. Some plumbing issues are very easy to repair, while others can become quite a bit more difficult. No matter how difficult or simple the plumbing problem may appear, it’s wise to have some plumbing knowledge to ensure that repairs are done correctly and efficiently. After all, it’s your home, and you don’t want any nasty surprises by trying to do the work yourself without knowing what to do.

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How Well Do You Know THIS About Your Home?

Does your HVAC system seem mysterious to you? Don’t worry! Handyside is here to help give the low-down on how it works.

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What to Do If Your Electrical Outlet Isn’t Working

Have you ever had that moment of confusion and slight irritation when you plug your device into an electrical outlet, expecting to see it power up, only to find it unresponsive? It’s a surprisingly common occurrence that can disrupt your day. Whether it’s your morning coffee machine that won’t start or your computer that won’t charge, dealing with a dead outlet can be frustrating. But don’t worry—there are steps you can take to troubleshoot the issue before calling in a professional.

When you encounter a non-functional outlet, you must remain calm and methodical. The problem might seem daunting at first, but with a bit of know-how, you might be able to solve it on your own. This guide will walk you through what to do when your electrical outlet isn’t working, from simple checks to more involved testing.

Why Is My Electrical Outlet Dead?

When your electrical outlet stops working, it can be a source of frustration and inconvenience. Several factors could be behind this common household issue, often stemming from simple fixes to more complex electrical system faults. Here are some of the key reasons why your electrical outlet might be dead:

  • Tripped Circuit Breaker: Often, a dead outlet results from a tripped circuit breaker. This safety device shuts off power to prevent damage or fire from an overloaded circuit.
  • Faulty Wiring: Wiring can degrade or become loose over time, leading to power flow disruptions.
  • Defective Outlet: Outlets can wear out or malfunction, especially in older homes, leading to a dead outlet.
  • GFCI Outlet Tripped: For outlets in moisture-prone areas, a tripped GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) can cut power to prevent electrical shocks.

What Can I Do to Troubleshoot the Problem?

When you’re faced with a dead outlet, the first step in troubleshooting is to ensure that the problem isn’t related to the device you’re trying to use. Plug another device into the same outlet to see if it works. If the second device fails to power up, you’ll know the issue lies with the outlet itself.

Next, use a voltage tester to check for power in the outlet. This tool is invaluable for diagnosing electrical issues and can tell whether electricity reaches the outlet. If the tester shows no voltage, the problem could be at the source, like the circuit breaker box, or it might be a case of damaged wiring behind the outlet.

Check Nearby Outlets

Once you’ve confirmed the dead outlet is not working, it’s time to check other electrical outlets in the same room or on the same wall. This can help you determine if the problem is isolated to one outlet or more widespread. If other outlets are not working, you may be dealing with an issue related to the entire circuit.

If nearby outlets are functioning, it suggests that the problem is confined to just one outlet or a specific part of your home’s electrical wiring. This can significantly narrow down your troubleshooting efforts, allowing you to focus on localized repairs or adjustments.

Inspect the Circuit Breakers

The circuit breaker plays a crucial role in your home’s electrical system, protecting it from overload by cutting off electrical flow when it detects a fault. If your outlet isn’t working, the circuit breaker should be your next place to check. Look for any breaker switches that are in the “off” position or appear to be stuck between “on” and “off.” This is a clear sign of a tripped breaker.

Resetting the circuit breaker panel might solve the problem. Still, if it trips again immediately after resetting, this indicates a more severe issue, like a ground fault or an overloaded circuit. In such cases, further investigation is necessary into what is causing the breaker to trip.

Find the Tripped Breaker

Identifying a tripped breaker is key to resolving issues with dead outlets. If you’re not sure which breaker controls the dead outlet, you can test each breaker by turning it off and back on. This might reset the connection and restore power to the outlet. If you find a tripped breaker, resetting it might solve the problem, but remember, a breaker that frequently trips is a symptom of underlying electrical issues that might require a professional electrician’s attention.

Check the GFCIs

Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) outlets are designed to shut off electrical power within milliseconds to prevent electrocution. These outlets are typically found in areas of your home prone to moisture, like bathrooms and kitchens. If your dead outlet is a GFCI outlet, press the reset button located on the outlet. If the GFCI outlet has tripped, pressing the reset button may restore power after an electrical surge.

Additionally, if other outlets are connected to a GFCI, a single trip can affect all connected outlets. Check all GFCI outlets in your home and reset them to ensure they are not causing the problem.

Still No Answer? It’s Time to Call the Professionals

If you’ve carefully followed all the recommended steps for troubleshooting your dead electrical outlet — from resetting tripped circuit breakers and pressing GFCI reset buttons to test with a voltage tester — and still find yourself facing an unresponsive outlet, it’s time to call in the professionals. Persistent issues can signal deeper electrical problems, such as faulty wiring, damaged wiring, or more complex issues within your electrical panel. A licensed electrical contractor has the expertise and tools to safely diagnose and resolve these issues, ensuring your electrical system is reliable, efficient, and up to code. Trying to handle complex electrical repairs on your own can be dangerous; entrusting this task to a professional electrician helps restore power efficiently and ensures your home’s safety and your peace of mind.

Handyside’s team of experienced electricians can handle everything from simple outlet repairs to full electrical system overhauls. Trusting a professional electrical services company in Harrisburg, PA, ensures the job is done right and your home remains safe and functional.

Give Handyside a Call When You’re Dealing With a Dead Electrical Outlet

When you’re stumped by a dead outlet, don’t let it disrupt your day—call Handyside. Our expert team is ready to help, providing reliable, efficient service that restores your home’s functionality and safety. We understand the inconveniences that electrical issues can bring, and we’re committed to solving them promptly.

Do You Make This Mistake When Clearing Your Drain?

Clogged drains happen, even to homeowners who avoid putting grease, food, or excessive amounts of hair down the drain. As good as a plunger is, there are times when it will fail to unclog the drain. After that, there are two good ways to clean the drain, but unfortunately, many homeowners choose a highly recommended way that they should actually avoid. (more…)