Oh no half my house is without power what should I do? This article will help you identify and troubleshoot the problem to fix it quickly.
In total the reason half my house is without power is most likely a partial outage issue from the utility. We see this more often than any other issue causing the problem. Additional issues can be caused by a faulty breaker or fuse.
There are many other reasons so read on to better understand.
Top 5 Reasons Why Half My House Is Without Power
- Partial Power Outage From Utility
- One Of The Main Fuses Blown In Panel Box
- Faulty Main Breaker
- Faulty Main Disconnect Switch
- Lost Neutral Connection( Nightmare)
1. Half My House Is Without Power Partial Power Outage From Utility
A partial power outage from the utility is a common occurrence. For those of you that do not understand a partial power outage we need to educate you a bit first. Power on all homes is called single phase. However it is actually two legs of a phase or what we call split phase.
Without getting too technical the incoming power from the pole that connects to your home has 120 volt and 120 volt making 240 volt. The 240 volt runs you larger electrical appliances as the 120 volt x two runs the lights, plugs etc.
Sometimes you can have a loose connection on the service line coming into the hose at the point of attachment. You can also have an attachment point problem at the pole. You will notice this more when it is windy out.
The transformer itself could have issues. This usually results on a call to your power utility to come out and correct the problem. Check with your neighbors first to see if they are having the same issue.
2.Half My House Is Without Power One Of The Main Fuses Blown In Panel Box
The second issue causing the partial outage could be a blown main fuse. Some older homes built in the 1970s, were commonly built with a main fuse disconnect and a fuse panel off to the side. They also would have a combination fuse panel with the main fuses right inside the same enclosure.
The main fuse disconnect would have two main fuses. If one of these blows you will lose half you power. You may ask yourself why didn’t one of my smaller fuses pop instead of the big one?
Well the answer is fuses are funny sometimes. They can get moisture in them over time from being in a damp basement. They can also have corrosion on them. A lot of times it is just simply age. They get old and tired like the rest of us and pop easier than they should. Your can check this with a meter which I will explain at the end of this article.
3. Half My House Is Without Power Faulty Main Breaker
In newer electrical panels, they will have a main breaker at the top of the panel box. Sometimes this will come loose. This will cause arcing which causes heat and then the breaker to trip.
Unfortunately there is not much you can do for this yourself. You will need to call an electrician. The electrician will have to call the power utility for a temporary or emergency disconnect to make the repair.
They will change the breaker out in the main compartment for you. This repair will cost you between $400 and $600 dollars.
More on cost of fuse to breakers here.
4.Faulty Main Disconnect Switch
In this set up you will have a completely separate shut off from your main panel or fuse box. This will be a stand alone box connecting to the main fue box via a pipe.
The power comes from the utility through the meter into that main disconnect box. The disconnect box will have your main fuses in it. If you are handy and know what you are doing. then you can change the fuse yourself.
You will need to shut off the lever to open the main disconnect. Inside you will see two larger fuses. With a part of channel locks or your hand wearing a gloves you can pull on the fuse to remove it. The bottom part of the fuse should come out first.
5.Lost Neutral Connection
In a nutshell this is simply a nightmare if this happens..and it does. In your power feed coming into the house are technically three wire. Two of the wire are hot line to line 240 volt and the white one is the neutral conductor.
The neutral conductor give 120 volt between any one of the 240 volt lines. So from neutral to line on one side and neutral line on the other side. When the neutral line is lost or bad connection for any of the reasons in the above topics. It will cause an electrical disaster in your home.
Without that neutral all kinds of funny things happen. In short every 120 volt load making contact like lights, plugs including what ever is plugged into it, will get 240 volts.
Common ways to tell it that your stove, hot water etc will still work. All of your 120 volt stuff will blow up. The lights in your house will get very bright bright until they pop. Anything plugged in will pop, tv electronics etc.
Basically it’s like a horror movie. If this happens shut you main power off immediately then call your power utility then your electrician. Document everything that has happened.
If the utility determines that it has happened on the street side of their end then they will most likely cover the damage. If they determine that it was on your end but a faulty part then you will be calling your insurance company to replace everything burned out. Let hope this does not happen to you.
6.Other Underlying Causes Why Half My House Is Without Power
A lightning strike that was not obvious. Sometimes lightning can strike a distance away. This can effect the transformer on the pole affecting the power to your home. Lightning strikes can do mysterious things.
Salt air on the lines. For those of you that live next to the ocean the utility can have issues with salt air corroding the lines, This is a common occurrence.
7.Solution To The Issue
If you have anything more than a blown fuse you should contact your electrician or power company. If you are handy enough to check to see if you have a blown fuse than you can do it with a check multi meter form you local big box store.
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You don’t need to spend a lot of money on a meter to check the problem. Make sure the meter is set to volts and a minimum setting of 300 volt before you check. If you don’t you will most likely burn the meter out.
Take one of the leads of the meter and stick it on the bottom of the fuse. (The metal part) take the other lead of the meter and touch it to the metal casing of the fuse box or disconnect. Your should get 120 volt. If you don’t then you have a blown fuse.
8.Can a power outage affect half the house?
This is a common question that homeowners often ask when they experience an outage in their home.
The answer is yes and no. Technically, one power circuit can provide power to multiple outlets, but in practice this usually does not happen.
A single circuit will typically only provide power for receptacles in the same room or adjacent rooms. For example, if you have a kitchen with two receptacles, one in the kitchen and one in the dining room (adjacent), then even if there’s a partial outage, both receptacles will still be working.
However, if you have a living room with two receptacles and one of them is on a different circuit than the other (not adjacent), then both of your receptacles may go out during the outage.
9. What do you do when your house loses power?
If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind is checking for a power outage. It’s easy to find out if it’s just your house or if the whole neighborhood is out, but what do you do next?
Most power outages are caused by an issue with the utility company. If it’s not clear what happened, there are a few things you should do:
Talk to your neighbors about whether they lost power too.
Check to see if any other utilities in your house (like heat, water, etc.) work.
Check around your home for any potential issues with wiring or broken circuits.
Most of the time, when one circuit goes down, others won’t work too—so check these first.
10.Can a breaker partially work?
Breakers are either on or off. They don’t partially work. If your breaker is on, it means the connection to that circuit has power. If your breaker is off, then that circuit has no power.
11. Why is my power out but not my neighbors?
While it’s easy to assume the power is out because of an outage, this isn’t always the case.
The first thing you’ll want to do is look for your breaker or fuse box. If you notice that anything is amiss, it’s time for an electrician.
Next, contact your utility company to verify if there are any reported outages in your area. This will be the most common cause of lost power.
If there aren’t any reported outages in your area then, there may be a problem with your breaker or fuse box. You will then need to consult an electrician.
You should also check for weather-related incidents which can leave you without power, such as heavy winds or ice storms.
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