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  • FIRST POST
    lh_111
    Sockets not working downstairs - no appliance seems faulty?
    • #1
    • 16th Oct 09, 12:28 PM
    Sockets not working downstairs - no appliance seems faulty? 16th Oct 09 at 12:28 PM
    Hi, hope someone here can offer advice. Last night all our power tripped, and could not be reset. By a process of elimination we located the fault to the downstairs sockets, and checked all appliances one by one. However, even with all unplugged and all sockets off, the power still trips when the 'downstairs sockets' switch is on. All others (upstairs, lights, shower, oven etc) are fine. We do have damp in one of the downstairs rooms, which is being dealt with in 2 weeks (new damp course, replaster etc) and an electrician will be present then. Can damp walls cause a rcd to trip and not be reset? I'm slightly loathed to get work done by an electrician which may have to be ripped out in 2 weeks when the builders are in. Any help very greatly appreciated. Thanks.
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    • #2
    • 16th Oct 09, 12:59 PM
    • #2
    • 16th Oct 09, 12:59 PM
    If all the appliances are unplugged, then obviously there is a problem with either the downstairs socket wiring (including the ring circuit or spur circuits) , or plug socket themselves.

    You mention that there is a problem with damp, look around the sockets for damp, in attempt to e isolate an individual socket.

    It really depends upon how comfortable you are working with electricity to advise you further
  • lh_111
    • #3
    • 16th Oct 09, 1:31 PM
    • #3
    • 16th Oct 09, 1:31 PM
    Hi, thanks for your reply. I am not confident with working with electricity, and shall not be. I was really just wondering if the damp could be the cause of the fault. As I have work being carried out in a couple of weeks I was wondering whether to just cope until then - I have important appliances running on an extention lead at present. I am concerned about getting an electrician in, paying for work, only to have the walls ripped apart in two weeks.
    • maninthestreet
    • By maninthestreet 16th Oct 09, 2:37 PM
    • 15,312 Posts
    • 13,859 Thanks
    maninthestreet
    • #4
    • 16th Oct 09, 2:37 PM
    • #4
    • 16th Oct 09, 2:37 PM
    Possibly just a wiring fault in one of the sockets - with the power off (VERY IMPORTANT!!), unscrew the sockets from the wall and check if there are any loose wires or wires with chaffed insulation.
    "You were only supposed to blow the bl**dy doors off!!"
    • olias
    • By olias 16th Oct 09, 4:36 PM
    • 3,503 Posts
    • 3,974 Thanks
    olias
    • #5
    • 16th Oct 09, 4:36 PM
    • #5
    • 16th Oct 09, 4:36 PM
    I agree with the above post, however if you are not confident with electrics and are able to cope with extension leads, can you not last 2 weeks until your planned work gets underway? Even if you need to get a couple of extra long extension leads to run from upstairs, they should only cost you 20-30?

    Olias
    • muckybutt
    • By muckybutt 16th Oct 09, 5:21 PM
    • 3,618 Posts
    • 3,419 Thanks
    muckybutt
    • #6
    • 16th Oct 09, 5:21 PM
    • #6
    • 16th Oct 09, 5:21 PM
    If its the RCD thats tripped and the mcb that supplies power to the affected sockets hasnt tripped then it sounds like theres an earth to neutral fault or is it an rcbo that supplies the sockets then again theres an earth fault but that could be either live or neutral that is faulty, yes damp could well be the cause for it tripping.
    If you feel confident enough turn the whole fuse board off at the main circuit breaker and go to the affected area that you think could be the cause, then unscrew the sockets from the wall if they are damp then you will see condensation or corrosion on the socket rear, let the affected sockets dry out and then try resetting the rcd.
    If in doubt though leave well alone and leave it to the sparky.
    • zax47
    • By zax47 16th Oct 09, 7:02 PM
    • 1,253 Posts
    • 928 Thanks
    zax47
    • #7
    • 16th Oct 09, 7:02 PM
    • #7
    • 16th Oct 09, 7:02 PM
    Added to what people have suggested, you've also had lots of useful advice/answers on the other forums you've asked this question on.
  • DVardysShadow
    • #8
    • 16th Oct 09, 7:24 PM
    • #8
    • 16th Oct 09, 7:24 PM
    If its the RCD thats tripped and the mcb that supplies power to the affected sockets hasnt tripped then it sounds like theres an earth to neutral fault or is it an rcbo that supplies the sockets then again theres an earth fault but that could be either live or neutral that is faulty, yes damp could well be the cause for it tripping.
    Originally posted by muckybutt
    Actually, an RCD will trip for both live to earth and neutral to earth faults, without necessarily taking out the MCB, particulalry if the casue is dampness.
    • muckybutt
    • By muckybutt 17th Oct 09, 2:49 PM
    • 3,618 Posts
    • 3,419 Thanks
    muckybutt
    • #9
    • 17th Oct 09, 2:49 PM
    • #9
    • 17th Oct 09, 2:49 PM
    Actually, an RCD will trip for both live to earth and neutral to earth faults, without necessarily taking out the MCB, particulalry if the casue is dampness.
    Originally posted by DVardysShadow
    Bad discrimination tho if it does !
  • DVardysShadow
    Bad discrimination tho if it does !
    Originally posted by muckybutt
    Absolutely not necessarily the case. Consider a 100mA leakage to earth. Correct behaviour is for an RCD [rated to trip at 30mA] to trip, but for the MCB [rated to trip at say 32A] to remain closed.
    • waynehayes
    • By waynehayes 17th Oct 09, 7:08 PM
    • 418 Posts
    • 114 Thanks
    waynehayes
    It's not the job of a circuit breaker to operate if there is an earth fault, that's what the RCD is for.
  • lh_111
    Thanks all for the answers. We have decided to just get by for the next couple of weeks and then get an expert to look at it.
    • timmmers
    • By timmmers 21st Oct 09, 3:37 AM
    • 3,482 Posts
    • 20,075 Thanks
    timmmers
    This may be useful /
    http://www.lidl.co.uk/uk/home.nsf/pages/c.o.20091026.p.Heavy-Duty_Extension_Lead.ar7

    t
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