Outlet Question: Open Neutral - Hot / Grnd Reverse?
Asked Feb 7, 2006, 06:09 PM
This past weekend two outlets and one light fixture went dead in my basement after turning on my stereo. I checked the breakers and none had tripped, so I re-set the one in question just to be sure. Still dead.
I haven't been in this house too long, so I thought to check for another breaker box. Didn't find one, but upon returning the lights and outlets were working. I turned on a stereo that was plugged in to one of them, and it went dead again. (The stereo works with no problems in other outlets)
I tested the outlets with a three light tester, and one of the outlets read Open Neutral, the other had all three lights lit, but that is not a reading listed on the tester.
Turned the power off at the box, and removed the plates on the outlets. All the wires were snug there, so I checked the fixture too (I read that neutrals can be shared between fixtures and outlets.) Those wires were fine too.
Turned the power back on and now the tester reads Hot / Ground Reversed for both outlets. I didn't remove any of the wires, just looked to see if they were still attached.
Any ideas about 1) the cause of the problem or 2) why the change in readings? I'm definitely at the end of my limited electrical knowledge and will probably call a professional for this, but wanted to see if anyone here has an idea of something simple I missed.
Sorry for the length of this... Any help would be greatly appriciated. Thanks, Dan