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Old 12-12-2009, 10:59 AM
 
9,074 posts, read 18,625,683 times
Reputation: 8400

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I have an electrical outlet on my front porch that I plug my outdoor christmas lights into. I was using a power strip that I probably should have not been using out doors to plug in three different strings of lights. The power strip got wet in a recent rain and when I went to plug the power strip into the outlet the lights came on for about 2 seconds then went off. Now I don't seem to be getting any juice from the outlet. I throught I tripped a breaker but after checking my breaker box none appear to be tripped.

Any ideas what I did to the outdoor electrical outlet to make it stop working and how I can can fix it? (I've already stopped using the indoor power strip and have bought an outdoor weather proof type). Now I just need to figure out why I'm not getting any juice from the outlet.

Thanks for the tips!

~ NRG
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Old 12-12-2009, 11:03 AM
 
Location: NW. MO.
1,817 posts, read 3,741,396 times
Reputation: 1291
You could turn all power off at the breaker box and replace the outlet and see if that solves the problem.
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Old 12-12-2009, 11:05 AM
 
Location: I think my user name clarifies that.
8,293 posts, read 14,277,755 times
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Sometimes breakers do not appear to be tripped, but they are. I'd bet money that that's where your problem is.

It's also remotely possible that you need to reset the power strip.
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Old 12-12-2009, 11:43 AM
 
Location: Lafayette, Louisiana
14,097 posts, read 14,213,343 times
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I have an outside outlet that is connected to a GFI outlet in the house. Outside outlet gets wet, it trips a GFI outlet in the house. Did you check your GFI outlets in the home?
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Old 12-12-2009, 11:55 AM
 
Location: West Michigan
12,140 posts, read 21,973,631 times
Reputation: 16210
First thought is a GFCI is tripped inside someplace. If it is an older home, sometimes the outside outlets were run through the bathroom GFCI. See if one of those are tripped. Newer homes you cannot (or at least are not supposed to) run them like that, so if you have another outside outlet check to see if that one is a GFCI and if it is tripped. Other than that, breaker is a final bet before changing the outlet.
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Old 12-12-2009, 12:01 PM
 
Location: Lafayette, Louisiana
14,097 posts, read 14,213,343 times
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I don't run Christmas lights, but don't they have a timer switch that has GFI protection?
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Old 12-12-2009, 02:16 PM
Status: "Apple Pie!" (set 6 days ago)
 
Location: Cary, NC
19,561 posts, read 30,982,095 times
Reputation: 16571
I bet there is a GFCI receptacle in the garage that is tripped.
Look near the electrical panel for a receptacle that looks like the one at the lower right on this page:
CPSC GFCI Information (http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/pubs/99.html - broken link)

No worries. It just means that the receptacle is working as intended.
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Old 12-12-2009, 02:42 PM
 
Location: Central Fl
2,901 posts, read 6,610,401 times
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Mike is correct.
If the house meets the current code, any outside receptacle should be protected by a GFCI. Check other outside receptacles on the same circuit. you may find one that has tripped. Resetting it should solve your problem.

That GFCI could be anywhere, dependent on how the electrician wired the circuit. It may be in the garage, etc.

If all GFCI's are ok, then recheck the circuit breakers. Some, when tripped, still appear to be "on". Switch them off, then on to reset.

I doubt that you "fried" the receptacle.

Frank
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Old 12-12-2009, 05:46 PM
 
9,074 posts, read 18,625,683 times
Reputation: 8400
Thumbs up Thanks to all!

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailordave View Post
I have an outside outlet that is connected to a GFI outlet in the house.
Bingo!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bydand View Post
First thought is a GFCI is tripped inside someplace.
Right again!

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeJaquish View Post
I bet there is a GFCI receptacle in the garage that is tripped.
That's the spot!

Quote:
Originally Posted by faithfulFrank View Post
Mike is correct.
If the house meets the current code, any outside receptacle should be protected by a GFCI. Check other outside receptacles on the same circuit. you may find one that has tripped. Resetting it should solve your problem.
Another bulls eye!

Now I know where all the smart city-data folks hang out.

You were all right. I just checked the outlet in my garage next to the breaker box and unlike the outdoor outlet I noticed this one had one of those GFCI "reset" buttons. I pushed the reset button on the outlet in the garage and now the outlet outside is working.

Thanks for the tips everyone! Now I can turn my Christmas lights back on (using the appropriate outdoor power strips this time!). I'm glad to know the GFCI thing is working properly!

Reps all around!
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Old 12-12-2009, 06:17 PM
 
Location: LI/VA/IL
2,480 posts, read 2,981,516 times
Reputation: 6615
We have had the same problems with rain over the years as you. Just recently we had heavy rain and all our outdoor lights and decor tripped the GFI.
After some research my husband has elevated the connections off the ground using stakes-wrapped the connections with electrical tape and put baggies over them. It's raining right now-everything is still on-hopefully this will work in heavy rain.
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