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HELP - live to earth fault - where to begin?

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nigel101

from United Kingdom

Joined: 12 Aug 2008
Posts: 13
Location: United Kingdom

PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2008 7:36 pm Reply with quote

I put new spotlights in my BEDroom and when i turned on the bathroom light the shaver and main bathroom light went, ive changed the bulb 4 times, changed the main bathroom light, changed the wall switch, changed my bedroom light and still my bathroom and shaver will not come on, whats happened? I cant figure it out.

THEN>>
So then I got a brand new light fitting and changed it in the bathroom then all the lights went in the house, and when I press the fuse box on it flashes and goes back to off, so now all lights are off. All I can think is I toughed onto the bathroom light to cut cleaner wire I might have damaged the wire.

3hours later
Electrician has just gone, fault not fixed, turns out it wasn't to do with me fixing the light. He disconnected all the first floor switches but still no power goes to any light. He said theres a live to earth fault somewhere in the wires. I'm guessing it must be the bathroom wires. Although all the lights and switches where disconnected so he said it cant be the bathroom wires. ?!?!?

I take it this is a hard fault to find?

Charges 12.50 per hour that ok?
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Pens

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2008 9:21 pm Reply with quote

Although 12.50/hr is very cheap, as he didn't find the fault it's very expensive!

When you say you fitted a new spotlight, was that just a fitting change or did you wire in a new fitting?

Can you post a picture of your new fitting and connections please.
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sparkybird

from United Kingdom

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2008 9:23 pm Reply with quote

Depends where you are, but 12.50 per hour sounds well cheap. However, it'll be expensive if he doesn't know what he's doing!

Fault finding can be hard and impossible to quote for, so I tend to say to clients - pay me for an hour (or two) and after that if i've not fixed it I can give you a better idea of price. That way you can have some control over it.

If the fault has only appeared after you fiddled with the lights, odds on it's something you have done - so that should narrow it down a bit. be honest and tell him where you did work as this will speed up the fault finding

Good luck

SB
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sparkyspike

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2008 9:58 pm Reply with quote

It shouldn't take 3 hours for an electrician to find the location of a phase to earth fault.. Fixing it would be a different matter.
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nigel101

from United Kingdom

Joined: 12 Aug 2008
Posts: 13
Location: United Kingdom

PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2008 10:04 pm Reply with quote

thanks for your reply. im in a village in liverpool.

what happened was when I changed my light in my bedroom the light in the bathroom went pop. Although after the bedroom worked fine.

I changed the light in the bathroom incase it was the fitting. And all the lights in the house went.

So it must be the wires in the bathroom. As when I bent them the plastic sleeve fell off in bits.

But its got more pain in the a** as the loft floor has been boarded and ill need to cut the floor to get to the bathroom light wires.

Hopefully it will be the bathroom wires if not this could be one major job.

I might be getting this wrong but he disconnected all upstairs switches and lights and the fuse button still wouldnt go in. He said its a live to earth fault but you should still get power to the first light on the ring/loop/circut.


Last edited by nigel101 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 10:11 pm, edited 1 time in total
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sparkyspike

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2008 10:09 pm Reply with quote

Are the bathroom and bedroom circuits on separate breakers?
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securespark

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2008 10:09 pm Reply with quote

If you changed a fitting then some lights stopped working, chances are you've broken the loop. This could explain why the bedroom light worked but the others did not.

Then when you changed the bathroom fitting, you could have introduced an L/E fault somewhere there.

Memo to self: make a note of, or photograph, connections before arming yourself with a screwdriver.
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nigel101

from United Kingdom

Joined: 12 Aug 2008
Posts: 13
Location: United Kingdom

PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2008 10:14 pm Reply with quote

sparkyspike wrote:
Are the bathroom and bedroom circuits on separate breakers?


he said its on one big loop with no beakers and we get away with it because theres just two living there so we dont use up lots of elecritc.
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nigel101

from United Kingdom

Joined: 12 Aug 2008
Posts: 13
Location: United Kingdom

PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2008 10:18 pm Reply with quote

securespark wrote:
If you changed a fitting then some lights stopped working, chances are you've broken the loop. This could explain why the bedroom light worked but the others did not.

Then when you changed the bathroom fitting, you could have introduced an L/E fault somewhere there.

Memo to self: make a note of, or photograph, connections before arming yourself with a screwdriver.


When he looked at the bedroom light he said ive connected it wrong, thats why the bathroom light went.

And yeah when I did the bathroom like I pulled on the wire to cut it so the wire was not damaged and that is when the big problem happened. So it must be there.

Guess tomorrow ill cut up the loft board see if I can change the wires around in the bathroom. Take it L/E is just somewhere there touching.

THANKS FOR YOUR HELP GUYS/GIRLS

Its werid because when I first connected up the bedroom light i copyed it from the original one. But it worked for month+ so it must have been connected right.
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GaryMo

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2008 6:04 am Reply with quote

nigel101 wrote:


I might be getting this wrong but he disconnected all upstairs switches and lights and the fuse button still wouldnt go in.


He should have the ability to identify the type of fault and if it still exists by using an Insulation Resistance meter, not an MCB!

I can just imagine it - landing light disconnected - BANG - not that one, I'll try bedroom one - BANG - not that one, I'll try.......... icon_rolleyes.gif
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ceraunic_level

from United Kingdom

Joined: 04 Nov 2007
Posts: 90
Location: London,
United Kingdom

PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2008 6:09 am Reply with quote

So it must be the wires in the bathroom. As when I bent them the plastic sleeve fell off in bits.

You sure its plastic, unusual for the insulation on fall off unless its old rubber type cables. (Or does the cable go through loft insulation?) By disturbing it, the insulation may have come away creating a possible short. Which would mean replacing the cable!
Did your electrician do an insulation resistance test?

Oh, and I'm only a student but 12.50 is nowt (for somebody who knows what their doing)
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nigel101

from United Kingdom

Joined: 12 Aug 2008
Posts: 13
Location: United Kingdom

PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2008 7:36 am Reply with quote

TOday Ill go in the loft and try and swap the wires over.

BEDROOM
One he said I may have wired wrong but it worked for a month.
In the pic you can see red, neutral, grey, I connected it live>live, neutral>neutral, grey>earth. But theres a hiden bare wire cable which must be earth and the grey one he says must go with the neutral as it will be the switch.


BATHROOM
thats the plastic grey that is coming away from the wire. Must be a spur right as theres only 1 live, 1 neutural and 1 switch?


Last edited by nigel101 on Wed Aug 13, 2008 7:45 am, edited 1 time in total
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nigel101

from United Kingdom

Joined: 12 Aug 2008
Posts: 13
Location: United Kingdom

PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2008 7:42 am Reply with quote

GaryMo wrote:
nigel101 wrote:


I might be getting this wrong but he disconnected all upstairs switches and lights and the fuse button still wouldnt go in.


He should have the ability to identify the type of fault and if it still exists by using an Insulation Resistance meter, not an MCB!

I can just imagine it - landing light disconnected - BANG - not that one, I'll try bedroom one - BANG - not that one, I'll try.......... icon_rolleyes.gif


Yeah he had a Insulation Resistance meter and said its a live>earth fault.
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nigel101

from United Kingdom

Joined: 12 Aug 2008
Posts: 13
Location: United Kingdom

PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2008 8:57 am Reply with quote

Ive taken up floor boards in loft and separated all the wires and still fuse doesn't go in. There also no damagae the wire and its clipped in so i havent pulled all the wire only the bit i can see. Im really puzzled. I found some nuts so maybe a squirrel has cut the wire and when ive pulled it maybe ive pulled them L/E together.


Last edited by nigel101 on Wed Aug 13, 2008 9:37 am, edited 1 time in total
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JohnD

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2008 9:34 am Reply with quote

nigel101 wrote:
you can see red, neutral, grey, I connected it live>live, neutral>neutral, grey>earth.

what made you think grey was earth? In a lighting circuit, black might not be neutral either.

I think you need to find a better electrician.
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