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Old 12-26-2013, 09:48 PM   #1
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Electric Circuit - Unusual Behavior


I live in a house constructed in the mid-80s. I've mapped the circuits and know that the hall and master bath and master bedroom are on a single circuit.

The other day we noticed a funny smell from the master bath (my wife says fish, and I say crab). We flushed the drains with water and clog buster, and then placed and electric scent candle to freshen the air.

This morning my wife noticed that the candle was not on, and that the upper receptacle in the duplex was blackened. She removed the plug and the plug was burnt. Fortunately the circuit blew at the panel.

I replaced the duplex receptacle and trimmed wire about 3/4 inch past the burned wire. The new receptacle is in and the tester says the circuit is okay. Voltage is at about 124.6.

What is different is that the master bedroom lighted switches (one for the overhead light and one for the duplex receptacle on the adjacent wall) appear to be flickering.

Any thoughts about what may be going on with the circuit?



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Old 12-26-2013, 11:59 PM   #2
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Sounds like you may have some loose connections. Are these receptacles "back -stabbed"? I.e. wires pushed into holes behind the receptacle instead of wrapped around the screws? I've seen that cause both the smell and the burning you describe.

I've seen many an illuminated switch flicker before. There's probably nothing wrong with that, but I will let some of the more knowledgeable members add their input.


Last edited by Kyle_in_rure; 12-27-2013 at 12:04 AM.
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Old 12-27-2013, 06:04 AM   #3
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Pull open the box and check all of the wire connections---flickering means arcing,usually---loose wire nut---bad wire---something is not right and will soon over heat. Do not ignore this---call in a pro if it is beyond your skills.--Mike----
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Old 12-27-2013, 08:01 AM   #4
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Those neon lighted switches do sometimes flicker as they get older.

Last edited by joed; 12-27-2013 at 11:46 AM.
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Old 12-27-2013, 10:05 AM   #5
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Thanks for all your input. I'll check the switch connections tonight.
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Old 12-27-2013, 11:51 AM   #6
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One thing I have found around here is the lack of use of wire nuts during that time.

All the neutrals and hots are crimped and then taped over.


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