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Old 11-06-2011, 12:07 PM   #1
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Outdoor floodlight short.


After removing some tree roots I noticed that my outdoor flood light would trip the breaker. So today I started digging the dirt around the area where I was pulling roots. In vain to see if I had broken a power cable. I didnt notice any visible breaks. The images below show the power cables and the junction box, one of the power cables is live and the other is dead. Breaker is currently ON and the indoor switch is in the off position. I have already removed the flood light fixtures. What else should i be checking?

Thanks for your help.



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Old 11-06-2011, 12:14 PM   #2
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Outdoor floodlight short.


disconnect the 115v wires at the floods let them hang open and turn the power on...if you trip the breaker you scored a wire on that BX run out...did you run you fingers along the wire to see if you hit it....if it doesn't trip check the floods for 115V to neutral then to ground from the Hot any pipe water or electrical box flood was on

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Old 11-06-2011, 12:20 PM   #3
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Outdoor floodlight short.


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disconnect the 115v wires at the floods let them hang open and turn the power on...if you trip the breaker you scored a wire on that BX run out...did you run you fingers along the wire to see if you hit it....if it doesn't trip check the floods for 115V to neutral then to ground from the Hot any pipe water or electrical box flood was on

I think I messed up. I just turned on the light switch which caused the breaker to trip. I then checked the junction box and wires outside and they are still live. I guess these wires have nothing to do with my outdoor flood lights?
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Old 11-06-2011, 02:01 PM   #4
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Outdoor floodlight short.


see you would of never know that if you didn't pull the roots out...shut the breaker and remove the black wire that goes into it with a meter set for OHMs check it to the metal or ground see if you read anything. you don't want any bounce on the meter 0.00..put the breaker ON without the wire and check it in VOLTS setting on the meter to ground 115V no trip...
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Old 11-06-2011, 02:06 PM   #5
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Outdoor floodlight short.


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see you would of never know that if you didn't pull the roots out...shut the breaker and remove the black wire that goes into it with a meter set for OHMs check it to the metal or ground see if you read anything. you don't want any bounce on the meter 0.00..put the breaker ON without the wire and check it in VOLTS setting on the meter to ground 115V no trip...
The wires I showed you and the ones I dug up are not related to the flood lights? I ask since when the breaker is off there is still power in the j box and one of the two wires in the dirt.
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Old 11-06-2011, 02:32 PM   #6
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Outdoor floodlight short.


were are you reading power in one of those wires in the dirt??and most likely the no powered one is a switch on/off wire pull.were do those wire terminate whats the load
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Old 11-06-2011, 04:51 PM   #7
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Outdoor floodlight short.


It may be just me, but that buried wire doesn't look like its UF cable. It looks like NM-B, which is NOT for outdoor use.
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Old 11-06-2011, 05:53 PM   #8
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Outdoor floodlight short.


it's within 12" of the house foundation...just kidding

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