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Kevin
Kevin, Licensed Electrician
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 3080
Experience:  30 years as a Licensed Electrical Contractor in Illinois, 6 year college Electrical Instructor, Former Electrical Inspector, Diploma in Digital Electronics, Former Illinois Licensed Home Inspector
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In changing an electrical wall switch, I accidently tripped

Customer Question

In changing an electrical wall switch, I accidently tripped the breaker. Going to the main breaker box, I find that almost 40 breakers are unmarked. None seem to have been tripped, and I have even turned off some of the more likely breakers (all the way off, of course) and then back on (It's an upstairs bathroom with probably a smaller breaker-15 amp). Confused, I took a multimeter and checked every breaker (grounding the black wire on the breaker case, and touching the usually red wires coming out of the breakers)--ALL SHOWED 120 VOLTS!! Not sure what to do next...
JA: How old is the system in question? And have you consulted an electrician yet?
Customer: The system was totally rebuilt (replaced/modernized) around 1990. I have not consulted an electrician yet.
JA: Do you plan on doing the work yourself?
Customer: If I can figure this out.....
JA: Anything else we should know to help you best?
Customer: Don't know...happy to answer any question.
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Electrical
Expert:  Kevin replied 3 months ago.

Hello and welcome to Just Answer. My name is ***** ***** I will be happy to assist you with your electrical question.

1) 1st off, it is a code requirement within the National Electrical Code to properly label the directory on a panelboard. The panelboard directory needs to be labeled to avoid this in the future.

2) Since no idea as to the breaker, you will need to tone out the circuit with a toner and probe. You can also isolate which breaker by turning off individual breakers 1 at a time and label the panel directory. By process of labeling and/or toning, you will locate the branch circuit breaker.

Customer: replied 3 months ago.
Sorry....could you tell me what are a toner and probe?
Expert:  Kevin replied 3 months ago.

1) A toner is sold at Home Depot and is used to identify circuit wires.

See link shown below:

http://www.homedepot.com/s/wire+toner?NCNI-5

2) You can also isolate the circuit by creating a circuit map of the home. See diagram shown below for an example:

Expert:  Kevin replied 3 months ago.

1) Depending upon the existing electrical connections, a circuit tracer can also be used if the circuit contains wall receptacles. See link shown below:

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Klein-Tools-Digital-Circuit-Breaker-Finder-ET300/202330830

Expert:  Kevin replied 3 months ago.

If you have any additional questions, just let me know and I’ll be glad to answer them for you.

Otherwise, don’t forget to rate me before you log Off.

Thanks...............Kevin:)

Expert:  Kevin replied 3 months ago.

If you have any additional questions, just let me know and I’ll be glad to answer them for you.

Otherwise, don’t forget to rate me before you log Off.

Thanks...............Kevin:)

Expert:  Kevin replied 3 months ago.

If you have any additional questions, just let me know and I’ll be glad to answer them for you.

Otherwise, don’t forget to rate me before you log Off.

Thanks..................Kevin:)

Expert:  Kevin replied 3 months ago.

If you have any additional questions, just let me know and I’ll be glad to answer them for you.

Otherwise, don’t forget to rate me before you log Off.

Thanks..................Kevin:)

Expert:  Kevin replied 3 months ago.

If you have any additional questions, just let me know and I’ll be glad to answer them for you.

Otherwise, don’t forget to rate me before you log Off.

Thanks..................Kevin:)

Expert:  Kevin replied 3 months ago.

If you have any additional questions, just let me know and I’ll be glad to answer them for you.

Otherwise, don’t forget to rate me before you log Off.

Thanks..................Kevin:)

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