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Phil, Mechanical Engineer
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 8679
Experience:  Retired electrical contractor, 51 years experience.
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My electrician has not been able to solve this problem yet.

Customer Question

My electrician has not been able to solve this problem yet. 2 electric blankets and 2 heating pads have burned out. They were plugged into surge protectors. One of the surge protectors burned and smoked. This has not happened with any other appliances such as the microwave or hair dryer. Different outlets were used, either grounded or ungrounded, so it appears to a whole house issue. My house does have solar panels, which are now shut off, however, a heating pad still smoked after shutting them down. The electrician plugged in testers in the outlets, and voltages were normal. Why would heating pads be a unique fire hazard? Why didn't the surge protectors protect them? I'm now running appliances off of an outlet with GFCI protection and am uneasy about living here.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Electrical
Expert:  Phil replied 1 year ago.

Hello, your electrician might be plenty good enough but he might also be missing a few insights, a second opinion will be a very good idea, but only from one of the best in the area. If you can tell me which direction you are from the center of the nearest city I will see who I can find for you.

... and... indeed it is a very dangerous situation. Probably quite repairable however.

Let me know, we can go from there.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I'm in Pacifica, CA, about 10 miles south of San Francisco
Expert:  Phil replied 1 year ago.

Hello again,

The closest well qualified electrician is in Daly city.

Tell him the complete story and that your online consultant thinks it is

a reverse polarity problem, and possibly the ground wire used as a common or worse... tell him you want a complete written estimate before any corrective actions are taken, ask him to send it to you by email so that you can forward it to you on line consultant.

Then post a link to it here using the attach files link, that is the second from the right end of the tool bar above.

We can go from there without a time limit.