Investigating a power outage

A common problem that can occur is a power outage to part or all of you home.

Before calling out an electrician – do a few basic checks to find out if it is a blown fuse/ RCD,  A power outage or a faulty appliance causing a short.

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What to do?

If it’s a total power outage – check with the neighbours. If you’re not the only one experiencing problems then it’s a Western Power issue. Phone them on 13 13 51 to confirm, then get the candles out and prepare to wait it out!

If it’s just you – check the mains power board for a tripped switch (the switch will either be in the ‘off’ position or in a neutral position). Flip the switch back to the ‘on’ position and carry on with what you were doing.

If a fuse has blown – Phone us. Or if you are quite handy – turn the power off at the mains switches, then pull each wedge out until you find the blown fuse (the one that is usually blackened in parts). When you find the faulty fuse, replace the wire with the same size – to do this you need to loosen the screws on the fuse wedge and curl the fuse wire in a clockwise direction around the first screw and tighten it again.  Thread the wire through the hole in the middle of the wedge and wind the wire around the second screw and tighten again. Make sure the wire is clipped off close to the screw.  You don’t want any long tails of fuse wire hanging out.  Push the fuse wedge back into the base and turn on the main switches… then carry on with your day

If the switch won’t stay in the ‘on’ position then it’s likely that you have an appliance causing a short. Go back into the house and unplug your appliances (the usual suspects are kettles, toasters and vacuum cleaners) – it’s a process of elimination unfortunately – plug each appliance back in and test the RCD – eventually you will find the culprit – then either take to a repair shop or buy a new one.

If it’s not an appliance, and it’s not a blown fuse – then you’re buggered and it’s time to call in the professionals.

If it’s a dire emergency and you simply can’t live without power until the next morning – then ring us and ask for an emergency callout but be prepared – we will charge like a wounded bull!

Otherwise ring us and ask for our earliest next day appointment – it’s easier on the wallet!

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