How to Reset Circuit Breakers
by Kim Hopkins
What can you do if you’ve lost power and you suspect it might be due to a circuit breaker tripping off?
If you check the circuit breaker handle and it’s flipped to the “OFF” position, then you know the culprit. However, a circuit breaker might be the culprit even if it says “ON.” Sometimes a breaker will trip off internally, without flipping its handle to the “OFF” position.
Here’s what to do if you have a loss of power that you suspect is due to a tripped circuit breaker, whether the breaker handle is in the “ON” or “OFF” position:
1. Shut down any computer equipment or other electronics that might be affected by a loss of power.
2. Go to your circuit breaker panel and firmly flip the first breaker OFF and then back ON again.
3. Do the same thing with each circuit breaker until you have flipped all of the circuit breakers OFF and then back ON again.
4. Now check and see whether the device that didn’t have power is back on again.
5. If your power has been restored… you’re done! If your power is still out and it’s not a problem with the electric utility company, it’s time to call an electrician. As a note, if you’re frequently losing power due to flipped circuit breakers, you may want to get an estimate on adding circuits to handle your electrical demand.
About 25% of all Los Angeles home and apartment electrical power problems can be solved by following these steps. Good Luck!
Kim Hopkins has been an electrician in Los Angeles for over thirty years, and is happy to answer any electrical questions you might have. He can be reached through his website www.TheElectricConnection.com.