Electrical issue

I have 3 electrical outlets in series. All show that power is present through the use of a plug-in tester. Breaker is not tripped. Although the presence of power is indicated, nothing that’s plugged into any of the three outlets will work. There was an issue earlier with the microwave running and then just stopped. Since that time, nothing is working. Power is present but not enough to even run a lamp. Have checked the wires to the outlets and everything looks ok. Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

Call an electrician. Anything less is risking your life and anyone else in the house.

Is the microwave still plugged in? Unplug it and test again. If that’s not it, call an electrician.

Is the microwave oven on the same circuit as the three receptacles?

Assuming the answer is “no”…

If moderate to heavy loads are not working on any of the three receptacles, you probably have a bad connection somewhere in the circuit. This must be fixed ASAP.

I would start by flipping the circuit breaker off and pulling the receptacle that is “closest” to the circuit breaker (electrically speaking). Look for loose connections. If there’s any doubt, replace the receptacle.

If it still doesn’t work, check the hot and neutral connections for the circuit inside the circuit breaker panel. If they look good, replace the circuit breaker.

Moved from General Questions, where you can gather opinions.

samclem moderator

Indication of power by one of those testers that just shows a light is not sufficient. You need a tester that actually tells you what voltage is present. A light may only be telling you that there is stray voltage present on the neutral or ground, but not enough to power a load requiring 110v. If it’s stray voltage, that could likely mean a loose connection. If you don’t know what you’re doing, call an electrician to check it out.

Yea, I am guessing the problem is not an “open” but a high-resistance connection somewhere in the circuit. His indicator has a high impedance and thus gives a reading of some sort.

Unlike a hard open, a high-resistance connection can be dangerous. It could turn into a glowing contact when there’s current in the circuit, which in turn could cause a fire.

1st nit pick. If you have 3 outlets in series you have a problem with your wiring.

How do they show power. What did you use to test them and how did you test them.


These crazy laymen.