Electrical Wiring in the Home/Wiring problem


QUESTION: For some reason when I plug in an electrical device such as a fan or window unit to my outlet they burn up, it seems like they run with too much power, its a new addition, is it possible to have too much power running to an outlet? Or is there a wiring problem?

ANSWER: Check and see how many breakers you have to turn off to get the outlet to shut off. If it is 2, either side by side and connected or 2 mixed in the box, then you have 220 volts.

You can also plug a lamp into a regular outlet, and then into the problem outlet. If the lamp is much brighter, then you have 220 volts.

How to fix it would depend if the breakers are next to each other and connected, or 2 random breakers.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: I plugged in a lamp and it does get noticeably brighter, I also looked at the breaker its on and there is 2 together, so any suggestions on how to fix this problem??

OK, this outlet was meant to be a 220 volt outlet, probably for an air conditioner.  If you are comfortable working in the breaker panel, remove the white wire from one of the breakers and connect it to the neutral bar, which should already have a lot of white wires on it. You will just be using one breaker.  Let me know if there is not a white wire on the breaker. Be very careful. Do not touch any metal in the box. Some metal parts will have power all of the time. Turn the breaker off when working on it.  
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Electrical Wiring in the Home

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Bob Sponaugle


Just about any home wiring question. (not appliance repair) I have done all kinds of home wiring for myself, including adding a new breaker box, etc. Please, questions from North America only. Please be specific with details.

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