When the lights go out, most members’ first instinct is to call North Alabama Electric Cooperative so our linemen can fix the problem. But not all outages are caused by trouble on the cooperative’s system, which means you might be able to quickly restore power.
In most cases, you may just need to fix a blown fuse or a tripped breaker caused by too much electric current passing through your home’s wiring. If your house is the only one on the street without power, try taking these easy steps to find a quick and safe fix.
“..you might be able to quickly restore power.”
Put safety first — If you hear a “pop” noise from your circuit breaker or fuse box, there may be an electrical short or loose wire. These can be dangerous, so call an electrician to make repairs.
Find your fuse box — Fuse boxes or circuit breakers are usually located in a stairwell, closet, basement or garage. Look for a small, metal door with a series of fuses, which look like cylindrical light bulbs, or circuit breakers, which look like large light switches.
Read the circuit list — On the inside of the door, there should be a list telling you which outlets and lights are connected to each circuit. You can refer to this to find the overloaded circuit.
Replace the fuse — For a fuse box, check the blown fuse to determine if it is a 15-, 20- or 30-amp fuse. Replace the blown fuse with a new one of the same rating.
For a circuit breaker, look for a tripped breaker that has been forced out of position. The direction of a tripped breaker will depend on how it was installed, but it should be out of line with the others. Set the tripped breaker back to the “on” position.