My Bathroom Light Went Kaput, Help!

Discussion in 'Electrical Forum discussion & Blog' started by jon1jt, Apr 18, 2008.

  1. jon1jt

    jon1jt New Member

    Messages:
    1
    My 3-light fixture above the bathroom mirror stopped working, so I changed the light switch, but it didn't work. There is a fan and ceiling light that works fine. The three have separate switches and are positioned side-by-side.

    I can't afford an electrician, so recommending one will not help my situation.

    Any suggestions are very appreciated. Thanks.
  2. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,152
    Location:
    New England
    While it might be unusual for all three lightbulbs to die at the same time, it is possible...did you change a bulb?

    You might be able to visually detect an open circuit (broken wire, loose wire nut, etc.) if you took the lamp down. Without a multimeter and knowledge of how to use it, there isn't much else you can do.

    When dealing with potentiall hot electrical wiring, it can be lethal, so know what you are doing or you can get hurt or killed.

    If you want to try to look at things safely, turn off the circuit breaker or pull the fuse (if it is a really old panel!) before opening things up.

    Are you sure you have voltage to the switch? The problem may not even be there, it could be further back towards the supply.

    You really need some test equipment, a multimeter, or possibly a test lamp, or voltage detector. None of those are particularly expensive.
  3. Bob NH

    Bob NH In the Trades

    Messages:
    3,317
    Location:
    New Hampshire
    If you can't afford an electrician you must buy a multimeter. Trying to diagnose and repair an electrical problem without a meter is like a blind surgeon trying to repair his own hernia.

    An adequate meter costs somewhere in the range of $10 to $20 at Radio Shack or Sears. I like the digital versions. Analog meters (the kind with pointers) have their uses but cheap ones are more likely to be junk.

    With a meter you can determine where the power is not available, and then apply logic to determine what must be done. You can easily diagnose whether it is caused by a switch, or a bad connection, or a tripped circuit breaker. You can determine where in the circuit the fault is likely to be. And you can determine that the circuit is safe for you to repair it.

    The only thing better than a meter is a friend who has one and knows how to use it. Most men would be glad to help someone who is in distress.
  4. Cookie

    Cookie .

    Messages:
    5,658
    Location:
    .
    I don't know if you know this or not, but, alot of gas companies or electrical companies offers a home protection service. It is pretty affordable and I have used the electrical quite a few times.

    http://retail.dom.com/index.jsp
  5. Alectrician

    Alectrician DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    689
    uhhhh....take it apart and see if the wiring is connected?

    Turn off the switch first.
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