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240 v. Problems to the other garage

Home Improvement Asked by Wig on December 13, 2020

I have an electrical issue. I have a garage that is about 150 ft from the main house. Electric has been fine since we’ve moved in 10 hrs ago but now there is very little power (enough to turn on led light on a 18 v battery charger) .

The power is supplied from the main breaker box in the house where I have a 60 amp breaker that feeds the 2 main lines to the breaker box in the garage listed. I’ve Installed a new breaker in both boxes and tested the power. I have 244 volt coming in to the lines at the house and only 1 of the lines have power at the garage one has 121V and the other has 5V.

I’ve switched the lines at the breaker in the house. (figuring it would switch which line had 121V and which one has 5 Vin it).

After switching at house side and going to the garage, I TESTED THE LINES AND THEY WERE THE SAME AS BEFORE I SWITCHED THE LINES !

I am out of ideas, any advice would be appreciated.

One Answer

Open hot in the garage feeder

What you are seeing points to a break, or open, in one of the hot wires going from the main panel to the garage. With the all-too-common setup of a directly buried cable, this isn't all that uncommon a failure mode. I'd first turn the breaker going to the garage off and undo and redo the terminations on both ends of the cable with an inch-pound torque wrench set as per the labeling on the devices. If retorquing the connections doesn't fix the issue, then I'd be suspecting a broken underground wire, say due to a rodent chewing it. An electrician might be able to locate the break with special tools, but otherwise, it requires replacing the feeder outright, preferably with individual wires in a buried conduit, which isn't as likely to get gnawed to bits.

Answered by ThreePhaseEel on December 13, 2020

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