The approach described here is a logical, systematic approach called the 5 Step Troubleshooting Approach. It is a proven process that is highly effective and reliable in helping to solve electrical problems.

This approach differs from troubleshooting procedures in that it does not tell you step by step how to troubleshoot a particular kind of circuit. It is more of a thinking process that is used to analyze a circuit’s behavior and determine what component or components are responsible for the faulty operation. This approach is general in nature allowing it to be used on any type of electrical circuit.

In fact, the principles covered in this approach can be applied to many other types of problem solving scenarios, not just electrical circuits.

The 5 Step Troubleshooting Approach consists of the following:

  • Preparation
  • Observation
  • Definition of Problem Area
  • Identify Possible Causes
  • Determine Most Probable Cause
  • Test and Repair
  • Follow-up

Most Common Electrical Troubleshooting problems:

  • Breakers repeatedly turn off
  • Power lost to certain part of building, breakers are not tripped
  • Lights keep flickering
  • Canned lighting turns off intermittently
  • Ground fault detection breaker keeps tripping off
  • Light or socket feels warm to the touch
  • Wires are smoking, don’t know why