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# Testing Electrical Hypothesis

Submitted By handsomedoodle1
Words 936
Pages 4
Question 1:
In observation I have come home from work to find the entry door light is not working. As I explore though the house I find that the lights inside and outside the house are not working throughout. I have identified this by attempting to turn the lights on in each room with no luck of light. I know that if only one area of the house was affected that the issue would be likely found at the interior breaker of the home, but this is not the case.
In developing a theory, I know none of the lights are working, which is an indicator that the problem is not a bulb issue or an interior breaker issue. I also know that the power company has no reported outages in the area. I do know that the house was built in the 50’s and the electrical panel has not been upgraded since the home was built. Based on this information my hypothesis is that issue is within the main breaker outside the home. Due to the age of the home and electrical panel, it is likely a burnt out fuse that has caused all the lights to not work.
Just to be sure I have tested the interior breakers of the house by flipping them to the off position and back on, still no lights. I also tested the exterior breaker by flipping it to the off position and back on, still no light. Now by replacing the fuse and switching on the lights I have solved the problem and have light throughout the house.
From the research above I have found the problem was in fact a burnt out fuse at the main breaker of the exterior of the house.

Question 2:

It’s dinner time, I have all the ingredients ready to cook but when I go to turn the stove on nothing happens. I look at the knobs to double check they are on in the correct position and they are, in the on position. That’s when I observe that not only is the stove not working but in conjunction with the stove one half of the kitchen lights and electrical is not working either. I learned the stove was not working when I went to cook dinner; it was then that I found that half of the kitchen didn’t work when I started to explore what was and wasn’t working. In attempts to develop a theory, I know the power is not working for half of the kitchen, and all else in the household is working just fine. Based on this information my hypothesis is that I have overloaded the kitchen breaker causing the breaker to pop. To test my hypothesis I will flip all the breaks to the off position and back on. In my attempt to flip all the breakers off I did not cure the problem, therefore my hypothesis is incorrect and will need to revisit other options. My second theory is that my 19 year old stove is old and no longer running correctly. I believe the stove is pulling additional power causing the breaker to pop by overloading it. My hypothesis is that the stove needs to be replaced. To test my hypothesis I will unplug the stove and repeat the steps in flipping the breakers on and back off. By unplugging the stove and flipping the breakers I have confirmed my hypothesis, the stove is has indeed caused the breaker to pop. To be confident the stove needs to be replaced I will have an appliance handyman test the stove and determine what is wrong with it. This way I will be 100% sure it isn’t a simple fix before spending a few hundred on a new appliance that can be saved. In both scenarios the electrical outage could have been a number of things and would have involved much more investigating. Throughout my career in property management I test the scientific method on a daily bases. Many times the electrical outages have to do with tenants overloading the breaker, appliances pulling too much power due to a defect, a nail driven through the electrical wires, electrical panels giving out, and in rare cases the electrical wiring was installed incorrectly. Each and every case is different is some way which has proven that even though the issue seems to be similar it’s not what it really seems. Without using some type of scientific method to find the issues like above, they would be difficult to understand what is wrong, time consuming, and could become costly. In fact by not using a process of which has some type of order the problem may not be determined. When getting involved in larger projects that involve electrical issue it could become dangerous, thus why thinking the possible theories out would be beneficial. I would like to conclude that we use the scientific method in many if not most of our daily activities, it a process that we learn at an early age without knowing what we are doing. Many will refer to it as problem solving.

References
H. Sawyer (2012) Poplar Mechanics. It’s Electrical! How Your Circuit Break Panel Works. http://www.popularmechanics.com/home/improvement/electrical plumbing/how_your_circuit_breaker_works
R. Wilber (2006) AllExperts. Electrical Wiring in the Home/Lights not working. http://en.allexperts.com/q/Electrical-Wiring-Home-1734/lights-working.htm
T. Harris (2012 How Stuff Works. How Circuit Breakers Work. http://electronics.howstuffworks.com/circuit-breaker.htm
Trefil, James, and Robert M. Hazen (2010) The Sciences: An Integrated Approach, 6th ed. John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

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