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What to do When your Home Goes Dark: Power Outage 101

Alpha and Omega Electric cares about your safety and the safety of your home.  If your neighborhood has suffered a power outage and you require immediate attention, please contact your electric utility company for assistance.

For most residents of Seattle and the greater Puget Sound Region, your power utility company is Seattle City Light.  Their contact information is:

  •  (206) 684-7400…Outage Hotline 
  •  (206) 684-3000…Call Center

 

For those serviced by Snohomish County Public Utility District (PUD), their contact information is:

  • (425) 783-1001…Available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
  • (877) 783-1001…Toll-free

 

Isolated Power Outage in your Home

If you have suffered a power outage that is isolated to your home, Alpha and Omega Electric is once again here to help.  You can contact us for immediate assistance at:

  • (425) 337-3006…Office Phone
  • (425) 327-2609…Cell Phone

 

Please note, however, that you may be able to fix your power outage issue on your own.  Please consult our checklist below.  If our recommended steps are unable to restore your power, please contact us for further assistance.

Power Outage Checklist

1.  Check the GFCI receptacles in your home (especially those in your bathroom(s), kitchen, garage, and outdoor area).

A GFCI outlet is a specific type of electrical outlet.  GFCI stands for ground fault circuit interrupter.  These outlets are easy to identify.  They include two small buttons on them labeled “test” and “reset.”

GFCI outlets monitor the flow of energy through a circuit.  If there is an imbalance, the outlet trips the circuit.  This basically means that it cuts off the electricity.

When a GFCI receptacle is working properly, the “reset” button is pressed in.  If the receptacle trips, the “reset” button pops out.  This may be the cause of your power outage.  In an attempt to restore power, simply press the “reset” button back into place.

2.  Check your Circuit Breaker Panel

At times, the loss of residential power is due to a circuit breaker tripping.  A circuit breaker trips because a certain electrical circuit in your home has been overloaded.  Circuit breakers are located in your home’s circuit breaker panel.

In trying to restore power, first locate your circuit breaker panel.  Once found, open the panel door.  This should expose all of the circuit breakers in your panel.  Simply turn off each circuit breaker.  Then, turn each circuit breaker back on.

3.  Check any Sub-panels

Sub-panels are similar to your home’s main circuit breaker panel.  The main difference is that sub-panels are smaller in size.  Nevertheless, they too contain circuit breakers.  These breakers, like those in a main panel, can trip and cause an electrical power disruption in one’s home.

To check your sub-panel(s), please follow the steps listed above for circuit breaker panels.  For any circuit breakers located in a sub-panel, simply turn them off and then turn them back on.

4.  Check for any isolated wall switches

This step often applies to new homeowners.  Please note that not all homes are wired in one universal way.  The wiring for homes can definitely be unique.  While most of us are used to one switch controlling all of the power to a particular area of a home, there could in fact be two or more (depending on how your home is wired).

If you have lost power to a certain area of your home, check the immediate area.  Look for an isolated wall switch that you may not have noticed in the past.  If you do find one, try turning this switch on.  Hopefully, this has resulted in power to the affected area of your home.

5.  Check for Extension Chords or Power Strips

Power outages in a home do not always mean that an entire home, or an entire area of a home, is without power.  There are definitely those times when a power outage is isolated to one or more: appliances, lights, office equipment devices, etc.

If this describes your current situation, please check to see if the item without power is plugged into an extension cord or power strip.  If it is, the loss of power may be due to a fault or error in the cord or strip.  You can simply unplug the item from the cord/strip and plug it directly into a wall outlet.  If the item regains power, chances are you need a new extension cord or power strip.

The above checklist is meant to serve as a helpful guide to restore your power without the immediate need for an electrical service provider.  Alpha and Omega Electric knows that some power outages may, in fact, require professional assistance.  If the checklist above did not solve your immediate concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us for further assistance.

We care about your safety.  We care about your home.  We care about your power.

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