What to Do If the Lights Are Out, but Your Breaker Hasn’t Tripped

When you are trying to do something, and a light goes out unexpectedly, it can be annoying. But that annoyance can shift to frustration when checking the light switch, and the circuit breaker doesn’t yield any positive results.

If you want to do a bit more troubleshooting on your own before you call for electrical services, here are some steps to take if the lights are out, but your breaker hasn’t tripped.


Before you go hunting for more hidden issues, take a moment to check the light bulb on the affected light. If you still have incandescent light bulbs, they can be prone to burn out and filament damage.

Also, if you do find that the fault lies with your bulbs, be sure you are using LED light bulbs in the future. They use far less electricity than other types of bulbs and last far longer.


A potential culprit for your lighting problem may surprise you—it could be your ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlet. This type of outlet is generally found in rooms where high moisture is present such as in your bathrooms or kitchen.

When water makes contact with a GFCI outlet, it shuts off the electrical flow to protect you from being electrocuted. The cut-off of electricity can affect the lights as well. To test if the GFCI outlet is the cause of the problem, press the test button on the outlet until you hear a click. If there is no click, then the outlet has tripped, and all you need to do is press the reset button until you hear it click.

If you don’t have GFCI outlets in the wet rooms of your house, it’s time to bring in HedgeHog Electric. We have professional electricians in Salt Lake City all the way down in St George, so you can easily work with top-notch electricians to make your home safer with GFCI outlets.

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A slightly odd but important step to take while looking for the source of your lighting problem is to identify if there are any out-of-place smells. Do you smell something burning, scorched, or unusual smells?

These unidentifiable smells, coupled with your lights being mysteriously out, can indicate that you have a wiring issue that will require professional electrical repairs. Wiring that has gotten loose within your walls can interrupt the proper flow of electrical power and not only short out your lights but represent a serious fire hazard.

Should you suspect loose or damaged wiring, it is time to call in your local professional electricians here at HedgeHog Electric.


If you have followed all these steps and still can’t determine what is going wrong with your lights, you can always rely on HedgeHog Electric’s troubleshooting electrical services.

Rather than waiting for one of our electricians to be available to go by your home, you can get electrical troubleshooting help over the phone. With this service, one of our electricians will guide you through safely troubleshooting your lights—or whatever issue you called about—and help you get your home’s electricity up and running again, no waiting necessary.

To get one of our electricians on the phone for troubleshooting help or to schedule an electrician to visit your home, feel free to contact us today.