Last Sunday evening, we were relaxing in the living room. It was about 9:30 and the kids were already in bed. Our American friend Benjamin was staying the night. We decided to watch a video and then the lights went out. We have plenty of windows and light outside so it was not too dark. We checked around and the electricity was not out in the building, just in our apartment. Jon looked at the breaker box and the breaker was pretty warm, but it was not thrown. After trying to get the electricity to come back on for a few minutes we realized that we were going to be out of power all night. It was too late to call anyone. The bedroom heaters and bed heaters had been on for a little while, so it was not as bad as it could have been. We gave Benjamin some extra blankets for the couch and went to bed. Our bed was not toasty warm, but it was not freezing either. We snuggled down in the covers and went to sleep. The kids did not even notice anything was wrong until the next morning. We had hot tea and oatmeal for breakfast (we have a gas stove). It was quite chilly. We could even see our breath inside! We called Margaret (a Chinese sister) and she called someone to come look at it for us.
"Right here is the problem" Jon is on the phone with Margaret who was our translator. This guy left to go buy the part and I took pics of what was wrong.
ooooh, I don't think that is supposed to look like that! The electrician said that the breaker was really too small. He bought one a little bigger and replaced it for us.
Including going to buy the part, he was probably finished in about an hour. The cost for this repair, parts and labor? 80 yuan! That is about $15.
We were very thankful to have electricity that evening!