Weird Wiring Problem

Reply

  #1  
Old 01-16-07, 03:10 AM
0
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 3
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Weird Wiring Problem

60+ yr old house, wiring looks copper throughout, obviously replaced at later point. Upper floor only 2 rooms, all receptacles and lights seem to be on the same circuit (fuse panel). The problem is always present, at times acts intermittent resulting in one of 3 wiring conditions. Using Sperry's 3-prong tester, most of the time I read "open ground". If I connect e.g. TV to one of the receptacles, sometimes I get "hot/neu reverse", sometimes "correct". Sometimes with a light load (e.g. only FAX connected) and through the night circuit falls back to "correct", but changes immediately to either "hot/neu reverse" or "open ground" when another load on any of the receptacles of this same circuit. The nature appears rather random. Any comments?
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 01-16-07, 04:43 AM
R
Member
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Central New York State
Posts: 13,973
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
The open ground means that someone installed three prong receptacles when they should not have.

Replace ALL the receptacles upstairs (and probably elsewhere in the house as well) with two prong receptacles. This will fix the underlying problem, and that is a loose connection. When you install the new two prong receptacles, do NOT use the back stab connections on the receptacles, but rather use the screw terminal connections.
 
  #3  
Old 01-16-07, 05:22 AM
0
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 3
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Yes, I noticed 3 prong receptacles installed downstairs, however they act as normal 2 prong ones at all times - there is no "correct" or "hot/neu reverse", only "open ground". Please keep in mind that the problem upstairs is intermittent, and it often depends on the load. E.g. when TV cap is charging before actually turning the TV on, it pulls more current, causing odd behaviour in the circuit. If 1 contact (either wire or within a panel) is pulled closer to another through resulting el-magnetism, this could explain occasional "correct" by having missing ground terminated in the receptacle metal box connect to neutral there. But it doesn't explain reversal of neutral and hot. I could be wrong, of course. Please help before this place burns down!
 
  #4  
Old 01-16-07, 05:26 AM
R
Member
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Central New York State
Posts: 13,973
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I told you the problem.

Replace ALL the receptacles upstairs (and probably elsewhere in the house as well) with two prong receptacles. This will fix the underlying problem, and that is a loose connection. When you install the new two prong receptacles, do NOT use the back stab connections on the receptacles, but rather use the screw terminal connections.
 
  #5  
Old 01-16-07, 05:37 AM
0
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 3
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Ok, I'll replace them all and update.
 
  #6  
Old 01-16-07, 05:48 AM
R
Member
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Central New York State
Posts: 13,973
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Your underlying problem is a loose connection that is intermittent. Sometimes it works, sometimes it does not work. (The reading of hot/neutral reverse tells us this, and is due to the open connection and induced voltage.)

The only way to find this is to open up each and every receptacle and physically check the connections. Since you need to get rid of those three prong receptacles anyway, you may as well do both tasks at once.
 
Reply
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: