Ground carrying current. Need help troubleshooting.

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Old 06-30-13, 03:23 PM
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Ground carrying current. Need help troubleshooting.

I am a wiring a run with two lights on it with power coming through the light switch. I had it all the wires preliminarily connected when I flipped the switch to see if it was working and found that current was coming through the ground.

I'm not sure what's happened. I don't think any of the wiring insulation is compromised since I inspected it before running the wire and just checked again on the two ends where I have the wire connected.

When I move the ground in contact the the electrical box (which wasn't done before testing because I was missing the right size screw to ground it to the box), the current appears to drop to zero (or undetectable by my Klein voltage tester). Is it just picking up some phantom current or is there a real problem that needs to be addressed before the wall gets closed up?

Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!
 
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Old 06-30-13, 03:26 PM
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Welcome to the forums.

If you had installed a fluorescent light and had not connected the ground wire......you would very likely see a small voltage on ground. Since the ballast generates high voltage some power can be induced on the ballast case and fixture.

Usually on most ballasts it'll say "must be grounded"
 
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Old 06-30-13, 03:30 PM
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Thanks for the response! I should note that the light fixtures themselves haven't been hooked up yet. I was just testing the wiring to make sure current was flowing as I would expect before moving to the next step.
 
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Old 06-30-13, 03:33 PM
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Yup....and as long as the ground wires are connected to the fixtures....all will be well.
 
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Old 06-30-13, 04:33 PM
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Aside from the touchy feely test, how did you determine there was current on the grounding wire??
 
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