Open Neutral?

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Old 11-06-16, 04:34 AM
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Open Neutral?

I was helping a friend re-wire his kitchen and dining room lights yesterday and everything was working fine except his back porch light, which is fed from the same circuit. Upon further inspection, we found that there was only 60Vac across the hot and ground. Come to find out that the ground had come loose in one of the junction boxes we installed in the kitchen ceiling. Once we connected the ground, we had 120Vac. I understand that part of things, but what I don't understand is why didn't the porch light work without the ground connected? Do we have an open neutral? I didn't check the voltage between hot and neutral, but will be doing so today. If I have no voltage across hot and neutral, I guess that answers my question.
 
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Old 11-06-16, 04:42 AM
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Hi, assuming it worked be you started the remodel,and the fact you had a loose ground connection,double check all the connections you made and make sure they are all tight.
 
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Old 11-06-16, 05:06 AM
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Hi, assuming it worked be you started the remodel,and the fact you had a loose ground connection,double check all the connections you made and make sure they are all tight.
I'm not positive if it worked beforehand. He disconnected everything and started patching things back together, then I stepped in to help. I'm sure it will become obvious. Was mainly trying to get opinions as to why the light wouldn't work with an open ground considering the neutral is the return path.
 
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Old 11-06-16, 05:17 AM
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Was mainly trying to get opinions as to why the light wouldn't work with an open ground considering the neutral is the return path.
There may be a bootleg ground that has become a bootleg neutral due to changes in the wiring. The original neutral may have later opened before the bootleg ground and the bootleg ground was later connected to a legitimate ground thus providing a new path for the now open neutral. Far fetched I'll admit but just a thought.
 
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Old 11-06-16, 03:15 PM
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He had the neutrals split in one of his other junction boxes. Once I connected all the neutrals together everything worked fine.
 
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