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Switch Off / Low Voltage on One Outlet - Switch On / All OK

Switch Off / Low Voltage on One Outlet - Switch On / All OK

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Old 02-02-18, 04:31 PM
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Switch Off / Low Voltage on One Outlet - Switch On / All OK

Just moved into a 45 year old house... There is a light switch in the basement that controls multiple receptacles.. or well, seems to have an impact on multiple receptacles.

Anyway.. how this started... I went to plug in a device and noticed it was only barely powering on.

I ended up tested each outlet on a few of the receptacles. One outlet on each read 52 volts... the other outlet on each, measured 120 volts. These are standard, two 3-prong outlet receptacles..

I noticed a switch off nearby -- new house (to me), unclear what it did... turned the switch on, now everything reads 120 volts.

What could I be dealing with here? Could this simply be a bad switch, or something worse?
 
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  #2  
Old 02-02-18, 04:42 PM
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Move any backstabs at the problem receptacle to the screws and redo the the other connections. Redo any wire nuts. Repeat at the good receptacle.
 
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Old 02-02-18, 04:47 PM
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I'm not sure there are good receptacles.. only 1 seemingly good outlet per receptacle.
 
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Old 02-02-18, 04:51 PM
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What you are calling an "outlet" is a receptacle. Receptacle is where you plug something in. Outlets are any where power is tapped including lights and switches.
 
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Old 02-02-18, 04:54 PM
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Ok, this gets weirder.. I found a second light switch on the other side of the room that was OFF.. Here are my findings... keep in mind, multiple receptacles

Both Switches OFF
Plug 1 (52v)
Plug 2 (120v)

Either Switch On
Plug 1 (120v)
Plug 2 (120v)

Both Switches ON
Plug 1 (45v)
Plug 2 (120v)
 
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Old 02-02-18, 06:04 PM
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Are the switches 3-way switches? (No on/off markingings)
 
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Old 02-02-18, 06:15 PM
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No on/off markings on the switches..
 
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Old 02-02-18, 10:43 PM
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So you have a set of 3-way switches. Tell us all the wires and connections in each switch box including what wire on the common terminal (usually dark gray, the odd colored screw).
 
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Old 02-03-18, 01:55 AM
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Were you having an issue or just measuring voltage?
 
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Old 02-03-18, 07:22 AM
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The issue was that.. I got a space heater in the mail, wanted to plug it in to give it a quick test.

Heater would not come on.. but I noticed the power light came up, but very dim.... after that I started measuring voltages, which came up low... then I started playing with the switches and doing more measuring.
 
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