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One section of the house has low voltage, cant take even the smallest load...

One section of the house has low voltage, cant take even the smallest load...

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  #1  
Old 05-30-02, 05:32 PM
T
tcottle
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Question One section of the house has low voltage, cant take even the smallest load...

I have one section in my house that is 'low voltage', anywhere from 10 VAC to 88VAC. I started with the breaker, it didnt trip, but I reset it anyway. That did nothing useful. Started checking the voltage around the rest of the house, only the AC outlets on the one breaker are effected. Replaced the breaker. It is one room and any outlets on one wall. The whole room is out and anywall that touches that room has low voltage. It was working up till about 4 days ago. We added a cable box, and it has not been the same since. I have checked the ballasts on the tube lights, checked for shorts etc.
While I am measuring the voltage and my wife plugs in a 30 W lamp on that circuit, the voltage drops for 86 VAC to 1 or 2 VAC.
I would really like to make this make sense.
I have already disconnected anything that was plugged in and tried it that way too, with the same results.
There has been now smoke or hot smells, sparking or anything else to give up a clue.

Thank ANYONE for help!!!
 
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  #2  
Old 05-30-02, 05:57 PM
J
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The explanation is easy. You have phantom voltage. Your experiment with the lamp was the perfect way to prove it.

The cause is a disconnected wire. If you can get full voltage between hot and ground, then the disconnect is on the neutral wire. Otherwise, it may be on the hot wire.

Shut off the breaker. Pull out every receptacle and every switch on this circuit. If any are using the backstab connections, move the wire to the adjacent screw and tighten firmly. Check all wirenut connections to be sure that all wires are firmly held in place by the wire nut (pull on each wire).

With patience, this is an easy problem to solve.
 
  #3  
Old 05-30-02, 07:51 PM
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FREDDYG_001
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tcottle,You say you added a cable box. Are saying you had cable installed with a cable box. If so, how did they bring the cable in?




Fred
 
  #4  
Old 05-30-02, 08:36 PM
J
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I see what Fred's going for. If you or the cable company drilled a hole through a wall for the cable, they/you could have damaged an electrical cable, thus causing the open circuit I described. If so, the fix may not be so simple.

Like Fred, I'm wondering exactly what "we added a cable box" means.
 
  #5  
Old 05-30-02, 08:47 PM
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jlbos83
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I'll third that mothion. Always look where the hands were last!
 
  #6  
Old 05-31-02, 07:47 AM
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tcottle
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Lightbulb All I did was plug in the power cord

Thank you for the responses. However, all that was done was to plug in the AC cord for the cable box. The cable and such had been pre-existing. I replaced the socket and checked the wiring at that point. Trust me, I am not the person to drill holes in a house, not mechanically gifted.

Thank You Again,
tcottle
 
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