switch won't shut off current

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  #1  
Old 06-25-02, 04:56 PM
M
magyar
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switch won't shut off current

Hello,

Probably a dumb question for a 1st post but.......

I've been replacing the lamps in my basement recently and I came
across 1 strange one where I can measure a voltage (80 to 90 volts) between the hot & neutral wires that connect to the lamp
fixture when the switch is off. If it's on, I measure the full 115 or so.

I've traced the hot & neutrals back in the circuit and I can't find
anything (obviously) miswired.

Can anybody tell me what's going on?

Thanks!

I.M.
 
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  #2  
Old 06-25-02, 04:59 PM
J
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I use this response at least twice a week. It's phantom voltage. Buy yourself an analog voltmeter to supplement that digital one you have.
 
  #3  
Old 06-26-02, 07:45 AM
M
magyar
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I had already read the phantom voltage document,
but I didn't think that's what I was seeing since if I
use one of those simple voltage presence testers with 2 probes
and small bulb, the bulb lights up, though not as brightly
as when the switch is actually on. A phantom voltage doesn't
carry enough current to actually light up that bulb, does it??
 
  #4  
Old 06-26-02, 08:12 AM
J
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You are correct. I would not normally expect a phantom voltage to be able to light a bulb, unless the bulb is very low power. However, it is possible to light some LEDs by plugging the leads into a potato, so there are some pretty low power bulbs out there.
 
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