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Discussion Starter #1
I was at a friend's house that needed some work done, just checking it out today. A receptacle in the hallway caught my eye and I checked the voltage...~54V

So I checked the other side of the wall where he had his sander plugged in. Still ~54V.

I'm using a new Fluke meter and my outlets at my apartment read ~120V. So the meter is working fine.

I can only guess that I wasn't getting a good solid connection with the probes inside the receptacle. I was on my way out and rushing it. I just checked hot to ground.

Any thoughts on what was happening there?
 

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Rest In Peace
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I was at a friend's house that needed some work done, just checking it out today. A receptacle in the hallway caught my eye and I checked the voltage...~54V

So I checked the other side of the wall where he had his sander plugged in. Still ~54V.

I'm using a new Fluke meter and my outlets at my apartment read ~120V. So the meter is working fine.

I can only guess that I wasn't getting a good solid connection with the probes inside the receptacle. I was on my way out and rushing it. I just checked hot to ground.

Any thoughts on what was happening there?
Are you an electrician?

Did you check voltage at the panel?

I have an ideal multi and I admit the prongs are skinny and you will get false voltage readings just trying to plug into a receptacle, unless you work the leads right.
 

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bad ground, more than likely. chk all 3 against each other, since it sounds like a grounded receptacle. betting have 120 volts or close across hot to neutral/grounded conductor. that's a pretty screwed up reading regardless.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Are you an electrician?

Did you check voltage at the panel?

I have an ideal multi and I admit the prongs are skinny and you will get false voltage readings just trying to plug into a receptacle, unless you work the leads right.
Ya, but still a new one. Been doing only for about 3 years. Just an apprentice. :)

I tried moving the leads around to no luck. 54V was as high as it went. Like I said I was in a rush to get out of there. I had other stuff to do. I just forgot to check hot - neutral was all. But I'm willing to bet that was right about where it needed to be.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
bad ground, more than likely. chk all 3 against each other, since it sounds like a grounded receptacle. betting have 120 volts or close across hot to neutral/grounded conductor. that's a pretty screwed up reading regardless.
It's an old house. Mostly knob and tube. But the original panel is now a sub panel and hardly anything is strapped down that was added. one of the outlets even had the hot/neutral reversed. :eek:
 

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Discussion Starter #10
If it's knob and tube wiring like you said, there is no ground at the receptacle to check against
It has knob and tube. But they added a new panel that feeds the old one. That brings up a good point though. I never pulled the outlet. It was a three prong but the third prong may not have even been connected. I simply assumed it went to the newer panel and not the old one. Whatever. I doesn't matter anymore. I was just curious for some thoughts on what it may have been. I'll figure it out when I get there and actually start working on it.
 

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red913 said:
It's an old house. Mostly knob and tube. But the original panel is now a sub panel and hardly anything is strapped down that was added. one of the outlets even had the hot/neutral reversed. :eek:
I bet the electrician who installed it crossed phases. He must have just metered hot to neutral because he was in a rush.
 

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I bet the electrician who installed it crossed phases. He must have just metered hot to neutral because he was in a rush.
Must have crossed "A" WITH "C" :eek:
 

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I bet the electrician who installed it crossed phases. He must have just metered hot to neutral because he was in a rush.

crossed phases ?

Do you mean crossed hot and neutral ?

Between hot and neutral , you should still get full voltage.

Even with no ground wire .

The older ungrounded system still had full voltage between hot and neutral !

This is a single phase system !

Please get this checked out by an electrician , before you hurt yourself !

You may learn something !
 

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He said that he Didn't check the neutral, only to ground. Which wasn't there. He could have gotten the same reading by holding one end of the meter in his hand.

red913, that outlet if it is a grounded type must be on a gfci. I will let you look up the code and find out where it says to do that, and there is one additional step that needs to be done with it. That is your homework assignment.
 

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Assuming it's not a bootleg ground, back in the day it was common to add grounded receps by grounding to the box. If there's "new" wiring in addition to the K&T, it could have BX cable without a bonding wire, which was notorious for becoming a high-resistance ground connection. That would give you 54v or less
 

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The way to correct a k and t outlet is 1.put install a 2 prong outlet or 2.install if the old box is big enough for a gfci. Some of those old homes have cut corner boxes or very shallow . Wall cases or 3... run a new romex with ground
 

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I was at a friend's house that needed some work done, just checking it out today. A receptacle in the hallway caught my eye and I checked the voltage...~54V

So I checked the other side of the wall where he had his sander plugged in. Still ~54V.

I'm using a new Fluke meter and my outlets at my apartment read ~120V. So the meter is working fine.

I can only guess that I wasn't getting a good solid connection with the probes inside the receptacle. I was on my way out and rushing it. I just checked hot to ground.

Any thoughts on what was happening there?
If you were not getting a good solid connection you would have "0" voltage. Admit that you were not "rushing" out and just say you need help. You'll get it here.
 
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