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Hey folks,

I was on this website a long time ago... couldn't remember my ID or email attached to it though, so here's a fresh question from me.

I installed a chandelier in a kitchen, 100 year old house. I couldn't figure out why there was still voltage on the switch leg coming up even after both switches were off, so here's the facts... I need help understanding why this happened:

1) Dead-end 3-way switch set-up, i.e. the hot sent over to the other switch via Romex 3-wire
2) Both traveler wires from the Romex operating fine, they did their job when the switches were hooked up
(Imagine the light isn't connected yet, since these next 2 voltage readings were taken before the chandelier was wired in.)
3) When the light comes on, there are 120 volts between the "switch leg" and "neutral", which I ultimately connected the chandelier to
4) When the light is off, there are 55 volts, regardless of dimmer.
5) I read the voltage of the box to the "neutral" in a nearby outlet and found 25 volts.

Where is this voltage coming from? I told the homeowner that basically there is a problem with the bonding at the service or something else where the neutral is tied into the ground. I continued to tell him I've been in houses where people got poked because there was about 60 volts touching the yoke of the switch and breaker's not tripping. Since I didn't wire the house, I just noted on the invoice there's a "possibility" of voltage at the dimmer when it's deenergized. That's basically why I spent a ton of time trying to make sure this ancient wiring wasn't going to poke or bite anyone in the house.

Everything worked great when I left. I'm just baffled about the voltage present at the chandelier after the switch/dimmer breaks the circuit. Is it my Fluke T5-600?
I'm curious - you said you had 3 wire romex connecting the two 3-ways. Have you considered the possibility of induced voltage? I know this caught me a couple of times early on in the trade - I would measure about 30 (induced) volts on the not-in-use traveller of a 3-wire in a 3-way configuration (in new housing, properly wired). 55 volts is a higher number than I remember ever seeing, but maybe a possibility, or at least part of the puzzle?
 
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