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Old 11-28-2009, 11:23 AM   #1
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38 volt on a plug


I bought a bank repo house which had been rewired before I bought it. I found a plug controled by a wall light switch. (two plug outlet split) with the switch off I get 38 volts from the plug, with the switch on I get 120 volts ? any ideas ?

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Old 11-28-2009, 11:29 AM   #2
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38 volt on a plug


I will bet that you are using a digital meter. You are reading phantom voltage. It is not a problem, the meters are too sensitive and do not place enough load on the circuit. A solenoid type meter would not show this voltage.

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Old 11-28-2009, 11:30 AM   #3
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38 volt on a plug


There is no problem. The plug is switching on/off. You are using a digital meter and the reading is called phantom voltage. Plug a lamp in and measure again with the lamp switch turned on.
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Old 11-28-2009, 11:31 AM   #4
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38 volt on a plug


yes your right im using a dig. meter thanks.
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Old 11-28-2009, 12:03 PM   #5
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38 volt on a plug


Almost all analog/dig/neon/non-contact testers will show phantom voltages. The meters' high input impedance is the problem when using these to test house wiring. That's why they invented Wiggys and Low-Z meters.

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Old 11-28-2009, 05:38 PM   #6
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38 volt on a plug


Test it out with an incad bulb to see if it lights up. Probably wont, does sound like phantom voltage, but always good to double check anyway.

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