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epicurux 06-26-2007 08:14 PM

Help with voltage troubleshooting
One of the electrical outlets in my bedroom suddenly failed. I've lived in the hosue for 7+ years and I replaced the receptable at the outlet about a year ago. Never had any problem until yesterday. Took a voltage measurement at the line and got 27V instead of the 120V that all the other outlets have on the same breaker. One potential issue I observed was the neutral wire has a spliced extension. The splice was covered by tape so I removed the tape and took a voltage there too but still got the same 27V. Would appreciate any pointers on troubleshooting this. Thanks.

JohnJ0906 06-27-2007 04:10 PM

27 volts where?
Are you measuring black - to - white? Black - to - ground?
Measure both, and let us know what your measurements are.

Check white to ground too, just in case.

epicurux 06-27-2007 06:50 PM

Thanks for the reply.
I got 27V from hot to neutral and hot to ground.
I haven't tried neutral to ground, yet.
A friend suggested that I should bring a good hot line from another outlet via an extension cord to verify the neutral is good.
Will give 'em a try tonight.

J. V. 07-01-2007 02:17 PM

So you had this recept working for 7 years and then AFTER you installed the second one it failed too?

Double check the connections on the new recep and any other wires in this box. Make sure that the little jumper that connects the two hot and two neutral on the recep has not been removed. This jumper is to seperate the the two hot screws and the two neutral screws. Both jumpers need to be intact unless you are switching this recept.

Measure voltage from black (hot) to white (neutral). If 120 is not present, then check the black to the green (ground). If you get 120 your neutral is open somewhere. If you still have no voltage find the recep ahead of the bad one. Look for an open connection in this box.

You may have to open several receptacle boxes until you find the culprit.

epicurux 07-02-2007 01:40 AM

Thanks for the reply. The outlet had worked flawlessly for a year after I replaced the receptacle.

As I have stated in my original post. I get 27V (not 0 or 120) from the line and (hot to neutral) that just baffles me. And ALL other outlets on the same circuit are working.

I took voltage from neutral to ground and got nothing. Very puzzling ...

HouseHelper 07-02-2007 07:51 AM

The 27 V you are reading is a "phantom" voltage and should go away if you place a load between the meter and the hot. Check any splices you have in that box and all connections at the closest working receptacle on that same circuit. If you have backstab connections, the problem is most likely there. Under normal circumstances, you should read 0V between neutral and ground.

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