Open Neutral, Hot & Grd Reveresed? - Electrical - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum
Advertisement


Go Back   DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum > Home Improvement > Electrical

CLICK HERE AND JOIN OUR COMMUNITY TODAY...IT'S FREE!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 01-23-2011, 09:24 AM   #1
Newbie
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 3
Rewards Points: 10
Default

Open neutral, hot & grd reveresed?


Hello all, just joined.

I was wondering if you all could lend me hand with a circuit issue I'm having. This weekend I was helping my girlfriend out with her new house when we discovered an issue with a circuit in the living room. When the home inspector was there and when she was moving in apparently everything worked fine. But now more than half the circuit doesn't work.

On the circuit is the hallway light, porch light, 2 outlets and 3 recessed lights, a dimmer switch and 2 other switches (hall and porch). Currently 1 of the outlets works and nothing else.

I bought a circuit tester and plugged it in where I could. The outlet that's working shows "correct" The other outlet shows "open neutral" when the switches are off (any of the switches). However, if I throw the switch, it will read "Hot/Grd crossed"

Ive opened everything up and checked for loose connections. Nothing seems to have helped. I'm skeptical about playing with any of the wires as "it used to work" The outlet, appears to be wired correctly, black on brass, white on silver, ground on green. It is not backstabbed.

The dimmer switch has the black, ground, and a red incoming that's capped off.
The outlet has white, black, ground.


Any ideas to help me out?

Thanks

Advertisement

th3chainrule is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2011, 10:13 AM   #2
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 3,585
Rewards Points: 2,158
Default

Open neutral, hot & grd reveresed?


The receptacle that works could be on another circuit. Have you checked and reset the breakers? You mention porch. Is the porch outside? If it is, most likely its on a GFCI receptacle. It does sound strange to have the other stuff on a GFCI, but I have seen some crazy wiring before. The porch may just have its own GFCI receptacle.
If the breaker is not tripped and there is no GFCI receptacle, then I would trust the tester. The open neutral can be anywhere from the breaker to the first dead receptacle. Check the easy stuff first. Thats usually where the problem is.
Work your way from the panel to the problem.

Advertisement

J. V. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2011, 10:17 AM   #3
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Nashua, NH, USA
Posts: 7,290
Rewards Points: 2,682
Default

Open neutral, hot & grd reveresed?


Use a voltmeter and measure between hot and neutral, between neutral and ground, and between hot and ground. You do n't need to disconnect anything yet.

Still, these measurements still need to be taken with a grain of salt (or lots of the measurements in numerous places evaluated by someone with lots of electrical experience).

More reliable measurements in a lesser quantity and that don[t need a grain of salt can be done by getting a long bare #14 or so gauge wire, connecting one end to ground at your panel, and measuring voltage from hot or neutral of a receptacle or light fixture to this bare wire.

Make measurements both with switches on and switches off. Pay attention to any situation where you get voltage between neutral and the bare wire.

A GFCI that protects outside receptacles can sometimes be in a bathroom whose lights do not go out when the GFCI trips.
__________________
(One morning on WRKO Radio) The tub's not clean! Let's remodel the bathroom.
(One afternoon on WRKO Radio) It's time for an oil change. I'm going to trade in the car for next year's model.

Last edited by AllanJ; 01-23-2011 at 10:22 AM.
AllanJ is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2011, 10:20 AM   #4
Member
 
joed's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Welland, Ontario
Posts: 9,651
Rewards Points: 6,096
Blog Entries: 11
Default

Open neutral, hot & grd reveresed?


The hot/grd reverse is just a false reading of an open neutral. Did you open the working receptacle? The problem could be in there.
__________________
Do not PM with questions that can be asked in a forum. I will not respond.
joed is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2011, 10:38 AM   #5
Newbie
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 3
Rewards Points: 10
Default

Open neutral, hot & grd reveresed?


I did check the working outlet with both the tester and I opened it up to check that the wires were secure and correct. Everything looked ok at that outlet. We have the cable box and tv plugged in there and it seems to be working fine.

Im pretty sure I still have my meter back at home. Ill start measuring voltages.


Is it possible for something to be wrong at a switch in this case?


Also it appears there is more to this circuit than I originally thought. There are 3 outlets in the kitchen that seem to be attached to this circuit as well. 2 of which are GFCI. All of the outlets, check out as "correct" when tested with the circuit tester. Does this change anything?

Last edited by th3chainrule; 01-23-2011 at 10:51 AM.
th3chainrule is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2011, 03:39 PM   #6
Member
 
joed's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Welland, Ontario
Posts: 9,651
Rewards Points: 6,096
Blog Entries: 11
Default

Open neutral, hot & grd reveresed?


It is a loose or open neutral. It could be in any junction box the cable passes through including lights, switches, receptacles and junction boxes with no devices. If you know how the cable is routed the problem is in the next box after the working receptacle. Start with the devices closest to the working box looking for the problem.
__________________
Do not PM with questions that can be asked in a forum. I will not respond.
joed is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2011, 10:38 AM   #7
Newbie
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 3
Rewards Points: 10
Default

Open neutral, hot & grd reveresed?


I just discovered one of the gfci outlets in the upstairs bathroom is not resetting. Could this affect the circuits downstairs? Im pretty sure they are on different breakers.
th3chainrule is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2011, 01:42 PM   #8
Member
 
joed's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Welland, Ontario
Posts: 9,651
Rewards Points: 6,096
Blog Entries: 11
Default

Open neutral, hot & grd reveresed?


GFCI needs power to reset. If the GFCI is on the same circuit that could be ther reason it won't rest.

Advertisement

__________________
Do not PM with questions that can be asked in a forum. I will not respond.
joed is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Induction Cooktop, no neutral (?!) andersol Electrical 7 09-28-2010 03:47 PM
240 volt load/appliance and ground vs neutral kgize Electrical 7 04-22-2010 11:40 PM
GFCI feeing subpanel question scott2332 Electrical 45 02-28-2009 03:15 PM
Will reverse polarity trip breaker?? Duane 70 Electrical 60 12-05-2008 10:18 PM
Splice in Neutral to Panel - OK or Not? allpraisebob Electrical 4 08-12-2006 05:54 AM




Top of Page | View New Posts