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Old 11-29-2011, 06:27 PM   #1
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What’s the Problem ???


I have a single pole 15 amp light switch for my front porch light; it is wired as a middle-of-the-run switch. The switch doesn’t always work.
Sometimes I can bang on the wall with the switch on, and it will activate the light.

I tested with a voltage tester.

A book I read said that touching one tester to the metal box and one to the black hot wire should light the voltage tester, it does not. If I touch one tester to the white and one tester to the black it does light the voltage tester.

I even attempted with a new switch with no differences.

What’s wrong with this wiring?


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Old 11-29-2011, 06:36 PM   #2
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Probably a loose or bad connection in the light fixture if replacing the wall switch did not correct the problem.



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Old 11-29-2011, 07:18 PM   #3
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Thanks...but...why doesn't the voltage tester light up when I touch one end to the hot black wire and the other to the metal switch box?
Doesn't that speak to an issue with proper grounding?
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Old 11-29-2011, 07:43 PM   #4
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it shows there is no ground in the box. not uncommon in older homes. if you are getting proper voltage between black and neutral you probably have a bad connection/splice in light fixture. flip breaker off and check for loose wires in fixture
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Old 11-29-2011, 08:20 PM   #5
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Thanks Guys!!

Yeah...appears to be something in the line to the light fixture.
Tore it down...and it has the old knob and tube wiring behind the fixture!!

Though the switch to it is wired with standard wiring??

Lord knows where in the wall / ceiling it reverts back to the knob and tube!

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Old 11-29-2011, 08:53 PM   #6
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Good ole fire starter. I would try and get as much replaced with romex, starting this weekend if you can. Have the walls been insulated, does the attic still have K&T, with insulation over it?


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