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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I put a new sub-panel in the basement. GE Power Mark Gold 125 amp 6-12 panel. TGL-2 Ground Kit.

New cable. (6/3 NM-B)

New GE breakers.

All run into an old 100 amp main panel using a 60 amp EATON BR breaker (Yes, it is the correct one, verified on the panel as an approved breaker to use. Plus it matches the one I used when I ran the sub-panel for the Hot-Tub)

All the wires go into the correct slot/hole. Ground to ground, neutral to hot.

I have power to both Red and Black. I have breakers plugged into the black. Everything works fine.

When I plug a breaker into the Red, there is no problem. When I run a wire into the breaker. No problem. I still have power running into the "Red" side.

When I turn the breaker on is when the fun starts. Or, rather doesn't. All power stops to the "Red" side.

Nothing. All the way back to the breaker on the main panel.

Any thoughts?
 

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Recheck your wiring. Obviously something is wrong. When you said "neutral to hot" you lost me there. Explain.

How are you measuring voltage, multi-meter or non-contact device?
 

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Exercise that 60 amp breaker off and on several times. If it starts working, don't trust it, get a replacement. I suspect it's defective and the voltage you were measuring was only because you were using a high impedance digital meter and not an analog one.

Digital meter can be misleading. The old electrician's standard wiggys didn't have that problem. A cheapo multimeter is better for most DIY work.

Wiggy example
 

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High resistance connection on the red line. As soon as you apply a load the connection fails and voltage drops.
Could be breaker to panel, breaker internal connection, wire to breaker, wire to sub panel. breaker to sub panel, internal breaker in sub panel.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
High resistance connection on the red line. As soon as you apply a load the connection fails and voltage drops.
Could be breaker to panel, breaker internal connection, wire to breaker, wire to sub panel. breaker to sub panel, internal breaker in sub panel.
Believe it or not, that actually makes sense.

How to narrow it down though.

Aye, there's the rub.
 

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You already narrowed it down! You said the voltage disappeared all the way back to the branch breaker in the Main panel it was fed from. If everything else works in that Main panel, you have narrowed it down to that breaker. Check to verify the wires are screwed down tight. If no joy, the breaker is bad or you don't have it plugged in all the way.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Finally got time to take everyone's advice and take a look at both panels and figure out what was going on with things.

It seems like my Cutler-Hammer BR main panel has some sizing issue with the two slots opposite the main disconnect/breaker. If you plug in a double pole breaker, like I did for my sub-panel, it makes contact with one lug, and barely makes contact with the other.

So, when you test it with a non-contact voltage tester, it looks live. But, when you actually put voltage through it, none makes the jump. Just like @joed surmised.

To correct it, I rearranged things in the panel and now I have full contact/voltage to the breaker, sub-panel, breaker.

Thanks all!!
 
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So, when you test it with a non-contact voltage tester, it looks live.
A non-contact voltage “tester” isn’t really a test. It’s a safety check. When it alarms and you don’t expect it to, it’s time for a better instrument. Pull out the multimeter.

Non-contact testers don’t not work well on abnormal/non-working circuits. They will false alarm easily under those conditions.

Analog Multimeters are a low impedance meter. They won’t confuse you with phantom voltage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
@Oso954,

you are correct sir!

I was just checking to see if current was present. I did have my $5 HFT multimeter ready if there was nothing detected.

There is a breaker barely hanging on that I will be moving to the sub-panel later on today I just need to figure out which cable it is coming out of the ceiling/floor.

And I still need to decipher the wiring diagram from the home builder/manufacturer. And correct all the butchery that the PO did to the house. And finish all of my corrections to his half-assed work.

Buried connections. Connections with no boxes. Connections with no wire-nuts. A GFCI with LINE and LOAD both wired into the LINE side of the GFCI. You name it - the PO did it.

I should start a build/remodel thread of just the electrical fixes. .....
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I moved the wire that was attached to the errant/loose breaker on the main panel to the sub-panel. (Almost directly below the main panel.)

Instead of pulling the cable, I clipped off the end of the hot and neutral and curled them back on themselves. On the other side of the line (so to speak). I left a 2' section of cable, that was clean cut. My reasoning for doing this is stems from the existing main panel being in a finished wall and it is damn near impossible to run new cable to it.

I was not planning on putting wire nut's on the end of the wires in the panel. Just wrap them in electrical tape. And a P-Touch label.

Anything else I should do with it?
 
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