I was recently doing some home improvement and had to temporarily remove a ceiling fan. When I removed the ceiling fan, the previous installer had a braided “lamp wire” jumper from a the light switch feed. I thought this looked cheap and dangerous, but it was working as power. I removed the “lamp cord” and replaced it with 14/2 copper wire. I didn’t know exactly which was “hot” & “neutral, but I was getting 93 volts across both. I thought the wall switch might be bad, so I replaced it with a Leviton “single throw” rocker switch. (Simple pass thru) After installing the new switch, I was getting 99 volts (hot to neutral. Never checked hot to ground…? I reconnected the ceiling fan to test it and the fan will not work now! I used a circuit tester and the whole fan, housing, wiring & light fixture were emitting voltage!! Don’t know how much, but it wasn’t enough to notice by touch.
Anybody have a clue or ideas to what is going on with this circuit? Thanks in advance!!

  • 99 volts would indicate bad (loose) connection somewhere. Probably where you replace it
    – Ruskes
    Aug 5 at 0:17
  • You newer told us what are you measuring at the switch box ? or did you ? Is your multimeter broken ? does it show 120 Volt in other places. ?
    – Ruskes
    Aug 5 at 0:22
  • 2
    Sounds like phantom voltage coming off a DVM, which is too sensitive for the job and sees things that aren't there. Why are you doing this work with the breaker on? You have way too much faith in the work of the last guy. Aug 5 at 0:41
  • @Harper-ReinstateMonica if it is Phantom voltage, can one touch the wire, or short it to the ground
    – Ruskes
    Aug 5 at 4:08
  • 1
    @Ruskes wow, you have stated 3 ideas all of which will go fantastically badly if you're wrong about it being phantom voltage. Aug 5 at 8:04


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