Electrical – showing 50 volts between neutral and ground


I wired 8 recessed lights to a switch in a room. When I connected everything the first time and turned on the power, the breaker tripped. If I disconnect the ground that leads to the breaker box on this line, it doesn't trip the breaker, the lights turn on, but I get odd readings.

Using a digital multimeter and touching the black lead to the exterior of the recessed lights and the red lead to my finger, the multimeter reads 18 volts, so basically the ground is carrying voltage to the can lights. If I test the ground and the neutral mid-line (at a junction box between two of the lights), I am getting 50 volts. Neutral to hot reads 120 volts, and hot to ground reads 66 volts at the same junction box. Any thoughts?

Best Answer

I just had a similar problem. Is the voltage in your outlets fluctuating? Mine was and the problem was out at the pole. A tree branch pushed the neutral wire at the pole against the ground wire. I kept getting around the same voltage in my ground wire.