Open Neutral ??

Did an H.I. on a condo today and on two outlets that both worked off of different switches, the outlets tested as having an open neutral with their corresonding switches in the off position. When in the on position, it tested okay. Haven’t had this occur before. Can anyone offer an explanation as to why this occurred? Thanks!

The switch improperly switches the Neutral (grounded) rather than the Hot (ungrounded) leg.

Thanks for the info! Very helpful and much appreciated!

Installing the switch in the wrong side of the line is a common mistake with new electrical workers. I don’t know if the use of contact testers is considered in scope in your industry But even a non contact tester should show voltage present at both terminals of the switch when the switch is in the on position. If the only time you detect voltage is when the switch is open then the switch is installed in the wrong side of the line.

Sad to say that in most all cases with the HI. they are limited to visual inspection and can’t technically remove the cover on the switches to get to the terminals. With that said many will argue that opening a panel enclosure is beyond their scope. however, the SOP used by HI’s stipulates a visual inspection. When it comes to the panel they are too look inside and not insert anything into the panel and do a visual inspection.

Take a few minutes Tom and check out their SOP requirements on the left side of the screen. You will be surprised how they are limited in their allowances but are expected to see everything…sad to say they are very restricted.