Strange behavior of Lutron dimmer switch

I have installed two Lutron Aridani dimmer switches. These are the ones that look like ordinary switches but have a tiny lever beside the switch that does the dimming. One is controlling an existing ceiling fixture, and it works as expected. The ceiling light goes on and off with the toggle and dims with the lever.
Now, here is the strange part. The other dimmer switch is for control of a new wall mounted light fixture which is not yet installed. Just to check that I had my wiring right I turned the second dimmer switch on and applied a test light between the black and white wires in the wall light J-box. As expected, the test light came on. However, when I turn the dimmer switch off I STILL get a positive test with my test light at the J-box! If I disconnect the black wires from the dimmer switch I don't get a positive test, confirming that my wiring is correct.
So, my question is, why does this switch "conduct" when it's off?
By the way, the test light is one of the old-fashioned, cheap neon devices. However, I also used a DVM to confirm the same behavior. I get between 56 and 120 volts AC as the dimmer lever is moved over its range, REGARDLESS OF THE SWITCH POSITION!
Do I have a bad switch here, or what?
Ed
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Gary,
I was wondering if it was something like that. However, my DVM also shows 120 VAC when the switch is off. I was aware that the dimming function only worked with resistive loads, but I thought the switch itself would interrupt the circuit. That is, OFF should be OFF.
So, you are saying that this thing turns off a resistive load, but will still pass current if it's something else?
Ed
"> What is your test light? Triac dimmers mean nothing to neon bulbs. Try

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Use a real light, not a test light. It should work fine. Using a low resistance load will give all kinds of odd readings, including all those you noted.
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Joseph E. Meehan

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Sorry That should be "_high_ resistance load"
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Joseph E. Meehan

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As indeed it does! Thanks.
Ed

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jagerEd wrote:

Use a 100/60 watt bulb, say, as a test light. Probably work fine? Anything with electronics in it may give a reading on a meter or neon cos a small amount of electricity 'sort of' leaks through the circuitry. An old fashioned on/off switch will work fine becaus it is just that. On OR off! BTW check to see if the dimmers (which usually contain electronic components) can cause radio/TV/audio system interference or noise. Some can do so. Especially if entertainment equipment is on the same or nearby circuits to those equpped with certain types of dimmers! Just an idea.
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As indeed it does! Thanks.
Ed

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