Old ceiling light connected between two red wires. Why? I'm trying to wire new fan/light


Three way light switches can be wired several ways, and yes, there is often red wires involved in the traveler or perhaps a 14/3 split power feed going to another circuit. So my advise, without back tracing and figuring out exactly where each wire goes and is used for, is to use the exact same two red wires. If possible, use a voltage meter or proximity voltage checker to see which one is actually the positive hot lead and connect that to your black and maybe blue wires from the fan/light. Then of course, the other would connect to the white wire from the fixture. You should mark the hot side with some black electrical tape and/or white tape on the wire that is actually the return or virtual neutral. The idea is that you don't want to connect the switched hot feed to the neutral side of the new fan/light. It wants to go to the hot fan feed and center hot bulb feed. Also, do not use an old incandescent dimmer to run the...

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Old UK wiring was as shown below

A comes from the fuse-box/consumer-unit (possibly via other junction-boxes/roses for other ceiling lights). B goes to the next ceiling light. C goes to the light switch for this lamp.

However most electricians will not have cable type C with two red wires and will have used regular cable with a black and a red wire and will put red tape around the end of the black wire to indicate it is "switched live" and not neutral (as it's black colour would suggest).

From what I've read, sometimes they would connect C's black wire to position 3 (the other red live wires) and then C's red wire would be the switched-live return from the switch. Connecting the black to the reds would make it obvious to an electrician and that might be why no wire had red-tape on it's end.

If someone has removed the red tape, you can:

turn off the lighting circuit at the fuse-box/consumer-unit, check there's no voltage present with a...
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Ceiling fans are often wired for two power sources, one to the light and one to the fan. There may or may not be a wall switch for either. One standard way to wire this is to use four-conductor cable, with the additional "hot" power coming on the fourth wire. If you had noted how the fan was hooked up before you dismounted it, that would have helped. But, assuming that this was done by someone who had some vague clue about house wiring...

In the US, the color convention is Black for hot, White for neutral, Green (or, sometimes, uninsulated) for safety ground, and Red for "secondary hot", which may be used for different purposes in different situations. For the ceiling fan, they may have used black to power the light and red to power the fan, or the other way around.

So: In your case, where there's only one switch and it used to control the lights, I suspect that it's in the red circuit rather than the black circuit. You could check that by turning the power off again,...

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I have an existing ceiling fan rough in that is wired with 3 conductor wire to two switches, allowing the light and fan to be controlled independently.

The fan that I installed however uses a wireless controller for the fan and light control, and therefore only uses a single hot wire(one switch), the other conductor for the unused switch is just capped in the ceiling fan box.

I would like to add a separate ceiling light fixture in this room. It has occurred to me that I have a switch that is not being used because the fan can only be controlled by a single switch.

Can I simply tap into the existing neutral, and unused hot in the ceiling fan to run to my new fixture? This would save me from having to add a new switch.

In other words, I would run 14/2 from the ceiling fan fixture to the new light location. I would tie the new hot to the unused hot in the ceiling fan fixture, tie neutral to neutral, and ground to ground.

This seems to be pretty...

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A 'circuit is normally one black, (hot), and one white (neutral, or 'return'.).
That's how two wire cable is color coded.
When you bring power down to a switch, and switch controlled power back
up that white is NOT a Neutral.
In your case, power came into the switch, so the white neutral was carried through
to the fixture and the black carried switch controlled power up to the fixture.
If you didn't know this when you first looked at that switch-box, you've
got no business messing about with line current.
Put those two neutrals back the way they were, and your new switch may even require
a 'pigtail' connection to them as well as that black 'power in' and the other black 'fixture power' out.

Source(s): Retired Electrical Consultant...

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Hey there Ervinsean, I’m Blake from the California Home Depot. I’m sorry to hear about your wiring issues, but we should be able to clear things up in a jiffy. First things first, let me hook you up with an important safety note.

SAFETY NOTE: Before you work on wiring devices, turn off the circuit breaker(s) or remove fuses associated with all circuits being worked with. Always check wires with avoltage detectorbefore touching them. Your voltage detector should be tested on a live circuit first to confirm that it is functional before use. Mark the circuit breaker panel or fuse box panel as “BEING SERVICED DO NOT TAMPER”. If you feel that you lack the knowledge or skill to complete this project please call an electrician. Please be sure you have read and understand the installation instructions for your devices.

Let’s first cover the connection between the receiver and the fan. The smaller “Fan out” should be connected to the black wire that comes out of your...

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How to Connect the Red Wire to a Ceiling Fan

Electrical Question: Where do I connect the red wire of the ceiling fan? Last year I had my house prewired for a fan in my bedroom, all the wall switches are installed. Where do I connect the red wire from the ceiling (red,white,green,black) with the black, blue and white wires from the fan?

This electrical question came from: Samuel, a Handyman from Sacramento, California.

Dave’s Reply:
Thanks for your electrical question Samuel.

Connecting the Red Wire to the Ceiling Fan

Application: Ceiling Fan Electrical Wiring.
Skill Level: Intermediate to Advanced, Best performed by a Licensed Electrical Contractor.
Tools Required: Basic Electricians Pouch Hand Tools, a non-aluminum ladder and Voltage Tester.
Estimated Time: Depends on personal level experience, ability to work with tools and access to the switched outlet wiring and the proposed location for the ceiling fan.

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Answer for Canada, USA and countries running a 60 Hz supply service.

On most ceiling fan installations a three wire feed is used. A "hot" wire and the neutral feeder are brought to a two gang switch box from the distribution panel. One switch will control the fan and the other switch will control the light if there is one. On this type of installation the "hot" wire is connected to the top of both switches. The incoming neutral and the white from the three wire cable connect together in the switch box. From the bottom of the switch that controls the fan connect the black wire. From the bottom of the switch that controls the light connect the red wire. From the switch box the three wire feeder connects to the fixture box. In the fixture box the black wire of the three wire connects to the fan's black wire. The red wire of the three wire connects to the fan's blue wire to control the light. The neutral connects to the fan's white wire. The green wire from the fan connects...

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2 way switching means having two or more switches in different locations to control one lamp. They are wired so that operation of either switch will control the light. This arrangement is often found in stairways, with one switch upstairs and one switch downstairs or in long hallways with a switch at either end.

Here we have a two way switching system that utilises two single gang two-way switches and a three wire control, shown in the old cable colours. It is possible to achieve a similar result using a two wire control which, although it saves on cable, is not recommended. This is the preferred approach.

Here we a have a schematic (Fig 1) which makes it easy to visualise how this circuit works. In this state the lamp is off, changing the position of either switch will switch the live to the lamp turning it on. If you now change the position of the other switch the circuit is broken once again.

Fig 1: Two way switching schematic wiring diagram (3 wire...

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Edit Article

Three Parts:Removing Old SwitchesInstalling a Double SwitchTroubleshootingCommunity Q&A

A double-switch allows you to operate two lights or appliances from the same location. Double switches, sometimes called "double pole," allow you to separately control the power being sent to multiple places from the same switch. For example, you might want to turn on a bathroom light separately from the ceiling fan. To wire a double switch, you'll need to cut the power, remove the old switch, then feed and connect the wires into the double switch fixture. Though it is not difficult to wire a double switch, careful attention to safety is crucial to prevent injury.

Note: This article only describes installing the switch itself, not rewiring two conjoined feeds that need to be separated. If you are trying to separate two lights that use the same wiring, as opposed to two already separate sources, you will likely need a trained...

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The power (from the breaker) is likely at the light fixture. When you hook black to black and white to white, the light is powered directly from the breaker. In this configuration, when you flip the switch on you create a short through the switch.

What you need to do is hook it up like this.

Notice the white wire that runs between the switch and the light has a black stripe on it (in above image), that lets anybody that works on this light in the future know that the wire is switched. You can mark the wire using a bit of electrical tape, or a marker.

Figuring out which wires come from the breaker, and which go to the switch will require some tools. First Turn off the breaker, and verify the power is off using a non-contact voltage tester. Now pick one set of wires to work with first (one black and one white from the same cable). Turn the switch to the on position, and use a multimeter to check continuity between the two wires. If the wires are...

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Thanks for the reply.

Coming out of the ceiling is two white cables. One white cable has a red, a black and green wire coming out of it. The other white cable has a red and white wire coming out of it. The two red wires coming from each cable are twisted together.

When I removed the original light fitting, there were four holes, with five wires coming out. That is the:

1 hole with the white wire coming out
1 hole with two red wires coming out
1 hole with one black wire coming out
1 hole with the earth coming out

A very basic drawing of my wiring is below:

My new light fitting (a basic cheapo oyster fitting) has:
1 hole that connects to a brown wire
1 hole that connects to a blue wire
1 hole that connects to a earth wire

Normally I would connect the following:

Brown wire to red wires
Blue wire to red wire
Earth wire to earth wire

Now, I don't know what to with the white wire....

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If you're in the US, NEC likely applies. Article 402 covers fixture wires, and explains what types and sizes are allowed.

Table 402.3 lists the types of wires allowed to be used as fixture wires. If you're going to rewire the fixture, you'll have to use a type of wire listed in this table.


Table 402.5 lists the allowable ampacity for different sizes of wire. You'll want to use a wire that's sized properly for the load you'll be serving. In most cases, the maximum bulb size you'll have to account for is 100 Watt. Which means you'll likely only be looking at about 833 mA (100 Watts/120 Volts), so you can probably get away with 18 AWG wire.

402.6 says that fixture wires cannot be smaller than 18 AWG, so you'll have to use at least that size wire.

402.12 points to 240.5 for...

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The easiest wiring of a light switch you can do is with a single-pole standard light switch. View the following wiring diagram instructions on the wiring of a switch and replace that switch today! This article explains the two most common methods for wiring a basic light switch.

There are two methods for wiring a basic on/off (single-pole standard duty) switch to a light or a set of lights.

One method is to bring the power supply in to the light fixture outlet box, and then use what is called a “switch-leg drop” to the switch box, and the other way is to bring power in to the switch box, and then run the “switched” cable up to the light or lights. The second method is by far the best way, especially if you are using the switch to control more than one light outlet.

Method #1 (The switch-leg drop)

Step #1

Run your 2-wire power feed cable to the outlet box for the light fixture. Then run a 2-wire cable to the outlet box for the...

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Has anyone had any successful warranty claims for the Grange DC, and who did you initially buy them through, and what was the involved with the warranty claim?
I contacted Mercator regarding the common ticking sound as I was considering buying some, but they claimed to know nothing about it.

I'm just after fans for bedrooms, with lights (preferably dimmable).
Remote doesn't interest me – prefer not to have it if it beeps & cant be turned off (seems most have them now though)

A bloke on product review claims to have fixed his Grange DC for anyone that's interested:

"The ticking/clicking in my unit was caused by loose lamellae (plates) forming the pole pieces/rotor of the DC motor. I fixed it by stripping the unit down and smearing a high-strength epoxy onto the ends of the poles, forcing it into the gaps. After re-assembling the unit it was dead quiet (apart from the blade noise at higher speeds). I regard this as a manufacturing fault, but I'm...

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Fix a Bathroom Light Fixture

Electrical Question:How can I fix a bathroom light and fan that stopped working?

Bathroom Light Fixture Problem #1

I have a 1975 townhouse, and as a single mom I find myself having to learn and do a lot of things by myself. My daughter’s bathroom has both a fan and light switch (single-pole wall switch). The fan was not working so I thought I would replace the switch for the fan. I had forgot to turn off the power at the electrical panel and there was just a little spark–I know, Be Careful. Well now the fan works, but the light does not. The two slot receptacle (15 amps, 120 volts) works, but it also affected the light in my bathroom and the GFCI receptacle. I have aluminum wiring and if there is a overload it trips, but I know it is not the fuse because everything else is working. I have been researching I think it has to do with the GFCI am I on the right track?

Background: Ingrid, a Homeowner from Virginia Beach,...

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Welcome. If you're new here, be sure to subscribe to Ghost Hunting Secrets for free ghost hunting tips, videos, haunted locations, and other goodies. Thanks for visiting!

Jamie wants to know whether strange electrical activity could be a sign of paranormal activity. She writes:

Hi Michelle! I have a spirit here in our apartment. I have heard him speak before; I have felt his presence, and even caught an EVP of him. The past couple days, I noticed something strange: the nightlight in our guest bathroom turned a VERY bright white and then burned out….and last night, the lights on our ficus tree did the same thing (the lights got so bright that it woke me up…was like a sunlight)..and then they burned out, too.

Is this a sign of paranormal activity? I never heard of anything like this, with the exception of lights flickering and going off and on..all of which we have had in the past month as well. Thanks so much.

- Jamie from Wisconsin

Hi Jamie....

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How do you fix headphones with sound in only one ear? The most common fault on a pair of audio headphones is sound only coming from one ear or side. If you have an expensive pair of earphones, replacing them by buying new ones is not always the best option. For headphones or earbuds that cost $50 dollars and above, most people will choose to fix it themselves. For many high end headphones, there is probably a warranty that may still be covering them from defects. Before you attempt to cut any wires or disassemble the headphones, contact the manufacturer first… there are links to many headphone companies at the bottom of this page.

If you know what Headphone Replacement Parts you need,
here is where to get them at a GREAT PRICE and most have FREE shipping.

There can be many reasons that a pair of headphones only play audio out of one ear. The most common reason for sound to only come out of one side is the wires near the audio jack have gotten bent back...

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