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Old 10-12-2012, 08:15 AM   #1
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Adding a wall switch but found a random "hot" blue wire


Hello everyone! I've been a long time stalker but have just now officially joined to hopefully get some more great advice on a peculiar predicament I'm in.

Here's the situation: I am wanting to add a new security light over my garage doors and want to add a light switch to it. There is a mini-breaker box (sub-panel) inside the garage that has 2 20 amp breakers in it and immediately next to it is an outlet. I was hoping to tie into this outlet to wire the switch and then light but when I opened the cover, I found 2 sets of cables (each had a black, white and ground) and a random blue wire. The outlet was wired as such: 2 blacks are wrapped onto the top screw for the hot side, the blue wire was on the bottom screw on the hot side, and then the two whites were on the other side. When I opened the face of the breaker box to see where the heck the blue wire was coming from, it is wired onto the top of one of the breakers. The new wire I've run so far is 12 gauge by the way.

Question: Can I power the new light from this outlet, can I install the light switch also and finally, how do I wire it?

Thank you all for your great help and advice!
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Adding a wall switch but found a random "hot" blue wire-2012-10-11_14-14-55_985.jpg   Adding a wall switch but found a random "hot" blue wire-2012-10-11_14-15-33_191.jpg   Adding a wall switch but found a random "hot" blue wire-2012-10-11_14-16-11_111.jpg   Adding a wall switch but found a random "hot" blue wire-2012-10-11_14-16-26_847.jpg   Adding a wall switch but found a random "hot" blue wire-2012-10-11_18-28-23_787.jpg  


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Old 10-12-2012, 09:23 AM   #2
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Adding a wall switch but found a random "hot" blue wire


As someone posted in the other forum stated you should really straighten that mess out before making any changes.

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Old 10-12-2012, 10:04 AM   #3
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Adding a wall switch but found a random "hot" blue wire


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Originally Posted by Jim Port View Post
As someone posted in the other forum stated you should really straighten that mess out before making any changes.
Yeah that's on the list of things to do but I wanted to install the security light now as I'll have to hire an electrician to do the sub-panel rewire. The security light is the priority unless of course there's a safety hazard.
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Old 10-12-2012, 03:03 PM   #4
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Adding a wall switch but found a random "hot" blue wire


The blue is supplying the power while the doubled up screw blacks are a splice from that feeding something thru the switchbox and to the left.

I agree, clean it up
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Old 10-12-2012, 04:31 PM   #5
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Adding a wall switch but found a random "hot" blue wire


Hire the electrician to clean it up.
While he is there, have him add the switch and security light.
Then you will know that it is All Correct..
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Old 10-12-2012, 05:36 PM   #6
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Adding a wall switch but found a random "hot" blue wire


Quote:
Originally Posted by crzycicada View Post
how do I wire it?

As long as the blue wire is your always hot conductor you can do this.

Ground wires not shown for ease of drawing.
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Last edited by hammerlane; 10-12-2012 at 05:39 PM.
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Old 10-13-2012, 03:29 PM   #7
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Adding a wall switch but found a random "hot" blue wire


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Originally Posted by hammerlane View Post
As long as the blue wire is your always hot conductor you can do this.

Ground wires not shown for ease of drawing.
You are awesome! This config worked though I didn't add the switch as I'll wait for the electrician to re-wire everything and make it more stream line. At least now everything is working great and we have a security light for when we come home at night! Thank you so very much!!
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Old 10-13-2012, 05:03 PM   #8
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Adding a wall switch but found a random "hot" blue wire


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Originally Posted by crzycicada View Post
This config worked though I didn't add the switch as I'll wait for the electrician to re-wire everything and make it more stream line.
Buy yourself a switch and a 4" combination duplex/switch raised cover for the 4" square junction box and do the install yourself. Kind of like below but instead of the GFCI the cover is made fr a duplex.
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Last edited by hammerlane; 10-13-2012 at 05:17 PM.
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Old 10-13-2012, 05:17 PM   #9
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Adding a wall switch but found a random "hot" blue wire


like this
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