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Old 05-30-2011, 02:04 AM   #1
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Bathroom fan always ON


After 3 and a half years in a new house, all of sudden the master bathroom fan is always ON. I replaced the 3 way switch but that didn't fix it.
I'm starting to suspect the fan or electronics (if there are any).
Is there something else (wiring for example) I should check out before buying another bathroom fan?
I measured the resistance going to the fan and found it to be short. I'm guessing this a transformer to step down the voltage to the fan or the fan motor windings itself.
I'm trying to find schematics to a bathroom fan, but not having much luck.

Any info or advice would be much appreciated.

Thanks,
S

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Old 05-30-2011, 02:12 AM   #2
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Bathroom fan always ON


more info. what kind of fan, you said something about 3 ways. I bet fan is line voltage, which suggests bad wiring, connections, switches.

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Old 05-30-2011, 02:28 AM   #3
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Bathroom fan always ON


There is 3 wires going to the switch. The black wire with voltage is connected to the common screw.
When the switch is OFF, the black and white wires are shorted on the switch.
When the switch is ON, the black and red wires are shorted on the switch.

In either position of the switch, the fan is always ON.

I have not looked at the fan yet.

Last edited by spaps; 05-30-2011 at 02:32 AM.
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Old 05-30-2011, 03:05 AM   #4
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Bathroom fan always ON


Quote:
Originally Posted by spaps View Post
There is 3 wires going to the switch. The black wire with voltage is connected to the common screw.
When the switch is OFF, the black and white wires are shorted on the switch.
When the switch is ON, the black and red wires are shorted on the switch.

In either position of the switch, the fan is always ON.

I have not looked at the fan yet.
If this is a 3-way, there'll be another switch (operates the fan in two locations). Did you check that switch? Do so, and post back.

From your resistance tests (hope all power was off first), it indicates that the switch is working. BTW: there's no ON/OFF on a 3-way switch. are you sure that's what you've got?
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Old 05-30-2011, 04:07 AM   #5
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Bathroom fan always ON


Who ever rewired the switch, caused a constant on to the fan. Put back in the correct switch/switches to control fan & light, and it will be fixed. Post pic's of the light and switch.
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Old 05-30-2011, 10:51 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by gregzoll View Post
Who ever rewired the switch, caused a constant on to the fan. Put back in the correct switch/switches to control fan & light, and it will be fixed. Post pic's of the light and switch.
The switch was never rewired.

I should have mentioned in my initial post that this is my parents house. So, I'm not there to check and make measurements/troubleshoot on the fly.
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Old 05-30-2011, 11:07 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by sirsparksalot View Post
If this is a 3-way, there'll be another switch (operates the fan in two locations). Did you check that switch? Do so, and post back.

From your resistance tests (hope all power was off first), it indicates that the switch is working. BTW: there's no ON/OFF on a 3-way switch. are you sure that's what you've got?
Yes, this is a 3-way switch. I didn't think there was a second switch since all other switches in the immediate area control lights. Maybe there's a switch in the basement or by the thermostat that controls that fan as well.

The power was off when I made resistance tests (I'm an electronics tech) and your right there is no ON/OFF on a 3-way switch.

I should have mentioned in my initial post that this is my parents house. It'll be a couple of days before I go back and check for another switch.

Thanks for your help,
S
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Old 05-30-2011, 11:07 AM   #8
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Bathroom fan always ON


This sounds like the double switch with a common feed, not a three way. The OP states the power is on the Common screw and there are 2 switched hot legs on the black and red.

I suspect a bad switch since the OP said nothing has been rewired.
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Old 05-30-2011, 11:09 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Jim Port View Post
This sounds like the double switch with a common feed, not a three way. The OP states the power is on the Common screw and there are 2 switched hot legs on the black and red.

I suspect a bad switch since the OP said nothing has been rewired.
I have already replaced the switch and got the same result with the new switch.
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Old 05-30-2011, 11:29 AM   #10
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Bathroom fan always ON


Quote:
Originally Posted by spaps View Post
I have already replaced the switch and got the same result with the new switch.
You stated before that you did not do anything to the switch, and now you stated you replaced it. Right there is the problem. Take a picture of the junction box that the switch is in. Most likely you installed the incorrect switch for a incorrect switch that was in there before.
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Old 05-30-2011, 11:37 AM   #11
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Bathroom fan always ON


You know, my nephew was complaining about something similar in his 4 or 5 year old house. I cannot remember the specifics, but there is a switch on the main floor that will turn his upstairs bathroom fan on.

I don't know if it was a 3 way switch or not. We figured maybe it was some sort of interlock situation. Strange very strange.

Maybe the same guy wired your parent's house?
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Old 05-30-2011, 11:41 AM   #12
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Bathroom fan always ON


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Originally Posted by drtbk4ever View Post
You know, my nephew was complaining about something similar in his 4 or 5 year old house. I cannot remember the specifics, but there is a switch on the main floor that will turn his upstairs bathroom fan on.

I don't know if it was a 3 way switch or not. We figured maybe it was some sort of interlock situation. Strange very strange.

Maybe the same guy wired your parent's house?
Multi-wire branch circuit. Only happens when people make changes to a system that worked before, but now things are messed up and the person does not know why. Murphy's law states that once you touch something, it is guaranteed to be screwed up and cause you headaches.
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Old 05-30-2011, 11:52 AM   #13
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Bathroom fan always ON


Quote:
Originally Posted by spaps View Post
I have already replaced the switch and got the same result with the new switch.
Switch the position of the 2 blacks on the switch.
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Old 05-30-2011, 12:00 PM   #14
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Bathroom fan always ON


Quote:
Originally Posted by spaps View Post
I have already replaced the switch and got the same result with the new switch.
I think he is saying the problem existed with the old switch too.
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Old 05-30-2011, 12:38 PM   #15
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Bathroom fan always ON


Quote:
Originally Posted by drtbk4ever View Post
I think he is saying the problem existed with the old switch too.
Because the first switch was never installed correctly.

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