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Old 11-16-2008, 02:35 PM   #1
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Cannot get new kitchen ceiling light to go off


I replaced a ceiling fan w/ light with a new kitchen light fixture (no fan). The ceiling box has five sets of b/w wires coming in each are clustered and connected. When I hooked up the new black and white wires, the light came on, but will not go off. I experimented repeatedly but the results were: no lights came on, including the dining room and sink light or all lights were on but I could still not turn off the kitchen light.

I noticed that a white wire was connected in the bundled black wires, and I separated it; and that one black wire seemed to be orphaned, and like an amateur, did not review the setup when I removed the ceiling fan. Any thoughts?


Last edited by dbev07; 11-16-2008 at 02:41 PM.
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Old 11-16-2008, 02:50 PM   #2
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Cannot get new kitchen ceiling light to go off


That white wire you separated from the rest needs to be reconnected to the black bunch. It is the feed wire for your 2-wire switch leg.

The lone black wire is the return leg from your switch(-es). It connects to the black wire from your fixture.

The rest of the black wires stay connected together without any connection to the fixture.

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Old 11-16-2008, 03:02 PM   #3
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Cannot get new kitchen ceiling light to go off


kbsparky...Bingo! Dude, you saved my Sunday not to mention my $$$unday. Thanks, db
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Old 11-16-2008, 11:05 PM   #4
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Cannot get new kitchen ceiling light to go off


It's amazing how many people go to replace a light fixture and remove all the wire connections in the box instead of just the 2 or 3 wires that actually connect to the fixture itself. It maybe wouldn't be so bad if they marked which wires went to what or at least took a detailed picture of the wiring....
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Old 11-17-2008, 12:02 AM   #5
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Cannot get new kitchen ceiling light to go off


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Originally Posted by theatretch85 View Post
It's amazing how many people go to replace a light fixture and remove all the wire connections in the box instead of just the 2 or 3 wires that actually connect to the fixture itself. It maybe wouldn't be so bad if they marked which wires went to what or at least took a detailed picture of the wiring....
A homeowner doing it is one thing. But what's scary is that some unqualified people are actually getting paid to do electrical work that they haven't an inkling of how to do right.

In my area of North Alabama, there is no licensing or inspection/permit requirements. I was called to "inspect" a wiring job done by the builder in the new addition to a local church. Here's what I found today.
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Old 11-17-2008, 12:12 AM   #6
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Cannot get new kitchen ceiling light to go off


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I noticed that a white wire was connected in the bundled black wires, and I separated it;
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Old 11-17-2008, 09:39 AM   #7
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You could have saved your Saturday too, if you MARKED the wires before disconnecting them!
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Old 11-17-2008, 09:47 AM   #8
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Cannot get new kitchen ceiling light to go off


Yeah but you don't learn near as much as you do when you use your brain camera to disconnect the wires.....
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Old 11-17-2008, 09:59 AM   #9
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The convention is that, when a single premade two conductor cable (such as Romex) goes to a switch box, the white wire is for the hot feed (unswitched power). Nowadays, both ends of that wire should have a non-green colored band of tape or paint.
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Old 11-17-2008, 01:04 PM   #10
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The convention is that, when a single premade two conductor cable (such as Romex) goes to a switch box, the white wire is for the hot feed (unswitched power). Nowadays, both ends of that wire should have a non-green colored band of tape or paint.
Actually I believe a Hot conductor cannot be any of the following colors: White, Gray, or Green.
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Old 11-17-2008, 02:01 PM   #11
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Nope, reidentification to a constant hot wire is allowed for white in selected situations such as switch loops. It cannot be used for switched power. See 200.7 NEC
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Old 11-17-2008, 07:38 PM   #12
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Actually I believe a Hot conductor cannot be any of the following colors: White, Gray, or Green.
That's why I keep a nice wide black Sharpie with me when doing electrical at home. Easy enough to recolor for identification as hot.
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Old 11-17-2008, 11:07 PM   #13
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That's quite the electrical mess to inspect InPhase277!

Stubbie, what I meant for a color re-identifcation was to color an already white conductor to a different color to indicate it as being hot (IE Red, black, blue, yellow, etc). It was my understanding that marking any color wire with a White, Gray or Green marking is not allowed. Say for instance a bundle of black wires run through conduit for multiple circuits, you can mark them to identify them as separate circuits with any color marking except white, gray or green. Does that make sense?

I understand an already white wire can be re-identified as a hot wire in the case of a switch loop.
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Old 11-18-2008, 07:44 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by theatretch85 View Post
That's quite the electrical mess to inspect InPhase277!

Stubbie, what I meant for a color re-identifcation was to color an already white conductor to a different color to indicate it as being hot (IE Red, black, blue, yellow, etc). It was my understanding that marking any color wire with a White, Gray or Green marking is not allowed. Say for instance a bundle of black wires run through conduit for multiple circuits, you can mark them to identify them as separate circuits with any color marking except white, gray or green. Does that make sense?
Unless the wire is #4. Then re-identification is allowed. However, some supply houses don't have #6 in any color but black, so you are forced to make a minor code violation just to identify the wire!

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I understand an already white wire can be re-identified as a hot wire in the case of a switch loop.
I will add the qualifier that this is only in a listed cable assembly. An already white wire couldn't be used in a switch loop if it were pulled into a conduit as an individual conductor.
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Old 11-18-2008, 10:13 AM   #15
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Cannot get new kitchen ceiling light to go off


Theatretech

No problem, I actually thought for sure you new this.. so I looked back at some related threads...sure enough you are well aware of this being allowed...so my reply was due to misunderstanding your comment....

I would delete my earlier reply but that is considered poor forum behavior....

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