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Old 08-14-2012, 05:14 PM   #1
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Ceiling Light with Switch Loop?


I have found many different scenarios similar to mine online, but none are the exact same, so I'm having trouble figuring out exactly which wires to connect. The previous homeowner took away the lamp she had up, so I can't compare it to what was there before.

In the ceiling junction box, there are two sets of wires. One is black, white, and red (it looks orange, but I'm assuming it's red), and the other is black and white. I guess one of these comes from the circuit breaker and one comes from the switch. My new ceiling light has one black, one white, and one green wire.

Any step-by-step instructions would be very much appreciated! Thank you in advance!

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Old 08-14-2012, 05:18 PM   #2
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Ceiling Light with Switch Loop?


Quote:
Originally Posted by rookie49 View Post
I have found many different scenarios similar to mine online, but none are the exact same, so I'm having trouble figuring out exactly which wires to connect. The previous homeowner took away the lamp she had up, so I can't compare it to what was there before.

In the ceiling junction box, there are two sets of wires. One is black, white, and red (it looks orange, but I'm assuming it's red), and the other is black and white. I guess one of these comes from the circuit breaker and one comes from the switch. My new ceiling light has one black, one white, and one green wire.

Any step-by-step instructions would be very much appreciated! Thank you in advance!
So who took the splice apart? You can try splicing the blacks together, and tucking them in the box then use the red and whites to the fixture...

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Old 08-14-2012, 05:22 PM   #3
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Ceiling Light with Switch Loop?


The way it was left for me in the ceiling was with the two black wires capped together, the two white wires capped together and the red wire with its own wire cap.

So, I should leave the blacks in the ceiling as they are, and connect the ceiling white to lamp white and ceiling red to lamp black?
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Old 08-14-2012, 05:34 PM   #4
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Ceiling Light with Switch Loop?


That would be my guess. You could easily tell with a volt meter tho.
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Old 08-14-2012, 05:53 PM   #5
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Ceiling Light with Switch Loop?


I checked with a volt meter. The red wire is hot, and one of the two black wires. The other wires are not, even when I flip the switch on. Does that make sense? Sorry for my ignorance!
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Old 08-14-2012, 05:59 PM   #6
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Ceiling Light with Switch Loop?


An actual meter or a tic tester?
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Old 08-14-2012, 06:07 PM   #7
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Ceiling Light with Switch Loop?


I'm not sure. It says Contact/Non-contact AC Voltage Detector. Is that not what I should be using?
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Old 08-14-2012, 06:11 PM   #8
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Ceiling Light with Switch Loop?


no-contact testers are unreliable. anyway, one of those wires should go on and off with the switch. either black or red.
if the two blacks were nutted together, one of them probably feeds another device, while the other is constant hot.
that only leaves the Red for the switch leg, but again these are just guesses.

turn off the power to this circuit, and pull out the switch. you may be able to tell which wire is the switch leg.
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Old 08-14-2012, 06:49 PM   #9
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Ceiling Light with Switch Loop?


There are two black wires coming out of the switch.

There are two sets of wires coming into the box at the back, which look like they match up with the ceiling wires. (One set is red, white & black, and the other is black & white.) The two white wires are capped together in the box. The two black wires are also capped together along with one of the black wires from the switch. And the other black wire from the switch is capped to the red wire.

There is also a green grounding wire that is connected to the switch plate, but the other bare end of it isn't connected to anything.
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Old 08-14-2012, 07:01 PM   #10
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Ceiling Light with Switch Loop?


if i understand correctly, you have a Black "pigtail" off a few black wires which go to the switch. this should be the constant hot.
then you have a Red wire which has a Black pigtail also going to the switch. this should be the switch leg.

are there any other wires capped together with the Red wire and the Black pigtail??
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Old 08-14-2012, 07:08 PM   #11
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Ceiling Light with Switch Loop?


There aren't any other wires capped to the red wire or the black pigtail.

So, that means that I should connect the red ceiling wire to the black lamp wire and both ceiling whites to the white lamp wire? The two black ceiling wires should just remain capped together. Have I got it?

Do I need to worry about the green switch wire not being connected to anything? (I know I need to connect the green lamp wire to the lamp bracket. That at least was in the instructions!)
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Old 08-14-2012, 07:25 PM   #12
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Ceiling Light with Switch Loop?


that looks to be correct. i would confirm the switch wire, but if youre certain they go together im sure it'll be fine.
if there is a ground screw on the switch it should be pigtailed with the bare grounds in the switch box.

let us know how it worked out
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Old 08-14-2012, 07:49 PM   #13
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Ceiling Light with Switch Loop?


you want the wall switch to break the power when it is in the OFF position so the RED/HOT needs to go down thru the wall switch then up to the lights BLACK.if you tie the red/hot to the lights black it won't shut off.
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Old 08-15-2012, 03:30 PM   #14
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Ceiling Light with Switch Loop?


I wasn't able to hang the lamp until this morning, but it worked! Thank you so much for your help, Mister Z!

(biggles, I did connect the red ceiling wire to the lamp's black wire and the switch controls it properly.)
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Old 08-15-2012, 07:09 PM   #15
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Ceiling Light with Switch Loop?


See, that wasnt so bad

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