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Old 02-21-2009, 12:48 PM   #1
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Confusing Chandelier Wires


I'm installing a new chandelier and am confused by the assortment of wires and how to properly connect them. In the electrical box are:
2 copper wires twisted together
single red wire
2 white wires twisted together
2 black wires twisted together

The chandelier has 4 wires:
copper
gold (coated in clear sheathing)
silver, with writing (coated in clear sheathing)
silver, NO writing (coated in clear sheathing)

My thought is to connect the wires in the order they are listed here: copper grounds together, red to gold, white to silver with writing and black to silver without writing...but I'm just making that up. Advice appreciated!

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Old 02-21-2009, 12:57 PM   #2
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Confusing Chandelier Wires


Without seeing the chandelier myself, I would use a continutiy tester to make sure what I think goes where it should, as far as the box in the ceiling, the red should go to the fixture, white to the fixture and the ground to the fixture. black is just 120v passing thru.

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Old 02-21-2009, 01:01 PM   #3
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Confusing Chandelier Wires


The wires in the ceiling appear to be normal: The black wires are probably hot all the time, the whites are probably the neutrals, the copper wires are the grounds and the red wire is probably a switched hot wire from a wall switch.

As for the wires on the chandelier, I have no clue. Normally there would three wires: hot would be black or copper colored, neutral would be white or silver colored and a bare copper ground wire. Is the thing new? If so there is likely a wiring diagram in the box. If there is no wiring diagram, you can figure out what is what, but you'll have to have an ohm meter.
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Old 02-21-2009, 01:01 PM   #4
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Confusing Chandelier Wires


That is why it is so important to mark wires before disconnecting them.
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Old 02-21-2009, 01:12 PM   #5
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Confusing Chandelier Wires


This is a brand new chandelier... I'm a girl, so I don't mind reading the instructions, but I'm afraid they don't include any details related to the connections, unless you count the part about hiring a qualified electrician for the installation. And there wasn't an existing fixture in the electrical box, so I didn't have anything to use as a guide. Thanks for your suggestions.
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Old 02-21-2009, 01:23 PM   #6
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Confusing Chandelier Wires


Look in the paperwork that came with the light. There are almost always wiring instructions.
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Old 02-21-2009, 01:24 PM   #7
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Confusing Chandelier Wires


Actually the red is for the 3-way switch, am I right in assuming there is more than one switch to turn this on?

http://www.homeimprovementweb.com/in...ch-option3.htm

http://www.homeimprovementweb.com/in...ch-option4.htm

Last edited by SDC; 02-21-2009 at 01:27 PM.
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Old 02-21-2009, 01:29 PM   #8
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Confusing Chandelier Wires


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Originally Posted by SDC View Post
Actually the red is for the 3-way switch, am I right in assuming there is more than one switch to turn this on?

http://www.homeimprovementweb.com/in...ch-option3.htm

http://www.homeimprovementweb.com/in...ch-option4.htm
No, she said only one red wire... dont confuse her.
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Old 02-21-2009, 01:31 PM   #9
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Confusing Chandelier Wires


Quote:
Originally Posted by Burnsy View Post
This is a brand new chandelier... I'm a girl, so I don't mind reading the instructions, but I'm afraid they don't include any details related to the connections, unless you count the part about hiring a qualified electrician for the installation. And there wasn't an existing fixture in the electrical box, so I didn't have anything to use as a guide. Thanks for your suggestions.

Hey, can you take a pic of the chandelier wiring, my only guess is that one of the cables is a safety cable, because I've never seen a store bought fixture with the capability of using two switches. but as stated just read the instructions and see what comes up.
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Old 02-21-2009, 02:14 PM   #10
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Confusing Chandelier Wires


There's just one switch to operate this chandelier, and it's a dimmer. Since my original post, I have tested 3 wiring combinations -- none of which included using the black wire. Two of the combos worked but although the chandelier lit up, the dimmer function didn't work. And I'm pretty sure the dimmer is good, as it was installed by an electrician. (Unless perhaps I damaged it today when I blew the fuse testing one of the 3 wiring combinations.) Any thoughts on whether the black wire factors into the dimmer working properly? Many thanks...
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Old 02-21-2009, 02:18 PM   #11
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Confusing Chandelier Wires


Quote:
Originally Posted by Burnsy View Post
There's just one switch to operate this chandelier, and it's a dimmer. Since my original post, I have tested 3 wiring combinations -- none of which included using the black wire. Two of the combos worked but although the chandelier lit up, the dimmer function didn't work. And I'm pretty sure the dimmer is good, as it was installed by an electrician. (Unless perhaps I damaged it today when I blew the fuse testing one of the 3 wiring combinations.) Any thoughts on whether the black wire factors into the dimmer working properly? Many thanks...
You probably blew the dimmer with a short. so how did you connect the wiring from the chandelier? you said you had 4 wires at the chandelier.
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Old 02-21-2009, 02:27 PM   #12
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Confusing Chandelier Wires


Chris, I connected the chandelier ground and one of the silver wires to the outlet ground, the other chandelier silver wire to the red outlet wire and the chandelier gold wire to the outlet white wire. It also worked with the gold wire connected to the ground. It didn't work with the gold wire connected to the red. I'll get a new dimmer switch and see if that works. Thanks for your help and patience with my rookie questions.
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Old 02-21-2009, 02:30 PM   #13
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Confusing Chandelier Wires


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Originally Posted by Burnsy View Post
Chris, I connected the chandelier ground and one of the silver wires to the outlet ground, the other chandelier silver wire to the red outlet wire and the chandelier gold wire to the outlet white wire. It also worked with the gold wire connected to the ground. It didn't work with the gold wire connected to the red. I'll get a new dimmer switch and see if that works. Thanks for your help and patience with my rookie questions.
You really need to know where the wires are going to at the chandelier, just because it works is not good enough, each wire has a certain job and you could cause a deadly situation.
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Old 02-21-2009, 02:34 PM   #14
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Confusing Chandelier Wires


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Originally Posted by chris75 View Post
You really need to know where the wires are going to at the chandelier, just because it works is not good enough, each wire has a certain job and you could cause a deadly situation.
I'm sure you're right. I appreciate the advice. Thanks.
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Old 02-21-2009, 06:29 PM   #15
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Confusing Chandelier Wires


Are the "candles" in the chandelier plastic sleeves that slide off easily?

"Hot" goes to the bottom of the lamp socket. "Neutral" goes to the side of the lamp socket. You might figure out the color coding that way.

The bare wire is ground and none of the wires are intended to support the weight of the fixture.

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