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Old 07-01-2006, 03:08 PM   #1
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Does Home AC ever read 0 volts?


Hello, I just moved into a brand new house and started installing my ceiling fans. Each niche in the ceiling has a black wire, a red wire, and a white wire. I used a digital multimeter to determine which ones go on and which ones go off when the wall switch is toggled. The black and white remained a constant 115 volts regardless of the wall switch position. When the wall switch is off I measure the red and black at 64 volts and the red and white at 32 volts. When the wall swicth is on I measure the red and black at 64 volts and the red and white at 115 volts. So what gives, I thought there should be a pair that measures 0 volts when the wall switch is off? Do I connect to the red and white since it is the lowest voltage in the off position? I also measured the voltage on my switched wall recepticles and they say 32 volts in the off position as well. I just don't remember this being the case at my last house.
Thanks, - Gary

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Old 07-01-2006, 03:14 PM   #2
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Does Home AC ever read 0 volts?


You are getting phantom voltage from your digital meter. The 32 volts is not real.
The black to red measurement is useless.
Since you get 120v regardless of switch position the black is a constant hot. The red is switched from the wall.

At the ceiling, connect the:

-White to the fan white.
-Black to the fan wire for the fan motor. Typically also black.
-Red to the fan's light wire. Typically blue or black striped.
-ALL grounds go together.

This way the light is controlled from the wall switch and the fan is controlled by the pull chain.


You may have other options, if you can tell us exactly what wires are in the ceiling box AND the switch box.

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Old 07-01-2006, 03:47 PM   #3
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Does Home AC ever read 0 volts?


Oh - phantom voltage, lovely. I am putting in a wireless remote so what I would like to do is control the whole thing from the wall and use the remote for the individual light/fan control. So it sounds like I would connect the remote module black to the ceiling red and the remote module white to the ceiling white. Then I would match the black to black, white to white and blue to blue between the fan and the remote module, right? This way I can kill the whole thing from the wall switch if needed to, correct? Thanks for the quick response!

- Gary
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Old 07-01-2006, 03:57 PM   #4
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Does Home AC ever read 0 volts?


Exactly. Also be sure to cap off the black in the ceiling as this always has 120v on it.
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