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Uncle Ben 02-28-2012 10:21 AM

Garage light circuit issue
 
Hi, I have a garage light circuit that I'm trying to modify to accomodate new 4' florescent fixtures that are 3 prong "plug-in". Rather than cutting off the 3 prong connector and wiring them in, I decided to just install an outlet up in the rafters to plug them into. I thought it would be simple, but I guess not simple enough for me since the circuit is not functioning any more.
I drew up a simple diagram to show what the circuit was previously, and then a 2nd diagram to show what the circuit should look like.
For the first diagram the first two light fixtures in the circuit have been removed and you can see in the 2nd diagram the outlet has been added in their place.
I thought I had it all done, but when I turned the power back on and flicked the light switch nothing happened. The last two fixtures in the circuit (didn't touch them) do not turn on and there is no power to the newly installed outlet.
Just for clarity I should mention that I have not touched wiring to the light switch or to the outlet that is at the beginning of the circuit, and have not touched the wiring at the last two light fixtures. I just removed the first two fixures in the circuit and added the single outlet in their place. The circuit was working before I started (the first two light fixtures in the circuit did not work, which is why I started this project to begin with), but the last two fixtures were previously working fine, and now the whole circuit seems dead.
[image]http://i236.photobucket.com/albums/f...ghtcircuit.jpg[/image]
[image]http://i236.photobucket.com/albums/f...itmodified.jpg[/image]
Thanks for you input!

Jim Port 02-28-2012 10:26 AM

There may be a tripped GFI somewhere on the circuit. Did you double check your connections? Check the first receptacle to see if you have power there.

Uncle Ben 02-28-2012 11:43 AM

Thanks for the reply.
I did re-check my connections and they seem solid, so it may be that I have the connections configured incorrectly at the new outlet.

I do NOT have power at that first outlet in the circuit (the one that was already there and was untouched). I actually have a fuse panel in my garage and it does not appear that any fuse is blown, but that did cross my mind since I assume the circuit would be tripped if I had it wired incorrectly.

Also, I believe the wall outlet at the beginning of the circuit is where power is entering the circuit. It is an unfinished garage, so the wiring is exposed within the studs and is easy to trace. There is "newer" wiring leaving that outlet and going to the light switch, and the same "newer" wiring" leaving the outlet and going to the newly added outlet in the rafters (in place of where one of the removed light fixtures was). There is a 3rd set of wires leaving that wall outlet that is clearly the original wiring due to the appearance/age of it, which is why I think that wiring it what goes to the fuse box...but within a couple feet of where it leaves the wall outlet, there is what appears to be another outlet mounted sideways inside the studs. Since it is sideways (and partially behind a cabinet) I cannot get too good of a look at it, but it has some type of round piece coming out of the front of that outlet/box (roughtly the size of a fuse), so now I'm wondering if that could have something to do with the circuit being "tripped" even though the fuses at the box appear in tact.

Sorry for the confusing and long description, but hopefully that sheds some more light (no pun intended) on this entire circuit.

Thanks!

JeepNick 02-28-2012 11:49 AM

Do you have power at the switch?

hammerlane 02-28-2012 12:15 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by Uncle Ben (Post 865635)
Just for clarity I should mention that I have not touched wiring to the light switch or to the outlet that is at the beginning of the circuit,

How did you not touch any wiring at the old receptacle if in your diagram it shows you grabbing power from the old receptacle to power the new receptacle?

Uncle Ben 02-28-2012 01:12 PM

The one labled "new" is where one of the light fixtures was, so when I removed the light fixture and wire-in the new outlet in its place, so I didn't have to open up the "old" outlet since the wiring was already coming to the removed light fixture that I took down.

hammerlane 02-28-2012 01:54 PM

Work your way backwards from the load until you find power. You already know no power at load(new outlet) You say no power at old outlet. So now check for power at switch.

If no power at switch, follow backwards further.

HouseHelper 02-28-2012 02:30 PM

That box with "some type of round piece coming out of the front" may be a fused connection that has blown because you hooked something up wrong. I would check that first and if that is indeed what it is, recheck that all you new connections are properly done.

Uncle Ben 02-28-2012 02:51 PM

Thanks everyone! I will check for power at the switch next, and if dead I will then go to the mystery box to see if it is some type of fused connection.

Uncle Ben 02-29-2012 10:02 AM

Update: I checked for power at the switch and there is no power there. I also pulled the cover off the "odd box" that I mentioned and it is nothing more than a junction box where wiring is spliced together. The weird circle thing on the front is not doing anything. I still don't know what it is, but it is simply attached to the cover plate of the junction box and is not relevant.

I will check the fuses next to see if one is blown even though they look in tact. At this point a blown fuse would be the only thing that makes sense, but I also need to figure out how to properly wire the new outlet in the rafters (the one that is taking the place of the two old light fixtures that were removed) since I obviously don't want to blow another fuse, if that is the issue.

Can you give me some guidance on how I should connect the hot and neutral to the new outlet so that it can properly receive power and also send out power to the remaining two lights at the end of the circuit?

hammerlane 02-29-2012 11:23 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Uncle Ben (Post 866563)

Can you give me some guidance on how I should connect the hot and neutral to the new outlet so that it can properly receive power and also send out power to the remaining two lights at the end of the circuit?

Form a loop on the end of conductor. Wrap hot to the brass terminal, neutral to the silver terminal, ground to the ground terminal.

Why dont you post some pictures of your setup. Something is being lost in translation.

a7ecorsair 02-29-2012 10:09 PM

You are saying that power is fed to the one receptacle that is still in place, never touched. Start there. If you don't measure voltage at the face of that receptacle, there is no need to go any further into wiring.
If all you did is remove the fixtures and installed a box and receptacle onto the existing wiring, you would have just had to connect the black to the gold screw, the white to the silver screw, and ground to green screw.
BTW, is there only one romex cable entering the switch box?

Uncle Ben 03-01-2012 09:23 AM

a7ecorsair: yes, you are exactly correct, and I see your point about no voltage at the original/untouched outlet...so that tells me that the fuse must have blown so that will be my next step.

And yes, there is only one romex cable entering the switch box.

Thanks!

hammerlane 03-01-2012 09:29 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Uncle Ben (Post 867349)
.so that tells me that the fuse must have blown so that will be my next step.

Almost 24 hours and you have not checked the fuse??

Uncle Ben 03-01-2012 10:26 AM

No, I have not even gone in my garage in the last day or two...no time, but I plan to finish this weekend.


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