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Old 10-17-2010, 05:07 PM   #1
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garage lighting


I'm working on the lighting for my garage. My house, garage , wiring are about 45 years old. The wiring out there is set up power-L1-L2-L3-L4-L5-SW using the old 2 wire black/white with no ground. Previously they had only one light socket on L5 and the rest were left junction boxes. I wanted to see so I wired a light socket at each of the remaining 4 boxes.

Now at L5 they have the white/black switch wire entering the junction box along with L4 power wire and connects white from switch to black of L4 and the other white/black to the light. Turing the power on with the switch off, L5 goes off but L1-L4 stay on 24/7. Is there a way to use this existing wire and wire it correctly so all lights go off and on with the switch? Should the switch wire enter and cross with L1 instead of L5 and would it be safe to do so with out having a ground wire or using 14-3?

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Old 10-17-2010, 05:15 PM   #2
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You need to run another wire between the power and the box where the switch cable enters.

With this in mind you might as well rewire the whole thing with ground wire. Run 3 conductor cable with ground between the box where the power comes in and the box where the switch cable comes to. In your case this means 3 conductor all the way from L1 through L2, L3, L4, to L5.

Excluding the black power lead connect all the blacks together (switched power). Excluding the white wire to the switch, connect all the whites together (neutral). Then connect the remaining wires together (unswitched or raw power).

Had you had more up to date 2 conductor wireing (with ground) it would be simpler to run an additional 2 conductor cable from L1 to L5 passing by the outside of boxes L2, L3, and L4 if that was the best routing. Here the wiring would be different. Connect the power only to the new cable at box L1, both black and white. This sends the power to L5 where the switch cable is. Now, at box L5 connect the white wire to the switch to the the new incoming black to send the power to the switch. Then connect the rest of the whites together (neutrals) and connect the rest of the blacks together (switched power).

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Last edited by AllanJ; 10-17-2010 at 05:31 PM.
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Old 10-17-2010, 05:25 PM   #3
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I'm looking to stay away from rewiring the whole thing, right now at least. The wire from the switch going to L5 is long enough to reach the power-L1 connection so could the switch be crossed in there instead?


The edited part of your post (last paragraph) sounds like it would run the same as taking the switch wire directly to the power wire at L1 seeing it can make it there. With the exception that I have no ground wire. Would this be alright still or would it pop fuses and put the house in flames?

Last edited by tish; 10-17-2010 at 05:48 PM.
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Old 10-17-2010, 06:45 PM   #4
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It will work without ground wires and without burning the house down.

Yes you can take the cable from the switch and insert it at L1 indtead of L5.

Connect the power black to the switch white. Connect the remaining white wires together. Connect the remaining black wires together.
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