DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum

DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum (
-   Electrical (
-   -   Hot wires on both sides of switch (

RedRumLoki 11-20-2012 08:28 PM

Hot wires on both sides of switch
So here is my issue... I have three lights that are not working...#1 is the porch light, #2 is driveway light, #3 is foyer light. All appear to be on the same circuit. #1 porch light was looking kinda nasty so i decided to replace it with a light that was automatic and would turn on when it was dark. I replaced it with no issues and it came on that night and was off in the morning when it was daylight... However the next night the light would not turn on... I thought maybe it was a bad fixture took it back to the store and replaced it... when i got home and went to install the new light i turned on light #3 foyer light to shed some light on what i was doing on the porch as it was already dusk.. light #3 foyer light came on for about 30 seconds then flickered and went off...i turned it off and tried the switch for light #2 driveway light and it didnt turn on i sat there with all switches off for a minute then turned on light # 3 and it came on and stayed on the whole time i put up the new light #1 on the porch... all was working fine. when i got up in the morning light #1 was off again and now light #2 and #3 wont turn on at all... So I started trying to test things....from the wiring i can see a white wire that is hot comes into the bottom of the switch that controls light # 2 driveway light...then comes out of the switch at the top and to what i assume is the driveway light fixture. In the box where the #1 porch light goes there is a white wire that is hot and has continuity with the white wire on light #2 driveway lights switch...this white wire is connected to a black wire that goes to the bottom of the switch that controls the #1 porch light...after the switch a white wire comes out of the top and goes to the #1 porch light fixture... the issue im facing is that none of the three lights work... the switch for the #1 light fixture has power at both the black and white wire even with the switch taken comepletely out... and if i switch the switch that controls light #3 foyer light to on the switch that controls #2 driveway light gets power to both the black and white wire even with switch out of the very baffelled as to what is happening and any help is much appreciated..


Missouri Bound 11-20-2012 09:14 PM

Wow...that's really hard to follow. How about a picture with numbers for the switches? White wires aren't hot wires, but they can be part of a switch leg. You need to find out where the power comes from first. then wring out the wiring.

RedRumLoki 11-20-2012 09:18 PM

i know its very confusing.... i dont have a camera right now or i would have taken pictures...but hot is coming in on a white wire to the switch that controls the driveway light...the porch light box has a white wire in it that when tested for continuity with the white power wire at the driveway light switch beeped for good continuity...that wire is wire nutted to a black wire that goes to the switch for the porch light... hope that helps...feel free to ask questions and ill try to answer them the best i can

Missouri Bound 11-20-2012 09:27 PM

Are these switches in the same box....3 in a row or what? And it's more likely that the white wire is part of a switch leg rather than being a hot wire. You can make a drawing and attach if a picture isn't possible.

RedRumLoki 11-20-2012 09:37 PM

1 Attachment(s)
here is a very crude drawing done with paint... i only know for sure the wiring schematic of the two lights i dont know where the hall light is tied in at for sure tho... as you can see two switchs are in one box the third is seperate

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:05 PM.

User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2016 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.