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kingston73 09-19-2010 02:52 PM

New Member, New House Owner, New Light fixture
Hello, new member here, also a new house owner and I tried and failed at my first electrical install. We have a flush mounted light fixture in the kitchen that stopped working and my wife wanted a new light anyway, so I bought a new flush mount fixture. The old fixture had 3 bulbs wired with just a white and black wire to each bulb (only 6 wires total coming out the top). It was controlled by 2 different switched in the kitchen, one by the front door and one in the hall. When it worked, either switch could turn it off when it was on. When I took it out of the ceiling, I have the following wire terminals: 4 black wires twisted into an end, 4 white wires twisted, 4 bare wires twisted, and a single red wire coming out of one of the black/white/bare wire bunches. This red wire did not seem to be attached to anything when I took the old fixture down.

I took the new fixture, attached the 2 black wires to the bunch of 4 blacks, 2 white fixture wires to the bunch of 4 whites, attached the fixture ground to the green ground screw on the new fixture mount, and when I turn on the main circuit it turns on but the switches don't turn it off. Any help would be greatly appreciated, I'm a complete moron when it comes to electricity and don't really know what I'm doing. I thought this would be fairly easy, clearly wrong.

kingston73 09-19-2010 05:54 PM

Well, answered my own question but would still like an explanation as to what exactly I did. Reading through some online questions and answers sites I found some people talking about a red wire and they solved their problem by connecting the red wire from the ceiling to the black wires in the fixture. Tried it and works, but I don't really understand why? I also don't understand what the bundle of 4 black wires is for since they are just connected to themselves and capped off.

brric 09-19-2010 06:06 PM

Power goes down to the switch. When the switch is thrown power goes through the switch, into the red wire and through the fixture.

oh'mike 09-19-2010 06:13 PM

Those could be any thing---might be the travelers for the 3 way switch--might just be wires going to other openings.

Before your next project buy a simple electrical tester---you can get one for $3.00 or so--

It will help you to figure out things like this.---take a picture of the box as you start work---this can come in handy when things get mixed up---Mike---

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