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Old 02-04-2013, 07:29 PM   #1
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Outside lights are dim all the time.


I have my outside lights hooked up and they are always dim. The power comes up from an outlet to the switch then to the lights. All the outlets on the circuit work fine so I don't understand why the lights are dim. I even put up different light fixtures and i have tried different light bulbs and i get the same result. Can anyone help me fix this problem.

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Old 02-04-2013, 07:34 PM   #2
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Outside lights are dim all the time.


What type of lamps are you using?

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Old 02-04-2013, 07:44 PM   #3
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Outside lights are dim all the time.


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I have my outside lights hooked up and they are always dim. The power comes up from an outlet to the switch then to the lights. All the outlets on the circuit work fine so I don't understand why the lights are dim. I even put up different light fixtures and i have tried different light bulbs and i get the same result. Can anyone help me fix this problem.
Check to see if the wiring to the fixtures are hooded up in series instead of parallel. Two fixture in series, each fixture would only received 60 vac instead of 120 vac.
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Old 02-04-2013, 07:47 PM   #4
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Outside lights are dim all the time.


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What type of lamps are you using?
Floresant bulbs
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Old 02-04-2013, 07:51 PM   #5
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Outside lights are dim all the time.


Does the light switch have " on off" on the handle? If not maybe a dimmer switch is installed somewhere else and is dimmed. Could be a 3way circuit.
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Old 02-04-2013, 07:54 PM   #6
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Outside lights are dim all the time.


They are wall lamp porch lights. I've tried regular 100 watt bulbs and the energy saver mini twister bulbs.
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Old 02-04-2013, 08:02 PM   #7
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Outside lights are dim all the time.


How do I know if they are hooked up in a series or not. What do I look for.
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Old 02-04-2013, 08:58 PM   #8
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Outside lights are dim all the time.


Did you install and hook up the lights and wiring yourself?

Series wiring -- Hot wire connected only to one wire of one light fixture. Other wire of that light fixture connects only to ongoing line to next fixture. At next fixture line from previous fixture connects to one wire of fxture. Other wire of fixture goes to continuation to yet another fixture. Never done in household wiring for multiple light fixtures but may be found in some laboratory test equipment for light bulbs.

Parallel circuit -- Hot wire (black) connected to black fixture wire and also to black wire of cable continuing to next light. Neutral wire (white) connected to white fixture wire and also to white wire of cable continuing to next light, as separate bundle from black wires. Same at next fixture.

Note that a switch is connected in series with the light it controls (or in series with a group of parallel connected lights. With power feed cable with hot and neutral entering the box, the hot wire (black) is connected to one terminal on switch. Other terminal on switch connected to black wire of cable going to the light(s). In the switch box the white wires are connected to each other and not to the switch. (Different rules for switch box with only one cable.)
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Old 02-04-2013, 09:07 PM   #9
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Outside lights are dim all the time.


Ok I fixed the dim part but now the first light stays on when I shut the switch off but the second shuts off. This is how I did it.

Outside lights are dim all the time.-image-1154120834.jpg
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Old 02-04-2013, 09:07 PM   #10
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Outside lights are dim all the time.


Have you put a voltmeter on the fitting to read the voltage ?
Can you do so ?

Could be wrong wiring, loose / bad connecttion, faulty cable.

Voltage please ?
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Old 02-04-2013, 09:30 PM   #11
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Outside lights are dim all the time.


What would cause the first light to stay on all the time but the second light will shut off and turn on with the switch
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Old 02-04-2013, 09:59 PM   #12
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Outside lights are dim all the time.


Wrong wiring !
Most likely in series !
Can you post a pic of the wiring ?
Or even draw a diagram ?

What color wires go where ?
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Old 02-04-2013, 10:04 PM   #13
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Outside lights are dim all the time.


I already posted a pic of the way I have it wired now. I tried it another way and both lights worked properly but they were dim. So it has me confused. I wired my whole house myself and this is the only place I have this problem.
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Old 02-04-2013, 10:15 PM   #14
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Outside lights are dim all the time.


Maybe you had two problems ? not just one !
If they both switch on properly.
Next step is to check what voltages are where.
Can you measure at switch and at each lamp base ?
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Old 02-04-2013, 10:15 PM   #15
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Outside lights are dim all the time.


If you have them wired the way you show, then it will work correctly.
You have to have it miss wired.

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