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Old 01-16-2008, 04:24 PM   #1
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Question(s) about 2 wire Thermostat - need help, won't turn off!


Hello:

While I've checked this site more than a few times while working on random projects around the house (and found it very helpful!), this is the first time I've posted.

I just installed an lcd video projector on my ceiling and built a projection screen to hang on the wall in the living room of my apartment, which was built in 1969.

The problem is that this old school thermostat control thing was protruding too far out of the wall for me to hang my screen. Since we never use our heater, I figured I'd remove the large knob, take off the faceplate, and replace it with simple flush mount faceplate I just bought, so as to make the wall one large flat & even surface.

I turned off all the power at the circuit / breaker box, removed the knob, and unscrewed the housing unit thing (what's the word?), and simply pushed the remaining switch, with the same red & black wires attached to it, back inside the wall. Then I screwed on the new faceplate, thinking that I'd done just exactly what was needed for me to hang my screen.

Except that now the heater is on, super strong, and I can't turn it off! I haven't (yet) changed any of the wiring, just unscrewed / removed the outer housing that the switch was in.

Any ideas / comments / suggestions on what I can do from here? Can I simply cut the red & black wires from the switch, crimp on plastic end connectors, and shove the wires back in the wall? Seems like that wouldn't be too smart to have two live wires just ending in plastic housings, but I'm at a loss for what to do...

The Unimax switch that both wires are connected to has a silver pushbutton on it, that I thought may serve as an 'on-off' switch, but I've pressed it a few times, waiting an hour or so between each time to see if the heater turns off, but no luck.

The switch says "Unimax Switch" "Made in USA" and "WHR20-05-W" on it. I've searched this site, google, and more, and can't seem to find an answer for what to do! If you've got any help or advice, I'd very much appreciate it!

thanks!

Lastly, I've taken some photos of the switch, box, and housing assembly that I've removed, in the hopes that seeing what it looks like may help identify a solution for me. I'm going to try to 'embed' them in this post, but not sure if it'll work. If not, please check the this link where I've uploaded them.

thank you again So much for any help you may be able to provide.
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Old 01-16-2008, 04:56 PM   #2
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Question(s) about 2 wire Thermostat - need help, won't turn off!


Maybe try holding that button for a few minutes?

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Old 01-16-2008, 06:03 PM   #3
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WOW, you are lucky that it didn't short out inside the box and cause a fire. I can imagine how much you'd be liable for in that case, someone could have been injured or worse. That's 240 volts your dealing with.
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Old 01-16-2008, 06:24 PM   #4
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big mike is right, that thermostat you have ain't the low volt kind, that baby is the high voltage thermostat. I don't think you see those much anymore LALa.
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Old 01-16-2008, 07:19 PM   #5
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Question(s) about 2 wire Thermostat - need help, won't turn off!


Remove the 2 wire nuts on the t stat leads, take off the tstat and use the nuts to SECURELY cap the wires. Tuck the wiring back in the box and put the cover on.

Save the tstat.
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Old 01-16-2008, 09:57 PM   #6
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Question(s) about 2 wire Thermostat - need help, won't turn off!


The red and black assembly was a switch all right, but after you took the knob and faceplate away, the switch ended up in the on position. When the little button is held in (I think) the switch goes to the off position. You would have to hold it in for about a half hour to notice the heater cooling down.

This switch controls the 240 volt power to the heater directly, just as a regular toggle switch controls the 120 volt power to a light directly.

The faceplate contains a metal strip (in the picture, I think has the name O CHACE stamped on it) whose curvature depends on the room temperature and whose position tilted in or out depends on how the knob is turned. The strip bends to push or release the silver button to maintain the desired temperature automatically.

Last edited by AllanJ; 01-16-2008 at 10:09 PM.
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Old 01-16-2008, 10:07 PM   #7
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Question(s) about 2 wire Thermostat - need help, won't turn off!


Quote:
Originally Posted by WestsideAudioFan View Post

I just installed an lcd video projector on my ceiling and built a projection screen to hang on the wall in the living room of my apartment, which was built in 1969.


this is the Key word here apartment you should concat the landlord first place before you mess around with the system.

Merci, Marc
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Old 01-16-2008, 10:19 PM   #8
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Question(s) about 2 wire Thermostat - need help, won't turn off!


You guys rock...thanks so much for your timely response.

I was somewhat scared to think about what could have happened, but I guess I'm happy that I decided to check here before blindly trying too many random things....

Sorry if this is a super-ignorant question, but I'd just like to be 100%sure I do the right thing here...I know I need to cut both the red & black wires, then cap both wires & tuck into the wall.

Where exactly should I cut though? I tried to make a cheesy little diagram that shows three possible places to cut & cap.....I'm guessing #1 is the best place to cut, but considering both my lack of expertise and the high voltage, I'd like to be sure

thanks again
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Old 01-16-2008, 11:15 PM   #9
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Question(s) about 2 wire Thermostat - need help, won't turn off!


Turn off the power, remove one wire nut at a time and undo the twist and reinstall the wire nut on your wire 2 and 3. I still don't think you should be doing this in an apartment as it isn't your property and you obviously are not a licensed electrician.

Last edited by bigMikeB; 01-17-2008 at 07:18 AM.
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Old 01-17-2008, 01:12 AM   #10
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It's not rockey surgery. Don't cut but untwist the wirenuts at #2 and just below #2 leaving the black and red pigtails on the switch. SAVE all the pieces.
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Old 01-17-2008, 10:02 AM   #11
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Ayuh,......

After the circuit breaker is turned OFF,......

Remove the wirenut at #2, seperate the wires,+ reinstall the wirenut to the wire coming Out of the wall.......
Then do the Same thing to the wire below #2,......

As noted,..... No reason to Cut anyhing.....
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Old 02-17-2011, 08:16 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WestsideAudioFan View Post
You guys rock...thanks so much for your timely response.

I was somewhat scared to think about what could have happened, but I guess I'm happy that I decided to check here before blindly trying too many random things....

Sorry if this is a super-ignorant question, but I'd just like to be 100%sure I do the right thing here...I know I need to cut both the red & black wires, then cap both wires & tuck into the wall.

Where exactly should I cut though? I tried to make a cheesy little diagram that shows three possible places to cut & cap.....I'm guessing #1 is the best place to cut, but considering both my lack of expertise and the high voltage, I'd like to be sure

thanks again

I'm looking for a similar replacement switch except my model number is WMB154-9-W. Did you ever find a replacement?
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Old 01-17-2014, 02:01 PM   #13
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Question(s) about 2 wire Thermostat - need help, won't turn off!


Hello,

I have the exact same thermostat as the OP. Same problem, it won't turn off. I've already disconnected it to save power but am looking for a replacement. Does anybody know of any suitable replacements for the unit? I don't care if it is the same thermostat, just need one that would suit the application. I've tried searching for two wire thermostats but there are so many and I don't know if they would work for me.

Thanks
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Old 01-17-2014, 05:24 PM   #14
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Question(s) about 2 wire Thermostat - need help, won't turn off!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Duckhook View Post
Hello,

I have the exact same thermostat as the OP. Same problem, it won't turn off. I've already disconnected it to save power but am looking for a replacement. Does anybody know of any suitable replacements for the unit? I don't care if it is the same thermostat, just need one that would suit the application. I've tried searching for two wire thermostats but there are so many and I don't know if they would work for me.

Thanks
Ayuh,.... Right here is 927,000 answers to yer question,....

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