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Old 06-08-2012, 07:10 PM   #1
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Rewiring Old Ventrola Bathroom Light/Fan/Heater


Rehabing old house with bath that has old Ventrola light/exhaust fan/heater unit that was controled by 3 Leviton switches and a red light that lit when heater was on. Unfortunately I ripped all the old wiring out thinking that I would be replacing the whole unit with a modern light/exhaust fan and to remove the switches/light I clipped
all but two of the wires interconnecting them, so I can't tell which wires went to where. Boss wants to keep the unit with like switches and light.

So, what I have is (a) the light/fan/heater unit with two black and two white wires coming out (b) two 12/2 drops running from light/fan/heater unit to the switch box (c) 12/2 power coming from outlet above switches, and (d) three switches and one light each with only two wire screws each (no ground). These are the replacement switches and light from Pass & Seymour and look exactly like the old Leviton switches. Of the two black/white wires coming out of the light/fan/heater unit I have
identified the pair that serves the heater, leaving the other pair for the light/fan. Also, inside the light/fan/heater unit each device has its own color-coded plug and outlet (e.g., the lights have a white plug that goes into a white outlet and the heater has a brown plug that goes into a brown outlet).

Anyone have any idea how I would rewire this so that each switch controls a separate function and the light comes on when the heater switch is on? Thanks!

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Old 06-08-2012, 10:11 PM   #2
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Rewiring Old Ventrola Bathroom Light/Fan/Heater


Of 4 wires in 'multi-unit', 3 are for each separate function control (lite,fan, heat). The other, one of the whites, is the neutral wire. One white is supposed to have a black mark or black tape to indicate it is really functioning as a black. If you can see this, good.

If the 2 white wires are not distinguished, study them to determine which is different. Three (2 blacks and 1 white) wire internally to devices (lite, fan, heat). The white wire that doesn't go to a device is the neutral.

The 3 device wires go to one terminal of each switch. Doesn't matter which. (One is the heater. After success of complete wiring, and you know which switch is heater, you will have to disconnect wire from switch and connect it first to red lite and then a small wire run back to switch terminal.)

Other terminal of each switch must wire to black hot supply wire from outlet. You will need to make a pigtail connection under a large twist on cap to supply power to other terminal of each of the 3 switches.

The white wire from the outlet must travel to sole white neutral wire of the 'multi-unit'. It probably is capped in the back of the switch box, not connecting to any switches but traveling all the way to the multi-unit.

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Old 06-09-2012, 08:10 AM   #3
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Rewiring Old Ventrola Bathroom Light/Fan/Heater


Thanks a ton for your help! I figured I'd have to pigtail power from the outlet to each of the switches but determining which white from the unit itself was the neutral and which was hot was stumping me, but your simple explanation made it clear.
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Old 08-22-2012, 04:21 PM   #4
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Thanks again for your help - it worked like a charm! All three switches work correctly and the light comes on when I turn on the heater.
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