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Old 08-16-2010, 12:18 AM   #16
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series of 1/2 switched outlets


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Originally Posted by chiefsfantrish View Post
Okay, a bit more information. The end of the line of the 1/2 switched outlets: The top copper has red. The bottom has black. The bottom on the other side has the white/neutral.

The top is always hot. The bottom plug does not work on that outlet. The copper side connector has been broken out.

Thanks.
Ok very good information .. thanks.

In one or more of the outlets your backfeeding the red wire. That's why it is staying hot at the switch. This means that somehow constant hot (black wire) is connected in some way to the top half of a receptacle. Some of those reason might be ..

1.) Black wire connected to the top outlet in error
2.) Black wire touching red wire or shorted together
3.) Red wire connected to bottom outlet in error
4.) Tab not fully removed

It's a good bet the problem is in the outlet (receptacle) just before the end receptacle. Look in that box and pay close attention to how the black wires are connected and make sure that a black wire is not feeding the top outlet . It may not be obvious what outlet is before the end outlet. It is possible that it may be getting it's power from any one of the outlets in the series so you will just have to check. Some of the outlets may have more wires than others in the box which would mean that outlet likely is sending power onward to more than one outlet (receptacle). A red wire(s) leaving any one of those switched outlets is taking switched power onward to another outlet.
For some reason constant hot is not continued onward to that end receptacle from the receptacle before it..

Quote:
Switch no. 4: controls only 1 one half switched outlet. Has a red wire that is only hot when switch is on, black wire is always hot. But, outlet is always hot.
Your red wire is not connected to the outlet and the tab is not broken.

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Old 08-16-2010, 07:21 AM   #17
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series of 1/2 switched outlets


Want to do this?

Undo the red wires from one receptacle at a time but do not put them back. Each time, test the remaining receptacles for correct operation (Tape the wire ends).

When you find the remaining receptacles working correctly, you have found the problem, in the last receptacle to be disconnected.

When you do fix the problem, put the wires back one at a time, testing again to see if the same problem was duplicated at another receptacle.

If you undid all of the receptacles without finding anything, test the red wire itself to see that the switch makes it live and dead.
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Old 08-16-2010, 10:02 AM   #18
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series of 1/2 switched outlets


"It's a good bet the problem is in the outlet (receptacle) just before the end receptacle. "

Thank you Stubbie! That was it. You jolted my memory that the last outlet is not a wall outlet...it is inside a built in bookcase. The connection on the hot side was not completely broken off.

I also think that the last switch in the 4 switch box originally controlled 1/2 of the ceiling fan. Many of our rooms in our house had two switches, one for fan and one for light. Since our house is 25 years old, many of the fans have been replaced and don't seem to have two switch controls any more. Not a problem as they have remotes.

Thank you again Stubbie! You Rock!
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Old 08-16-2010, 10:17 AM   #19
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series of 1/2 switched outlets


Quote:
Originally Posted by chiefsfantrish View Post
"It's a good bet the problem is in the outlet (receptacle) just before the end receptacle. "

Thank you Stubbie! That was it. You jolted my memory that the last outlet is not a wall outlet...it is inside a built in bookcase. The connection on the hot side was not completely broken off.

I also think that the last switch in the 4 switch box originally controlled 1/2 of the ceiling fan. Many of our rooms in our house had two switches, one for fan and one for light. Since our house is 25 years old, many of the fans have been replaced and don't seem to have two switch controls any more. Not a problem as they have remotes.

Thank you again Stubbie! You Rock!
Great Trish

Thank you for sticking with us ... eventually we will almost always get to the solution if you have patience.

We need to thank Joed as he is actually the one who suspected you had one tab not completley removed.

One last question .. did the end outlet start working correctly?
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Old 08-16-2010, 11:52 AM   #20
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series of 1/2 switched outlets


Yes. All is okay. The always hot on the last outlet wasn't working but the switched part was. I went back to that outlet in the bookcase and redid the black pigtail and now all is good. I always dread working on that outlet as they have the box just floating in the wall.....it was way too deep and they didn't care when they built the house. I had forgotten that I got some extra long screws and a box extender (don't know if that is the proper name) and fixed it last year and now it is so much easier to work on.

Thank you to Joed as well. I will remember you guys. I wish I had found you when when I had problems replacing the 4 way switches....lots of trips up and down the stairs that day but all came out okay.

Why did they put black outlets in houses in the 80's?

Thanks again....
Trish
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Old 08-16-2010, 12:08 PM   #21
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series of 1/2 switched outlets


Trish

I see you are a chiefs fan. If your speaking of the Kansas City Chiefs so am I ....

As for the black receptacles...it's anybodys guess but likely the builder thought at the time they were the 'in' thing.....or were changed before you changed them again or the original buyers having the home built wanted black.

I wired a kitchen up grade just a few weeks ago and the owner wanted black with stainless steel cover plates to match the stainless appliances but this is 2010.....

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