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Old 04-22-2007, 08:39 PM   #1
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switch loop


hi..
ok i got three ele. outlet im planning on using to plug my shop lights into. now the switch will be at the end of the cable run. will i need to wire each ele. outlet. white going to outlet black to white (mark it hot) on next cable run(going out the next outlet) and so on. or would you just do that on the last outlet on the cable run then go to switch?

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Old 04-23-2007, 05:22 AM   #2
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You need a three conductor cable from recepticle one to rec two and from rec two to rec three.

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Old 04-24-2007, 09:49 PM   #3
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does this look right?
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Old 04-24-2007, 10:23 PM   #4
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No...not at all. Take a look at that closely, really. I'm not trying to be a smart a$$, but learn while you ask...look at the circuit. When you flip the switch, all you're doing is connecting the hot to the nuetral, and the receptacles still have no hot conductor.

A switch is to break the HOT SIDE ONLY. The nuetral is never switched for safety reasons.

How I would do it, personally is this:

- Wire the whole circuit normally, without a switch (in your mind, of nothing else)

- Take the INCOMING hot conductor off of rec. #1.

- Wire-nut that conductor and one side (say the white conductor) of your switch loop together.

- Put the other side of the switch loop (in this case, the black conductor) onto the hot terminal of rec. #1.

- Terminate each side of the switch loop on the switch (can't really mess this up, color doesn't matter).

- Re-identify the white conductor at both ends with black electrical tape.

- Done

The nuetral has NOTHING at all to do with a switch. Alot of times you will see loops not re-ID'ed from white to black, but they should have been. The white you see in those cases is NOT nuetral.

Last edited by jproffer; 04-24-2007 at 10:26 PM.
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Old 04-25-2007, 06:17 AM   #5
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does this look right?
No. You cannot run recepticles in series. they must be run in a daisy chain fasion.

I gave you the ultimate hint. you need a three conductor cable between the recs.

leaving the ground out for drawing clarity is a good idea. Just be sure that it is understood that you still need one.
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Old 04-25-2007, 07:26 PM   #6
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jproffer.....it works, i try that before and it didn't work i guess the reason is being i was doing it on the last rec. of the run. instead of the frist rec. of the run DUH..... thanks for your reply and help!!
and jwhite thanks to you to for your input to buddy! any and all help to my dumb questions are great help.
would 6/4 alum. wire be good to run about 90ft from 100 amp breaker to my 100 amp sub panel buried in pvc conduit?

again thanks guys!
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Old 04-25-2007, 09:24 PM   #7
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100 amp aluminum is number 2.

for feeders of 60 to 200 amps do not worry about voltage drop till you get over 100 feet.
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Old 04-25-2007, 10:02 PM   #8
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100 amp aluminum is number 2.

for feeders of 60 to 200 amps do not worry about voltage drop till you get over 100 feet.

since i will be needing a grounding rod from what everything i have read here on this great diy. forum (btw this a detached garage with no other metal lines of any kind) which be best 3/2 or 4/2 alum.
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Old 04-25-2007, 10:19 PM   #9
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NO metal contact at all?? Are you positive?

No phone lines, no water lines, nothing?

If that's correct you can skip the forth conductor. If you're not absolutely positive, the safe bet would be to use go ahead and use it.

Don't know if you'll find 2-3 or 2-4 anywhere, but I've never looked for it either. But if you do ask about it, call it 2-3 or 2-4 instead of 3-2 or 4-2. The gauge comes first, then the number of conductors.
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Old 04-28-2007, 07:23 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by jproffer View Post
NO metal contact at all?? Are you positive?

No phone lines, no water lines, nothing?

If that's correct you can skip the forth conductor. If you're not absolutely positive, the safe bet would be to use go ahead and use it.

Don't know if you'll find 2-3 or 2-4 anywhere, but I've never looked for it either. But if you do ask about it, call it 2-3 or 2-4 instead of 3-2 or 4-2. The gauge comes first, then the number of conductors.
sorry my bad calling it 3/2 4/2
i think ill just go ahead and run the 4th conductor just to cover the future plans that may happen.
again thanks for your help!!!!
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Old 05-07-2007, 08:52 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by jproffer View Post
No...not at all. Take a look at that closely, really. I'm not trying to be a smart a$$, but learn while you ask...look at the circuit. When you flip the switch, all you're doing is connecting the hot to the nuetral, and the receptacles still have no hot conductor.

A switch is to break the HOT SIDE ONLY. The nuetral is never switched for safety reasons.

How I would do it, personally is this:

- Wire the whole circuit normally, without a switch (in your mind, of nothing else)

- Take the INCOMING hot conductor off of rec. #1.

- Wire-nut that conductor and one side (say the white conductor) of your switch loop together.

- Put the other side of the switch loop (in this case, the black conductor) onto the hot terminal of rec. #1.

- Terminate each side of the switch loop on the switch (can't really mess this up, color doesn't matter).

- Re-identify the white conductor at both ends with black electrical tape.

- Done

The nuetral has NOTHING at all to do with a switch. Alot of times you will see loops not re-ID'ed from white to black, but they should have been. The white you see in those cases is NOT nuetral.
again thanks for lining me out on this...
quick question. now my understand is that i can't use this switch to power another switch in the same box beacuse their is no nuetrul at the switch now. thats right....right
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Old 05-07-2007, 09:11 PM   #12
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You can power the line side of as many switches as you choose. The device that you are trying to feed will have no neutral and therefore will not work.
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Old 05-07-2007, 09:34 PM   #13
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so im going to end up having to run a new circuit to that switch box for power anyways to power the other switchs
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Old 05-07-2007, 09:41 PM   #14
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Now you are risking, mixing up the neutrals again.

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