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Old 08-11-2012, 08:45 AM   #1
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Trouble with three switches in bathroom


I've run power up to my renovated bathroom and set up three switches to:
1. light
2. fan
3. two lights over mirror


It all worked when it was first wired like this, but then the ceiling light kept burning out. I determined that the power source was 240 volt, so I changed that to 120 volt and now it is indicating power but nothing is working yet....

Please help!

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Old 08-11-2012, 08:57 AM   #2
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Trouble with three switches in bathroom


Quote:
Originally Posted by chris54 View Post
I've run power up to my renovated bathroom and set up three switches to:
1. light
2. fan
3. two lights over mirror


It all worked when it was first wired like this, but then the ceiling light kept burning out. I determined that the power source was 240 volt, so I changed that to 120 volt and now it is indicating power but nothing is working yet....

Please help!
Need more info, you ran power from where, the panel? How did you change the voltage? how are the splices made up?

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Old 08-11-2012, 09:36 AM   #3
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Trouble with three switches in bathroom


I took the power from a line that runs directly from the panel. It is from a 'pony' panel that was originally used for 240 volt baseboard heating. I disconnected the neutral wire and put it on the bar at the top of the inside of the panel.

I had all the black wires connected to the power source but disconnected the fan and 'mirror' light so that I could isolate the ceiling light.

Now, the neutral wires are connected together and the power is pigtailed to the switch. The other black wire connection goes to the ceiling light...
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Old 08-11-2012, 09:38 AM   #4
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Trouble with three switches in bathroom


You originally ran 240V to 3 things that require 120V?

Then you figured that out and now have 120V but your 3 things don't work?

It's possible you have ruined your 3 things, especially the motor to the fan.

It's also possible you have your 3 things wired wrong. It almost sound like you have your 3 things wired in series.

so now your fan, and two sets of lights don't work? do you have 120V to each of these items after you turn each of their switches on? I would test for 120V at each item individually by turning on each switch separately. Do you have 120V at those locations when you do this?
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Old 08-11-2012, 09:48 AM   #5
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Trouble with three switches in bathroom


They can't be connected in a series as each has a pigtail to each individual switch.

I've disconnected two of them and have ONLY the ceiling light connected to the power line. What seems odd is that I get a 120v reading even when the switch is in the off position.
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Old 08-11-2012, 09:50 AM   #6
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Trouble with three switches in bathroom


Get yourself a meter and troubleshoot the issue....
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Old 08-11-2012, 09:57 AM   #7
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Trouble with three switches in bathroom


Not very helpful. I'm asking the questions because I don't know enough about electrical problems!
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Old 08-11-2012, 10:05 AM   #8
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Trouble with three switches in bathroom


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Not very helpful. I'm asking the questions because I don't know enough about electrical problems!
Sure it is, Do you have power at the switches? At the loads?
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Old 08-11-2012, 10:13 AM   #9
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Trouble with three switches in bathroom


Yes, I have power to both the switches and the loads.
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Old 08-11-2012, 10:15 AM   #10
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Trouble with three switches in bathroom


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Yes, I have power to both the switches and the loads.
Then the loads are defunct.... you probably let the smoke out of the fan motor when you applied 240v to it, same with the lamps at each fixture, replace lamps and fan.
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Old 08-11-2012, 10:17 AM   #11
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Trouble with three switches in bathroom


Except I didn't have a light on the ceiling, it was just a 'pigtail' light and I'm now using a different one...
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Old 08-11-2012, 05:09 PM   #12
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Trouble with three switches in bathroom


I bought a brand new pigtail light and changed the bulb (to ensure it wasn't simply the bulb) and it doesn't work...

Can you help?
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Old 08-11-2012, 05:15 PM   #13
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Trouble with three switches in bathroom


Quote:
Originally Posted by chris54 View Post
I bought a brand new pigtail light and changed the bulb (to ensure it wasn't simply the bulb) and it doesn't work...

Can you help?
Do you have 120volts at the fixture? if so, then fixture is bad...

If not, then go to switch, do you have 120 volts at switch box? if so, are you sending 120 volts to light fixture, im guessing you have a bad splice or dont really have 120 volts at switch box...

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Old 08-11-2012, 06:13 PM   #14
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Trouble with three switches in bathroom


Am I the only one thinking this is death waiting to happen???
I think we need pictures of the panel to see what is going on before we try to assist you any further.
What you have done so far is deadly dangerous. Please stop until either we or an electrician can assist you.

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Old 08-11-2012, 06:25 PM   #15
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Trouble with three switches in bathroom


(1). Turn off the power to the house before starting, and identify the branch circuit circuit breaker either in the main or sub-panels: Turn the branch circuit breaker supplying power to the bathroom light too-
(2). Now, take a close look at the filament of the burnt bulb - (if it is incandescent, that is) - If it is broken and dangling from one of the bulb's three internal power posts, then try and swirl it around until the filament catches on the adjacent post from which it hangs.
(3). Once this is achieved, gingerly screw the light bulb into the socket, making sure the filament doesn't dislodge, and swing loose again.
(4). Turn the bathroom switch to the on position. (Note, nothing will happen, because the power to the house is off at the main panel).
(5). Lock the bathroom door.
(6). Go to the main panel, and turn on the main power.
(7). Now, gently turn on the branch circuit breaker.
If you hear a loud explosion coming from the bathroom area, immediately turn off the branch circuit breaker, and put a piece of duct tape over the handle. Write - "Do Not Turn On" on the duct tape, and close the panel door.

Never enter the that bathroom again! Build a new one with a sun light in the ceiling and take bathes and showers in the day time. You don't need power in a bathroom...!

Remember, electricity and water don't mix.

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