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Old 02-22-2009, 04:22 PM   #1
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Trying to replace ceiling fixture

Hi, once again I'm in over my head

Trying to replace ceiling fixture that has one on/off switch at the top of the stairs and one at the bottom.

Old fixture removed, held two light bulbs, had one white, one black and the copper house wire.
New fixture has two light bulb recepticles, one ground wire, and two black and two white wires.

I wired all the black together, all the white together and the two grounds together.

Screwed in one of two light bulbs, flipped breaker back on, flipped on downstairs switch, worked great!

Went upstairs to turn light off - breaker tripped. Tried several times flipping, tripping switches and breaker. Nothing worked.

Ok, so I've done something wrong - what now?


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Old 02-22-2009, 04:47 PM   #2
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Sounds like you have it wired correctly. Turn off the breaker and open and pull out the switch upstairs and downstairs. Make sure no wires are touching each other and all looks good in the switch boxes. If you opened either switch box for any reason while installing the fixture, it's very possible the problem is in one of them.
Did you do anything in either of these switch boxes? If so, thats where you should look first.


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Old 02-22-2009, 05:01 PM   #3
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trying to install ceiling fixture

I haven't opened either switch box, but I will...does it matter that the old fixture was probably from the 1970s or earlier?
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Old 02-22-2009, 06:51 PM   #4
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If the was only a black, white and bare in the light JB, there are only a couple of things that it could be.

1) one of the switches just happened to go bad.

2) One of the switches has been bad for a while but you didn't notice it.

3) It was miswired since who knows when and has always been this way.

Test/replace the switches. When replacing the switches, the only thing important is the location of the wire on the terminal marked common.
If you mix them up we will be here all day. Someone may have already mixed them up.

Do the switches look like original equipment?
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