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Old 01-18-2010, 09:23 AM   #1
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Need help wiring two lights on one switch


Hi

I am rewiring a bathroom. The power is coming to the outlet. Next to the outlet are two switches. One for fan and the other for the lights above the sink. There are two lights, on on each side of the sink. I did not use a 3 wire switch and the bulbs are emiting poor light. I read that I need a 3 wire light.

Can you help me figure out how the wires should be connected.


Power Black - PB
Power White - PW

Switch Black - SB
Switch White - SW

Light 1 Black - LB1
Light 1 White - LW1

Light 2 Black - LB1
Light 2 White - LW1

How does the Wire white, black and red connect? WW, WB and WR?

Thanks,
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Old 01-18-2010, 09:34 AM   #2
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At the switch/receptacle
Connect the blck power to the gold recptacle and one screws of each switch.
Connet the whites all together and to the silver screw of the receptacle.

At the lights
Connect all the black together and all the whites together. First light will have three of each, cable from switch, cable to next light and fixture. Second light will only have cable from first fixture and fixture wires.
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Old 01-18-2010, 09:41 AM   #3
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I thought I need a 3 wire to connect the lights? They way you suggest is the way I have it connected. if one bulb is out, the other does not work.

The real problem is the lights emit very little light as connected in that fashion.
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Old 01-18-2010, 10:11 AM   #4
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To recap:

At the light fixtures connect all the blacks together. Connect all the whites together. Use the gold screw for a black wire and the silver screw for a white wire.

Should you have the desire to connect two wires to one screw such as on a light fixture, do this instead. Get a 6 inch length of wire (pigtail) of the same color and wire nut this to the two other wires in question. COnnect the other end of the pigtail to the screw.

Connect the switch black to the light fixture blacks (SB to LB1 to LB2). Connect the switch white to the power black (SW to PB). If the switch is in the same box as the receptacle (outlet) and power black, substitute a red or black wire for the switch white.

Connect together the power white and all whites excluding the switch white (PW to LW1 to LW2).

Should you have the desire to connect one wire end to two screws in different places for example the switch and the receptacle unit, get two pigtails. If a pigtail needs to be connected to the power black and switch white, the pigtail should not be white.

It is preferable to connect light 2 to light 1 instead of running both light cables down to the switch box or outlet box. This is because you will have more room to maneuver the wire ends this way. Again, connect all blacks together and then connect all whites together at the light boxes.
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Last edited by AllanJ; 01-18-2010 at 08:44 PM.
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Old 01-18-2010, 10:26 AM   #5
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Right now I have a wire that connects both lights. I have black to black, white to white as suggested.

so it is a one big look, everything in series, which I think is the reason why the bulbs emit 20w or so of light, even if they are 45W.

How come the bulbs are emitting such a low light?

I should note, that I am also powering the fan from the same source.

Last edited by keano016; 01-18-2010 at 10:47 AM.
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Old 01-18-2010, 11:05 AM   #6
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You should not be wiring in series.

It sounds like you had a white wire on the switch. If so that was not a neutral, but part of a switch leg. It should have been the constant hot to feed the switch. The black would be the switched hot going back to the fixture.
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Old 01-18-2010, 04:38 PM   #7
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Can you post a picture of what you have?

Where to where is each cable strung?
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Old 01-18-2010, 05:08 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keano016 View Post
I thought I need a 3 wire to connect the lights? They way you suggest is the way I have it connected. if one bulb is out, the other does not work.

The real problem is the lights emit very little light as connected in that fashion.
This means you have connected the lights in series, you need to connect them in parallel.
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