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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I need some help. I am installing a ceiling fan to replace a light fixture. When I disconnected the light fixture, it had white wire and black wire. The electrical box has two white wires and one bare wire for ground. When power is on, my volt meter shows 120 volts on one white wire but none on the other. Is the one white wire with no voltage considered a neutral? Whats more confusing is I could have sworn the light fixture I took down was connected to the neutral... Is that possible? The wiring instructions say to connect one wire from the fan to the neutral and two other wires to the hot. I just want to make sure I am understanding this correctly before I proceed.

Thanks!
 

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In the ceiling box...

Black (power) to black (light power) and blue (fan power) or whatever combination your manufacturer uses.

White (neutral) to white (fixture neutral) - sometimes multiple.

Ground the fixture to the box.


In the switch box, are you sure you don't have a relabeled black? Two whites and a neutral make no sense, you should not be switching the neutral.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
In the ceiling box...

Black (power) to black (light power) and blue (fan power) or whatever combination your manufacturer uses.

White (neutral) to white (fixture neutral) - sometimes multiple.

Ground the fixture to the box.


In the switch box, are you sure you don't have a relabeled black? Two whites and a neutral make no sense, you should not be switching the neutral.
Thank you for your reply. I am good on how to hook up the ceiling fan. What I am confused about is just figuring out what wires I have in my ceiling box. In the ceiling box, it has a bare wire and two white wires. One of the whites has voltage and the other does not. Is it a safe assumption to say the white without voltage is the neutral? Or can that be completely wrong? Sorry for these questions, I have no electrical experience.

Thanks again!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Ok, I just keep making a fool of myself. I am looking deeper into the ceiling box is I think this is what I see. Looks like the main 3 pair lines were cut in half. The black and reconnected with a screw connector and electrical tape. The bare wires are reconnected as well. The white is not. That is why I was seeing two whites. So my questions are, is it normal for the white to be hot? Does this mean the black is neutral? Sorry for these ignorant questions.

Thanks
 

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Thank you for your reply. I am good on how to hook up the ceiling fan. What I am confused about is just figuring out what wires I have in my ceiling box. In the ceiling box, it has a bare wire and two white wires. One of the whites has voltage and the other does not. Is it a safe assumption to say the white without voltage is the neutral? Or can that be completely wrong? Sorry for these questions, I have no electrical experience.

Thanks again!
Sorry, I misinterpreted what you were saying/read wrong.

Also, is it unusual to have a non black hot wire? In my case the white with voltage. Thanks!
Yes. Black should always be hot. White neutral.

Ok, I just keep making a fool of myself. I am looking deeper into the ceiling box is I think this is what I see. Looks like the main 3 pair lines were cut in half. The black and reconnected with a screw connector and electrical tape. The bare wires are reconnected as well. The white is not. That is why I was seeing two whites. So my questions are, is it normal for the white to be hot? Does this mean the black is neutral? Sorry for these ignorant questions.

Thanks
Please get a pic. It sounds like the old fixture was being switched on the neutral, which is incorrect.
 

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How is power turned off? Is there a wall switch? White wire is often used in a switch loop as a hot wire.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Sorry, I misinterpreted what you were saying/read wrong.



Yes. Black should always be hot. White neutral.



Please get a pic. It sounds like the old fixture was being switched on the neutral, which is incorrect.
I think you are right. I talked to a buddy of mine who said the same thing. I think I have made sense of all of this now. I appreciate everyone's help.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I tried that by turning on the breaker, but turned the wall switch off. Test ed each wire and none were hot.

Thanks!
I was wrong, when the break is on and the wall switch is off. The black wire is still hot. So looks like they were using white is being used from the switch? So my problem is, what do I use for neutral?
 

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I think you really should get a picture. And I would recommend you read a basic wiring book before you proceed...

If you have a switch loop then you have a switched hot white wire, which is only hot when the switch is on (should be taped black though).
 

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If you have a switch loop then you have a switched hot white wire, which is only hot when the switch is on (should be taped black though).
If so it means the switch loop was wired wrong. The white needs to be the constant hot to the switch.
 
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