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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
so i removed my old ceiling fan and instead of there being a box there were just three wires coming out of the ceiling, one black, one green, and the other seems to be black aswell but wrapped with electrical tape? cant tell. i already put on the bracket for the new light fixture and attached the ground wire, and tried connecting the wires but no luck..maybe this pic will help..if at all possible i would like to get it up and running without a box temporarily then this week on my day off do it the right way...thanks and any input is much appreciated.
 

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Do you have a tester of any kind? You need to figure out which is the power coming from the switch and which is the neutral.

There is a switch isn't there?

Cheap neon testers only cost $2.00 or so---Mike----
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
thanks for the answer! yes theres a dimmer switch..ill go buy a tester real quick

edit: will a OEM 12 volt circuit tester work? its meant for automobile use thats why i ask if its the same
 

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No you will pop that thing. 120 volts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
ok i got this, good up to 250v...dont really know how to use one of these though...sorry ive never done anything like this before man

edit: just tested both black wires using the non-contact method and its indicating that both are live..is that possible?
 

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Master Electrician
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Looks like a knob & tube neutral, the one you said is wrapped with tape. Be careful, it could be live.

You wouldn’t believe how many times I’ve seen a switched neutral on knob & tube wiring.
 

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Problem with non-contact voltage testers, they only detect the presence of voltage, not the amount. Those can beep or light-up with as little as 20 or so volts. Not very useful for in-depth troubleshooting. You really need a multi-meter for testing, if you truly want to know what’s going on.

When I troubleshoot K&T wiring, I use my meter and an extension cord plugged into a known grounded receptacle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
oh i see! so if i find out which is hot and which is neutral can i even hook up those modern wires to the ones in the ceiling?
 

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You could also be holding the tester to so that there isn't enough distance between the two wires. Some of those NCV testers can pickup from a few inches away.
 

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Black and red on your multimeter. Black goes to ground, red to the hot wire. Be sure black wire is to ground only, or once you touch the red to whichever is the hot wire, it will spark and could melt your leads. Seen it happen! Should get a voltage to see which is which on the meter.

J-Daddyshammer
 

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i need some help with a light fitting and a dimmer switch!

Hi

I am replacing a light fitting and a dimmer switch

dimmer switch - black and red wires so from memory L1 and wavy line
light - spaghetti junction! 2 cables - each have green, red and black. i followed the instructions but when we switched the electricity back on the switch blew!

i put the old dimmer switch back on but we cant turn off the lights now. I've now removed the light but left the switch connected. We're not in the room at the moment so we dont need to use the light

help? where am i going wrong?
 

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Black and red on your multimeter. Black goes to ground, red to the hot wire. Be sure black wire is to ground only, or once you touch the red to whichever is the hot wire, it will spark and could melt your leads. Seen it happen! Should get a voltage to see which is which on the meter.J-Daddyshammer
Huh!
A digital meter (when checking voltage) doesn't care witch leads connect to witch wires.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
well guys, thanks to all your help and kindness i got it up and running! can't thank you enough! next time i have a home project i will definitely be asking more questions here! and once i build up a lil more knowledge, contribute by answering some of other peoples questions! :thumbsup:
 
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