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So I thought I would attempt a simple task of putting a duplex in my attic. There was already a switch and a light up there, so I cut the 14-2 off before it got to the switch and wired up a duplex, and then connected the other side of the 14-2 to the other terminals on the duplex. I tried using it and nothing worked. The ground in the switch junction box isn't attached so do i need to pigtail it? Also the terminal with the x next to it is just stuck in the back, ive never seen that before is it anything to worry about? I'm thinking maybe I need a 14-3 or something? I'm obviously very new to this so any help would be greatly appreciated.

Heres a diagram of what im working with. http://imgur.com/PSQ1CcX
 

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flipping slumlord
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So I thought I would attempt a simple task of putting a duplex in my attic.
There was already a switch and a light up there, so...

I cut the 14-2 off before it got to the switch...
Did you verify that the 14/2 at the switch was "always hot" (the feed)
and not just a switch leg which is far (far!) more common in older homes?

Take another look to see if any other wires are at the light fixture.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I checked the light fixture; there is one 14-2 going into it from the switch. How do i tell if its a switch leg?
 

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flipping slumlord
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I checked the light fixture; there is one 14-2 going into it from the switch. How do i tell if its a switch leg?
I asked because if all is as you show in that drawing...
it will (should) work. Check it again.

One point: is the receptacle brand new?
If not... look on the side to be sure the tabs are there.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I asked because if all is as you show in that drawing...
it will (should) work. Check it again.

One point: is the receptacle brand new?
If not... look on the side to be sure the tabs are there.
So does this mean it's not a switch leg? And the receptacle was bought today. The only errors I noticed in my diagram were the black and white wires are actually spliced between the duplex and the switch, although that doesn't exactly change things up too much.
 

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flipping slumlord
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The only errors I noticed in my diagram were the black and white wires are actually spliced between the duplex and the switch...
The layout as shown is fine.
A new receptacle should be fine.
All that's left is the integrity of the several connections.

black ----> Recept ----> Switch __. /.__ ----> Light
white ----> Recept ----> Light
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Oh I may have left out a detail that I didn't realize could have effected it until now. When Initially cutting into the wire it caused a spark because I turned off each individual fuse on the fusebox instead of just turning off the main. (pretty dumb right? did I say this was my first electrical excursion?) Could this possibly have shorted something out?
 

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Oh I may have left out a detail that I didn't realize could have effected it until now. When Initially cutting into the wire it caused a spark because I turned off each individual fuse on the fusebox instead of just turning off the main. (pretty dumb right? did I say this was my first electrical excursion?) Could this possibly have shorted something out?


Then you probably blew a fuse and that's why you don't have any power,check your fuse's.
 

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Oh man that seems too obvious now. Sorry for wasting everyone's time. So I just flip all the fuses back and forth?
If you are flipping fuses, you have another whole set of problems! If you don't know the difference between fuses and circuit breakers (which you obviously have if you are flipping them), you would probably be much safer calling for a professional electrician.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
If you are flipping fuses, you have another whole set of problems! If you don't know the difference between fuses and circuit breakers (which you obviously have if you are flipping them), you would probably be much safer calling for a professional electrician.
Oh right fuses are the glass pieces.. I know I don't have those, I just get my terminology confused. Do you really think a professional is necessary if all I have to do is flip my circuit breakers?
 

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Resi EC
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Don't worry too much about the terms used, not everyone knows the difference between lighting outlets and receptacle outlets either.
What one area calls something isn't always the same somewhere else.

When I tell my guys to "go pull the main" they know I just want the main breaker turned off.
Yes check your breakers, sounds like you may have tripped one. :)

Just two quick questions, did you install the duplex receptacle in a box? and is it a GFCI receptacle?
Most of the time when a wire is cut in the middle, there is not enough wire to bring into a box and make connections, I obviously do not know your setup and there may have been plenty to use.
 

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Electrical Contractor
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I know many people that still call the breaker panel the fuse box. Looks like you got it right. Nice you had the extra wire left there for a receptacle.

Sent from my iPhone using DIY Forum
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Don't worry too much about the terms used, not everyone knows the difference between lighting outlets and receptacle outlets either.
What one area calls something isn't always the same somewhere else.

When I tell my guys to "go pull the main" they know I just want the main breaker turned off.
Yes check your breakers, sounds like you may have tripped one. :)

Just two quick questions, did you install the duplex receptacle in a box? and is it a GFCI receptacle?
Most of the time when a wire is cut in the middle, there is not enough wire to bring into a box and make connections, I obviously do not know your setup and there may have been plenty to use.
I'm not sure if its a GCFI receptacle or not, it didn't say anything about it on the package. But I did flip my breakers and everything works properly now, so thank you everyone for your help, this is quite the nice forum. Also heres a photo of my setup, just incase anyone was curious. Notice I had to use a couple feet of my own 14-2 and there is no return switch line.

http://imgur.com/LPTAiMQ
 

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Those splices need to be in a junction box with a blank cover.
 
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