Two lights in series w/ switch at end???

Old 08-16-02, 01:24 PM
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Two lights in series w/ switch at end???

Is it possible to wire to lights in series with the switch at the end of the run???

I have been trying to do this and can't seem to get it to work.

The first few attempts kept blowing the breaker, and now I seem to have some sort of weird voltage split thing going on. Both lights are at about half power.

Here's my current scheme that isn't working.

White from light into breaker.
black from breaker connected to white out to second light

Black out to second light contected to other terminal of light

At the second light ...

white from first light in
black out to switch connected at other terminal

Black in from second light connected to white out to switch

AT the switch

Black on one terminal white on the other

Can anyone help me???
Old 08-16-02, 02:06 PM
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You really did wire in series, not what you want, but let's not worry about the words.

You do have a problem. Since the power is coming in at the light, and the switch is at the other end, you need to have 3 conductors between the two lights, one for the power going to the switch, and one for the switched power back from the switch.

So you will need W1 and B1 at light 1, from the breaker.
W2, B2, R2 between the lights.
W3 and B3 to the switch from light 2.

at light 1: W1 to W2, also pigtail to light. R2 to other side of light. B1 to B2.

at light 2: W2 to light.. R2 to B3, also to other side of light. B2 to W3, put some black tape around W3 to identify it as hot.

at switch: W3 and B3 to the two sides of the switch, again tape around W3.

If you can't run the new cable between the lights, you need to figure out if you can get power at the switch end from somewhere else.

Good Luck.
Old 08-16-02, 03:26 PM
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Thank You!

I'm working in open framing so pulling the three wire shouldn't be a problem.

Thanks again.
Old 08-16-02, 04:02 PM
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I would add this. If you are at this point, and having this trouble, you ought to go to the library, or the bookstore, and get a book or two. Look them over, and make sure you have done everything right (not just that it works) before you cover it all up!
Old 08-16-02, 04:57 PM
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I agree. What you just described is not only wrong, but dangerous. Just take a romex from the breaker to the switch, then from the switch to the two lights. Make sure you wire the whites together and the blacks on the switch. I have seen it many times where people take power to the light and break the ground for the switch. This is not the way to do it. Just letting you know what not to do. Hope this helps

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