Wiring a switch to shop lights


  #1  
Old 10-14-03, 06:55 PM
MartyMcFly
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Wiring a switch to shop lights

I am building a workshop in an unfinished room that is going to have 3 florescent shop lights overhead. I want them to be controlled by a light switch (I don't like pull chains).

Can I install a switch, that connects to a box containing two outlets, that controls all 3 lights at the same time? Can this be done? Do I need to be using 2 switches instead?

Also, I have done a lot of basic wiring projects but have never wired an outlet to be controlled by a switch and my electrical book doesn't explain it. How is this done? Is this a no-no??
 
  #2  
Old 10-14-03, 07:03 PM
J
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Yes, this is simple. Run a cable from some source of continuous power to the switch and then on to the box or boxes containing the receptacles. Do you need help with the connections? Where are you going to get power?
 
  #3  
Old 10-14-03, 07:05 PM
frenchsparky
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marty mc fly: first thing here ... yes it been done few time anyway .

ok add new switch at wall near the door or someplace is very convent for you to get in but i rather near the door anyway.,,

start here .
look at the celing box first and see where the wires go for lumaires ,

after you see the outlet box and see where the wires go for the lumaires
if first box have incomming wire and outgoing wire to next box ?
if so , ok hold that spot for a second , then go to next box where the other lumaire is there and see any more wiring going out of the box ?? i will make a short skitch here.


-line-----box--------box
-line-----box--------box


that is first skitch here if the wire match the pattern what i say then go ahead let us know
if not Stop here and post it here

a quick warning here test gfci with light are on to see if the light do go out or not and post back here then myself and few other members can guide it right for wiring


merci , marc
 
  #4  
Old 10-15-03, 08:37 AM
MartyMcFly
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John, that does sound simple and shouldn't be beyond my skill level. There is a large junction box only a few feet away because this room already was a workshop, many years ago long before I lived here.

I do need a little help though. So, I run wire (NM 12/2 okay?) from the power source to the light switch. Then run 12/2 wire from the light switch to the outlet box. What do I do when I get to the outlet box? Keep in mind that there will be two receptacles in there.

Make sense?
 
  #5  
Old 10-15-03, 08:47 AM
J
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At the switch connect the 2 white wires together. Connect the grounds together. Connect the 2 black wires to the switch's 2 screws.
At the receptacle connect as if it were normal receptacle.
Connect the black wires to the brass screws. Connect the white wires to the silver screws. Connect the grounds together and connect to the green ground screw.
Continue the wire on to any other devices or receptacles you need. All devices connected after the switch will be controlled by the switch.
 
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Old 10-15-03, 08:51 AM
R
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Marty,

If you wire from the power to the switch, next to the lights, and finally to the outlets,
then you are going to need a piece of 12/3 somewhere if you want the outlets to be wired as always on, not switched.

You can avoid the 12/3 if you wire from the power to the light, and then run two pieces of 12/2, one to the switch and the other to the outlets
 
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Old 10-15-03, 09:03 AM
J
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Bob, the lights and receptacles are the same thing. He wants the receptacles to be switched because the lights plug into the receptacles. No 12/3 will be required.

Now Marty, let's talk about your two duplex receptacles in a double-gang box question. Think of this this way. Consider how you would wire two receptacles in two boxes. In this case, you would run a length of 12/2 between the two boxes. The solution when they are in the same box is the same, except the wires will be much shorter and you will have removed the NM sheath.

So run the 12/2 into the box. Connect the incoming black wire to one brass screw on one receptacle. Connect the incoming white wire to one silver screw on that receptacle. Then take a short length of black wire to connect the other brass screw on the first receptacle to a brass screw on the second receptacle. Do the same for the whites. For the grounding, connect two bare grounding pigtail wires to the incoming bare wire, and then connect the pigtails to the green screws on each switch.

Since those shop lights have fairly short cords, you may want two simplex boxes anyway unless all three light fixtures are very close together. Better that than using extension cords.
 
  #8  
Old 10-15-03, 09:42 AM
MartyMcFly
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Some of you are confusing me but I thank you for your help. As for John, you are following me 100%! Your instructions are actually how I pictured it would work but I obviously was not sure if it was correct so I had to ask you guys before jumping into the project.

Two of the lights have incredibly short cords and are placed right next to each other so there is no space issue there. I haven't purchased the other light yet but I am going to buy one that already has a longer cord.

I can think of ONE MORE question - I can use a single pole light switch right? Does that mean the 12/2 wire coming from the power source into the switch and the 12/2 wire leaving the switch are all connected to the switch? Two black wires on the brass screw and two white wires on the other screw?
 
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Old 10-15-03, 09:55 AM
R
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Marty,

Sorry, I misunderstood what you wanted to do.

regarding the switch wiring...

At the switch, connect the two black wires to the switch, one to each terminal.
Connect the two white wires together using a wire nut only, do not connect them to the switch or to anything else.

Connect the two bare (ground) wires together and to the ground screw on the switch, and to the box if it is metal.
 
  #10  
Old 10-15-03, 11:05 AM
Rlfrazee
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Marty connect the black wire from power source to the screw on the switch that is the off position connect the black wire from the romex leaving the switch to the remaining screw on the switch. Connect the white wires together in a wire nut. The bare wires also connect together in a wire nut. If the switch has a green screw on it make a short wire stripped on both ends and connect to green screw and in wire nut with other two bare wires. Also bend a hook on the wires that go under screws and place under screw in a clockwise direction. NEVER put two wires under one screw. Next never put neutral white wires on a switch, only black hot wires go on single pole switches. There is an exception about making a white wire a hot wire on a switch leg but this is not your situation. This should be what you need if I understand you correctly. I worry some however since you suggested putting your white neutral wires on the switch this will cause direct short and trip your circuit breaker. Be sure before you do. Good luck with your project....RL
 
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Old 10-15-03, 11:10 AM
Rlfrazee
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Racraft and Marty sorry I didnt scroll down far enough to see Racrafts reply so I was a little redundant .....RL
 
  #12  
Old 10-15-03, 11:45 AM
J
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Marty, please go get a book or two on home wiring before you start. It sounds like you do not have the basics down. Not everything that ends up working is safe -- the book will give you the necessary safety information.
 
  #13  
Old 10-15-03, 11:55 AM
MartyMcFly
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I have a book. Sorry if I sound like I don't know what I'm doing but I am somewhat new to switches. I successfully (and correctly) installed a switch last week for a different project. This particular project is a different situation though.

Don't worry too much guys. I know the basics, I follow my book, I follow the posts on this board, and I have no intention of doing things incorrectly or in an unsafe manner. I'm all about safety. Anyway, thank you a bunch to all of you as you have given me some EXTREMELY HELPFUL information that I will be sure to use. Honestly, I appreciate it and this forum is a lifesaver!
 
  #14  
Old 10-15-03, 07:52 PM
MartyMcFly
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Talking

Marty here. I just finished this project and it looks great! Works great too! Thanks again to everyone for the awesome advice. I'm so proud of how this turned out and I couldn't have done it without you. I drew up a plan before I started which really helped.



...on to the next project!!!

 
  #15  
Old 10-15-03, 08:01 PM
frenchsparky
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i am glad it work out nice


and you are

<marquee>welcome</marquee>



merci , marc
 
 

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