Wiring my basement

Old 12-29-03, 08:37 PM
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Lightbulb Wiring my basement

Currently in my unfinished basement I have one power outlet. I took the front plate off and discovered that 1 outside outlet and 1 upstairs outlet is on the existing outlet as well. I then connected another outlet to the bottom half of the existing outlet and a new outlet off of the 1st. new outlet. I checked the breaker box and discovered that I have now a total of 5 outlets (exterior never get used) and 2 lights that run off of that circuit.

The question I have is, Is it safe to add two outside lights onto this same circuit, and if so do I have to add them onto one of the new outlets or can I tap into the existing one even though all the screws are filled. The reason I'm asking is because the 2 new outlets that I installed are accross the room on an opposite wall than where I want to put the exterior lights and the existing outlet is on the same wall as where I want to put the outside lights.

One more thing. The 2 lights that are on that circuit used to have pull strings so I tapped into the blk. wire and put it on a switch but now the door bell doesn't work when the basement lights are out. Where can I put the doorbell/transformer wiring? The wires are 1 red, 1 white.

Thanks for any input

-Don K-
Old 12-29-03, 08:52 PM
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You may find that there is more than you think on this circuit. For quite a while, it was common to put the basement receptacle on the same circuit that served the receptacles in all the bathrooms, all outdoor receptacles, and the garage receptacle. So you may want to reconsider adding any more loads, especially if anyone in your family uses a hair dryer. Start by turning off the breaker for this circuit and making sure you know everything that is on it.

The next question involves the wattage of the outdoor lights you plan to add. It's one thing to add two 40-watt bulbs. It's another to add two 500-wat bulbs.

You can put the doorbell transformer just about anywhere. It's power requirements are nearly nil. Sounds like you wired the new switch incorrectly and it controls more than you intended (maybe even more than you currently know). If you provide more details about what you did, we might be able to offer suggestions.
Old 12-30-03, 07:13 PM
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I did turn off the breaker to that circuit and there is no outlet in the garage that is powered to it. They are all GFI. The same for the bathrooms. As for the addition of outside lights I just want some that hang on either side of the doors, nothing fancy, so most likely I can find some with low wattage.

The switch for the basement lights is wired by cutting the black wire that came from the main and putting the incoming side on the bottom of the switch and the outgoing to the top side of the switch. I just forgot to move the doorbell. There are 2 sets of wires going to the transformer. Each set has a red and a white. both reds are going to the trans. and the whites are wire nutted to each other. Can I tap into the incoming blk. wire that is on the bottom of the light switch? Which wires do I move?

Thanks for all suggestions and comments.!!

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