Installing Fan/Light combo


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Old 02-29-04, 08:44 PM
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Installing Fan/Light combo

What I have is an existing switch controlling an overhead light in our bathroom. I am moving the switch to another wall no biggie got that to work no problem.

We are installing a new light/fan combo kit in the bathroom. The problem I am having trouble figuring out is that we want the fan and light to run on seperate switches.

How can I wire this so I get both fixtures on seperate to work on switches? I got the light to work but lack the knowledge on how to wire the second switch to make the fan work.

I am talking about the wiring at the switch.

At the switch and ceiling I currently have the Hot(black), Neutral(white), and ground(bare) wires
 
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Old 02-29-04, 09:24 PM
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I know you have black, white and bare wires, but it is important to know how many of each are in each box.

Please give a complete inventory of the wires in the switch box. Are there two black wires and two white wires, or just one of each?

Are you replacing the existing light with the fan/light combo, or is the combo in addition to the existing light?

Is there an attic above this room so that it is easy to add more cable?
 
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Old 02-29-04, 10:10 PM
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My apologies there is one of each Black white and bare at the ceiling and in the switch box.

This is a complete redo of bathroom so running new wires is a breeze as it is just stud walls/ceiling with full basement below.

We are replacing the current fixture with the fan/light combo
 
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Old 02-29-04, 10:36 PM
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If there is just one wire of each color at both the switch box and the ceiling box, then there is another junction box somewhere where each of these sets of wires goes. You need to find that junction box and tell us about it. This obviously cannot work with just wires running from the switch box to the ceiling box. There must be a source of power coming from somewhere. Where does it come in?
 
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Old 02-29-04, 11:14 PM
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I do understand what your getting at but

The wire from the switch disappears into unknown lands. The wire from the ceiling also disappears into unknown lands.

This old house is/was lath and plaster walls/ceilings etc. With high ceilings since lowered with stud/drywall ceiling. The only way I can access any old junction boxes would be from the bottom side as the top(attic) side has been turned into living spave previously and is not accessible at all. This would also entail being buried in lath and plaster from the original old ceiling.

So in retrospect all walls and ceiling other than the original ceiling are down to the studs.

Is there any way to get around doing the above mentioned?

I have what I call a beeper that I can use to test which way power comes from will that help? The ones that beep faster and faster as you get closer to the electricity. I will not be able to test this tonight but can tomorrow.

Once again I appreciate your help and apologize for my lack of complete informations.
 
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Old 03-01-04, 08:10 AM
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To have the fan and light operate off of separate switches in the same box you need some 3 wire cable. You need power at either the fan/light or the switch and a 12/3 cable between the switch and the fan/light combo.
 
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Old 03-01-04, 09:04 AM
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Are you sure that there is only a single black and single white wire at the switch and a single white wire and a single black wire at the light? Are there no other wires at all in these boxes? This would be most unusual.

However, as you have the walls and the ceiling open, you can do what you want, and finding the existing wiring is not an issue.

Use 14-3 if the existing wire is 14 gauge, or use 12-3 if the existing wire is 12 gauge. I have written directions below assuming 14 gauge wire.

At the switch box connect the two wires that are presently attached to the switch together with a wire nut. Then push them to the rear of the box.

Run a piece of 14-3 from the light to the switch box. At the light leave the incoming white wire connected to the white wire(s) for the fan and light. Also at the light connect the white 14-3 wire to the incoming black wire. The black and red 14-3 wires are to be connected to the hot wires for the fan and light.

At the switch, connect the white 14-3 wire using 2 pigtails (short pieces of insulated wire) to one screw on each switch. Connect the red 14-3 to the other screw on one switch, and the black 14-3 wire to the screw on the other switch.

The ground wires at both locations should be connected together and to the metal boxes, the switches, and the fan/light.

The white 14-3 wire whould be reidentified as hot at both the light and the switch. Use a black permanent marker to do so. Just color the white insulation near the end so it is easily noticeable.


While you have the walls open you should install and/or upgrade the existing wall receptacle outlet to be within code. This probably means a new 20 amp circuit from your panel to the bathroom to a GFCI outlet. At the very least you should convert the existing outlet to a GFCI and or install a GFCI outlet if none is present.
 
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Old 03-01-04, 03:38 PM
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After further inspection I do have one black, white, and bare wire at both the switch and in the ceiling.

I do not have access to the junction box where these two meet.

According to my beeper, see above, I have electricity coming to the switch. Black, white, and bare.

I have since also ran a 14-3 (black, red, white, bare) from switch box to ceiling for fan/light combo

At the switch box connect the two wires that are presently attached to the switch together with a wire nut. Then push them to the rear of the box
So I am connecting the original white to the orginal black?


At the light leave the incoming white wire connected to the white wire(s) for the fan and light
Incoming white wire from the switch to the ceiling? So the neutrals are all together at the light? Am I following you correctly?


If I got this right then it should work. I will let you know come tomorrow 8^)
 
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Old 03-01-04, 03:44 PM
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Yes, you read what I wrote correctly.

If all you have at the switch is a black and white, and they both go to the switch, then you have a switch loop.

The existing wires at the ceiling should be a white and black. The white should be the neutral, and the black should be the hot wire, switched at the switch.

What I am asking you to do is to make the black wire at the ceiling always hot. You do this by installing the wire nut in place of the original switch.

I am then asking you to send the always hot black wire down to the switch box on the new piece of 14-3, via the white wire. You are creating a switch loop. At the switch box you will switch the white wire which is now always hot to the black and red wires which run back up to the ceiling box.
 
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Old 03-01-04, 05:03 PM
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Great thank you

I will post my results come tomorrow
 
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Old 03-02-04, 10:18 AM
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Worked perfectly thank you for all the help
 
 

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