switch wiring question

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  #1  
Old 12-07-04, 11:31 AM
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switch wiring question

A friend just replaced some duplex outlets and switches. I think he bought the wrong switch/s for a basement stair light that was working o.k. before he changed out the switches. I think he installed a single pole /single switch where a single throw/ double pole switch should be at one of the switches.
The problem was that every time he threw one of the switches,it tripped the ckt. breaker. Can someone confirm my switch suspicion of a single pole,and tell me how the wiring should be on the double pole switch if that is the problem? Wire colors are black,white and red .

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Old 12-07-04, 12:42 PM
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He wired something wrong, probably at the switch. He's creating a short when turning on the switch.
 
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Old 12-07-04, 01:29 PM
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He told me he bought anew switc and wired it Blackto gold terminal,white to the silver terminal,and the red to the ground terminal. Hence,it kept tripping the ckt.brker.
I think he needs a switch with 2 sets of terminals with maybe a ground. Does that sound right?
also,need to know what gets wired where. term1 X X term2

term3 X X term4
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  #4  
Old 12-07-04, 01:49 PM
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I'm pretty sure the old switch was a 3 way switch. Do you still have the old switch. It looks like you have a 3 way switch setup if those are the only conductors in the box. The black and red would probably be the travelers (connected to the 2 black screws on a 3 way switch) and the white will be connected to the third screw. Don't mistake the green ground screw for an active conection point. Nothing but a ground wire should connect to that screw.

If you have another switch that controls the same light (or used to before) then you have a 3 way switch, and you require a 3 way switch.
 
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Old 12-07-04, 01:54 PM
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He told me he bought anew switc and wired it Blackto gold terminal,white to the silver terminal,and the red to the ground terminal
Oh, my gosh! Do not under any circumstances touch this switch in any manner while the breaker is on. Connecting the red to the ground terminal is about as ill-informed of a move as they come, and is a pretty good suicide attempt.

Make new friends!! This one is trying to get you killed!!!
 
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Old 12-07-04, 03:50 PM
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Talking

Thanks trinitron,that sounds exactly like what i need to know.

John,yeah,your right. thats why i think he called me. I told him "time out" keep the breaker off till i could get some expert opinions.

Thanks again. i will post back when i see him next and WE put the right switch and wiring in.
 
  #7  
Old 12-07-04, 04:22 PM
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A red wire NEVER EVER goes to a ground terminal. It is probably one of the travelers in a 3-way switch set-up.
 
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Old 12-16-04, 06:19 PM
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Thumbs up

Just afollow-up to my question. Installed a 3-way switch and everything is o.k. now
Thanks to all who answered my plea.


Merry Christmas
 
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