need help wiring a switch, thx.

Reply

  #1  
Old 09-24-05, 09:28 PM
calbert
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
need help wiring a switch, thx.

I need help in wiring two "switch/receptacle combo" plugs in one box, each one to operate a different fixture, but with the outlet portion being on the whole time. I only have two wires coming into the box, a black and white. This is in a half bath, one switch will operate the ceiling light, the other an exhaust fan. I need those switches to be independent of each other, but with both of their outlets being on the whole time. thank you.
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 09-24-05, 09:44 PM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
It can't be done with the existing wires. Do you have the ability to add more wires (you'll need several more)? Is this a new bathroom, or one being renovated? Will the fan and light be part of the same unit, or will they be separate units? Do either one or both currently exist, or will either one or both be a new installation?
 
  #3  
Old 09-24-05, 09:54 PM
calbert
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
The fan and light are separate units. This is (was supposed to be) a small remodel. I can add more wires (IN the bathroom only, meaning from the wall switch to the fixture/s, it is conduit.) Both units currently exist but the exhaust fan was controlled by the plug in the fan housing. The old fan was mounted on the side wall, the new one will be mounted on the ceiling. there is conduit running from the wall switch to the ceilling light, from there it is a two wire flexible whip running to the old exhaust fan, so relocating it wont be a problem, I would just like to be able to operate the fan from its own switch. There is no bathtub/shower in this room, so the small fan will mainly be used for air circulation/odor control. The old setup was one single pole switch to operate the light and fan (with the fan mainly staying un plugged) and one receptacle that was always one. please advise.
 

Last edited by calbert; 09-24-05 at 10:01 PM. Reason: added info
  #4  
Old 09-24-05, 10:11 PM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
You said that you have "two wires coming into the box, a black and white." Are you talking about the switch box on the wall? Does this switch currently control the light?

Please shut off the breaker and describe the wiring at the existing light.
 
  #5  
Old 09-24-05, 11:12 PM
calbert
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
the two wires coming into the box are at the wall box with a switch that does control the light. The previous tenants attempted to upgrade but ran out of time and now I would like to finish it. They said that there used to be a single pole switch and an outlet in that one box. right now there is just one combo switch and a blank space. the current wiring configuration for that wall box is: the black wire (main power) is attached to the top right screw of the switch/receptacle combo, there is a black wire attached to the top left screw going up to the ceiling light box, it is directly attached to the two black wires of the ceiling light, the two white wires of the ceiling light are directly attached to a white wire in the ceiling box, which runs down the wall and is pigtailed to the bottom left screw of the outlet combo and to the existing white wire in the wall box. that appears to be working as intended, the outlet is always on, and the switch controls the ceiling light. the exhaust fan electrical which runs into that ceiling light box is not hooked up, it is one black, one white, one ground. They previous tenants said they unhooked it a year ago because they didnt want the exhaust fan turing on every time the light was turned on, and they did not want to always being controlling the exhaust fan from the plug in the fan motor housing. I would like to finish their work which appears to be just hooking up another combo switch to the exhaust fan, so that if need be, the fan can run with the light off. it is a half bath (no tub/shower) so the small fan will just be used for air circulation/ odor control. From the ceiling box to the wall box there are just two wires one black, one white running through conduit. from the ceiling box to the exhaust fan there is that flexible whip described above. I appreciate your patience in this situation.
 
  #6  
Old 09-25-05, 08:37 AM
calbert
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
anyone know how this can be done?
 
  #7  
Old 09-25-05, 09:07 AM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Central New York State
Posts: 13,973
Please describe this better. Are you the owner? A tenant?

You need a new wire from the junction box to the new device.
 
  #8  
Old 09-25-05, 10:56 AM
calbert
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
I am the new owner of an old condo.
 
  #9  
Old 09-25-05, 11:01 AM
calbert
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
How do I wire a new switch/receptacle combo at the wall? In order, it goes wall switch, ceiling light, exhaust fan. From the wall switch it is metal conduit to the ceiling light/junction box. From the ceiling light/junction box to the exhaust fan, it is a flexible metal whip with two wires, one black, one white, one ground.
 
  #10  
Old 09-25-05, 11:06 AM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
I only have two wires coming into the box, a black and white
a white wire in the ceiling box, which runs down the wall and is pigtailed to the bottom left screw of the outlet combo and to the existing white wire in the wall box
Your information is contradictory. First you said that there is only two wires (one black and one white), and the second post describes three (one black and two white). I suspect that neither description is correct.

So give us the real story. How many wires come into the switch box? Be complete.
 
  #11  
Old 09-25-05, 11:55 AM
calbert
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
Sorry for the confusion. At the wall box there are two wires entering the box from the bottom (one black and one white) there are also two wires entering the wall box from the top (one black and one white) those two wires that come into the wall box from the top are currently attached at the other end to the ceiling light up at the ceiling junction box.
 
  #12  
Old 09-25-05, 12:03 PM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
Okay, then the situation is entirely different.

You only need one more wire, from the switch box to the light box. It should be the same gauge as the other wires, and can be any color other than white, gray, bare or green. Since you have conduit, you can just feed it through the existing conduit. Post back when you have it run and we'll provide the details on how to hook everything up.

Since this is a bathroom, make sure your that the receptacle part of the switch/receptacle combos are GFCI protected. If the circuit is not already GFCI protected somewhere upstream, then make sure at least one of the combos includes a GFCI receptacle. When you post back, identify all the connection points on each combo (since different models are wired slightly differently).
 
  #13  
Old 09-25-05, 02:59 PM
calbert
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
I have another black wire running from the wall box up to the ceiling box, through the conduit. I have placed a bit of masking tape on each end of the new black wire to help me identify it. the receptacle combos I am using are Pass & Seymour TM 818. If you are looking at the back side (switch on top of outlet on front side) there are two black screws on the left side, one towards the top, one towards the bottom. There is a brass screw on the top right side, and then a silver screw towards the bottom on the right side not as far down as the black bottom screw is on the left side. There is also a black plastic tab running horizontally through the middle that says "remove tab to split circuit". Still looking at the back of the combo/outlet there is also a green ground screw coming vertically down into the top middle.
 
  #14  
Old 09-25-05, 03:15 PM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
  1. Do not remove the tab on either combo.
  2. Connect the black power feed wire to the top black screw on the first combo.
  3. Connect a black jumper wire between the bottom black screw on one comb to the bottom black screw on the other combo.
  4. Use a wire nut to connect both grounding wires to two bare pigtails.
  5. Connect each bare pigtail to one of the green screws.
  6. Connect the black wire to the light to the brass screw on one combo.
  7. Connect the black wire to the fan to the brass screw on the other combo.
  8. Use a wire nut to connect the two white wires to two white pigtails.
  9. Connect one white pigtail to the silver screw on one combo.
  10. Connect the other white pigtail to the silver screw on the other combo.
  11. Carefully repack the wires back into the box, being careful not to short out any of the grounding wires against any of the screws.
  12. Install a GFCI circuit breaker in the panel for this circuit, or install a GFCI receptacle somewhere upstream from this box.
Don't plan to use a hairdryer in one receptacle and something else in the other receptacle at the same time. The circuit won't handle that much load. And assuming that this is a 15-amp circuit, don't buy an 1875-watt or 1800-watt hairdryer. Stick with no more than 1500-watt hairdryers.
 
  #15  
Old 09-25-05, 04:40 PM
calbert
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
Holy damn! Did I sure know how to complicate a simple problem? It's amazing how , now that it is done, everything makes sense and most importantly, works. Thank You for your extreme patience and helpful guidelines. I just hope that this tests my wiring ability and not the response time of the Fire Dept.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes
'