1 switch, 3 lights - only two work


Old 10-10-06, 06:45 PM
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1 switch, 3 lights - only two work

ok...i have 1 switch in my bathroom. It controls an overhead light and two lamps on each side of the sink. When flipped on the overhead light works and one of the lamps work. I looked at the wires of the lamp that does not work - 1 white, 1 black - thats it!

I turned the switch on and used a volt detector on the lamp not working. The white wire: beep. The black wire: no beep.

I then turned the switch off and repeated. White wire: beep. Black wire: beep.

Either way the light bulb will not light. I figured it could be a socket problem, so maybe i could wire a new one in. But shouldn't both wires be inactive when i turn the switch off?
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Old 10-10-06, 07:14 PM
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 995
That's the wrong kind of tester to definitively test for present voltage when something's not working. They are prone to false alarms. You need a solenoid-type, like a Wiggy or Vol-Con for best results, but anything that puts a load across the circuit in question, like an analog meter will also work.
Old 10-10-06, 07:28 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: North of Boston, MA.
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Did you recently change the bulb? Did you try another NEW one?
If so with the switch OFF, Pry the center tab up a bit.
Better still shut OFF the ckt breaker/fuse.

If still no good results.

Shut OFF the ckt brkr/fuse, and open and reterminate the wires/connections in the working fixture.

if only 2 wires in that fixture, then you will have to open the overhead fixture and do the same TO ALL connections.


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