Weekend Electric Project Gone Bad - Help Please

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  #1  
Old 11-27-06, 06:56 AM
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Unhappy Weekend Electric Project Gone Bad - SEE REPLY #6

Need help converting a mid-run receptacle to supply power to a 3way dimmer hooked up to 2 light fixtures

******* please see reply #6 by homeimp18 where diagram added just tonight *********

thanks all u experts !!!!
 

Last edited by homeimp18; 11-27-06 at 04:35 PM. Reason: title change
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  #2  
Old 11-27-06, 08:23 AM
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Need more info. Sounds like you have the lights in series.

Do you want the switches to control the new lights? By leaving the tab on you have totally bypassed the switch at the receptacle. I think that might be what you want.
Tell us all the wire connections you made. We should be able to spot the mistakes.

I think you now have power-junction box a-sw1-sw2 and junction a-L1-L2.
 
  #3  
Old 11-27-06, 08:43 AM
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You must identfy the switch leg that is in the rec. box.
The wire that used to switch the rec. should be removed from the rec. and extended to the lights.

You need to reconstruct how the rec. was originaly.
 
  #4  
Old 11-27-06, 08:43 AM
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Smile Wiring

Joe, thanks for the quick reply... here it is...


* middle of run receptacle wiring: 3 14-2 wires in, pigtailed each color together, pigtail (black, white, grounds) into receptacle; tabs *not* broken

* on the 14-2 wire that *was* between the receptacle and switch1 ( call this wireX ), i cut in half

* I joined here (in a plastic new box) the following: (1) wireX end that goes to the receptacle, (2) the wireX end that goes to switch1.. and (3) a new wireY that is a 14-2 that goes to light1 which chains then ( from light1 ) to light 2. I WIRED THESE 3 WIRES SUCH THAT THE WHITE WIRE THAT GOES WITH SWITCH1 IS HOT... MY WAY OF TRYING TO MAKE THIS JUNCTION BOX BE '3 WAY SWITCH-WIRED'

* I did not disturb the 14-3-1 that goes from switch1 to switch2

This is what i have done.

If this is not good enough i'll have to email a diagram
 
  #5  
Old 11-27-06, 11:11 AM
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You didn't tell me all the wires in your new junction box. They should be like this.

black from receptacle to switch white.
White from receptacle to light white.
Black from switch to black from light.
All grounds together.

If the lights are still dim after this you need to check your light wires. They should all be color for color connected.
 
  #6  
Old 11-27-06, 04:28 PM
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Red face Thanks JoeD and ElectricLee

Guys... thanks a million... but i tried and still stuck.... i rewired to JoeD's suggestion and same symptoms...

So that i'm not wasting any of your time, i went back and created the following total diagram for you guys to inspect if you would be so kind to look one more time.

The Diagram:

14-2 receptacle <---> new_junctionbox <---> 14-3 Switch1

new_junctionbox also has....
^
|
V
14-2 Light1 ( 40w bulb )
^
|
V
14-2 Light2 ( 40w bulb )

14-2 RECEPTACLE:
* is middle-of-run
* where i'm getting the power from
* receptacle wired *with tabs*
* wired with all 3 whites together, all 3 blacks together, all 3 grounds together, pigtailed one white to silver and one black to gold..and ground connected

Inside new_junctionbox it looks like this :

receptacle(black)------switch1(black)
receptacle(white)------Light1(white)
switch1(white)---------Light1(black)
grounds ( a 3 connected together )

switch1 looks like this :
* it a new dimmer i bought that has an on/off switch and a slider to dim lights; it's got 2 red, a green and a black coming out of it
* switch1(green)--------grounds connected to it
* switch1( red left looking from back of switch1 ) ---- receptacle(black)
* switch2( red) ---- switch1( red right looking from back of switch1)
* switch1(white) --- switch2(white)

switch2 looks like this :
* only one 14-3 coming into it
* it's one of those fancy on/off switches where half of it lights * looking from the back of it.... you'll see
* ....... red on top left
* ........black on bottom left
* ........ground on top right ( connect to ground connection )
* ........white on bottom right

I am trying to setup the 2 lights with the 3way dimmer setup so that my wife can use them above her piano while we keep the outlets on walls all working as well.
 
  #7  
Old 11-27-06, 05:15 PM
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you need to make some changes. You didn't tell us you changed the switches as well.
At the junction box connect the power black to the switch white.
Connect the switch white to the light white.
These two changes are required to meet the code. We want switched power to come back on the black wire not the white wire.

At the switch connect the sw1 black (common) to the white wire from the junction box.

Now we need more info to continue.

At the second switch one of the screws is black in color or marked common. Whichever color wire is on that screw needs to connect to the black from the junction box at switch 1. The other two wires from the second switch connect to the two red wires on the dimmer.
 
  #8  
Old 11-27-06, 06:23 PM
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Thanks Joe

Joe,

Please tell me if this new configuration is correct based on your response. Changes are placed within << >> brackets and where i've got questions i put within ?? ?? which are changes affected by your instructions i need to understand... thanks!

modified new_junctionbox :

<< receptacle(black)------switch1(white) >>
?? which white wire in junction box ?? ------ switch1(black)
receptacle(white)------Light1(white)
??what wire connect with now ?? ---------Light1(black)
grounds ( a 3 connected together )

switch1 looks like this :
* it a new dimmer i bought that has an on/off switch and a slider to dim lights; it's got 2 red, a green and a black coming out of it
* switch1(green)--------grounds connected to it
* switch1( red left looking from back of switch1 ) ---- receptacle(black)
* switch2( red) ---- switch1( red right looking from back of switch1)
* switch1(white) --- switch2(white)

switch2 looks like this :
* only one 14-3 coming into it
* it's one of those fancy on/off switches where half of it lights * looking from the back of it.... you'll see
* ....... red on top left
* ........black on bottom left
* ........ground on top right ( connect to ground connection )
* ........white on bottom right

------------------------------------------

switch2 has black on the black screw.. YOU SAID "Whichever color wire is on that screw needs to connect to the black from the junction box at switch 1". Right now, switch2 does *NOT* connect in any way direclty into the junction box.. it goes only to the switch1 now... must i connect switch2 now directly into the junction box ??

YOU SAID ... "The other two wires from the second switch connect to the two red wires on the dimmer.". Joe, i think the answer the question above might clear up what i need to do to change the config on switch2 above.

Thanks a million !

Tom from upstate NY
 
  #9  
Old 11-27-06, 07:47 PM
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I'm not sure I under the first problem with white in junction box so I'll state how it needs to be.

power black from receptacle to white wire to switch 1
Power white from receptacle to white to lights.
Black from switch 1 to light black.

At switch 1 connect white from junction box to dimmer black(common) wire.
Connect black from switch 2 to black from junction box.
connect red and white from switch 2 to the red wires on switch(dimmer) 1. It doesn't which one goes to which red for this part.

The black from switch 2 does not need a new wire to go to the new junction box. It gets there by connecting within switch 1 box to the black going to the junction box.
 
  #10  
Old 11-29-06, 12:17 PM
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Unhappy JoeD.... unfortunately.... i'm back at same symptoms as when i started :(

The electricity seems to be drained proportionally from the receptacles in the wall of my room as i increase the strength of light on my 3-way switched dimmer.

Again, it's a 15A circuit of receptacles where a middle-of-the-run receptacle is tapped into ( set up with all tabs on.. not a switched receptacle ) that goes junction box which we setup per specs above.

I double checked everything.

Why is all the electric going to the light fixtures when i turn the dimmer or the other switch on ? seems like i'm steeling all the electric out of the circuit receptacles in the room.

thanks joe
 
  #11  
Old 11-29-06, 12:23 PM
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Cool

You need to reconstruct how the rec. was originaly.


The more you rearange, the further you get from where you started, and where you want to be.

As best you can, GO BACK to the beginning. Forget the lights for now.
Put the ckt back together and tell us what you have.

Then we start from there. And it should be a gratifying "weekend project".
 
  #12  
Old 11-29-06, 12:35 PM
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You do not have this wired properly. Follow joeds instructions.

Also tell us exactly what you added in addition to the one dimmer.

It seems very likely that you have things wired in series instead of parallel.

Tell us ALL the wiring.
 
  #13  
Old 11-29-06, 12:49 PM
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Was there more than one receptacle controlled by the switches?
Are you sure you cut into the line between the receptacle and the switch and not between two recpetcles? It is beginning to sould like this might be the problem.
 
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