new wiring blowing fuse

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  #1  
Old 02-14-07, 07:37 AM
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new wiring blowing fuse

Hi, I would really appreciate some help with this:
Our recently bought house already had additional lighting in kitchen with switches in rows on a huge service duct. Power came from a wall socket cable spur to 1st switch which was linked to the next etc.

I made the service duct much smaller, thought I'd rewired the same as existing but blew fuse in consumer unit, so obviously not linked the switches correctly.

Thought I'd simplify it by leading the cable from the wall socket to a junction box and leading a seperate cable from the junction box to each switch.

I used red, black and earth from wall socket to junction box, then earth from junction box to light switch box, red from junction box to L1 at switch, black to common. Then red from appliance to L1 at switch, black to common earth to earth in switch box.

Switched mains back on, blew fuse in consumer unit again.

Thanks for any help, sincerely,

Rich
 
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  #2  
Old 02-14-07, 07:57 AM
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You may need to clarify a few of your terms for us Yanks:
Service Ducts
Socket Cable Spur
Consumer Unit
 
  #3  
Old 02-14-07, 08:17 AM
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terms clarified

Sorry Thiggy,

Service duct - no electical significance- just a floor to ceiling plywood box to hide pipework, cables etc. It took a lage chunk out (2ft. x 2 1/2ft of our small kitchen.

Socket cable spur - just a cable connected to the wiring of a wall socket (rather than the lighting circuit) to provide power for (in our case) 4 separetely switched lights and a fan.

Thanks for your trouble,

Rich
 
  #4  
Old 02-14-07, 08:40 AM
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I'm confused by your terms L1 and common on the switch. Is there two terminals or four on your switches? If there are two terminals then the common wire would not connect to the switch. I think you are creating a short through the switch to hot and common. I think what you need is black to black in the switch box and red power and red apliance to the two screws on your switch.
How many switches control the lights? Is there a second switch that also controls the lights? If there is then you have what we call a three way setup. I think you would call it a two way setup.
 
  #5  
Old 02-14-07, 08:55 AM
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Make sure that the hot wire is the one that goes through the switch. I'm not sure if that is the red one or the black one in your case.
 
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Old 02-14-07, 09:36 AM
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You might do better in a UK group

There is a Usenet newsgroup at free.uk.diy.home that may be of more help then we can be here. The folks there may be able to direct you to a DIY group specifically for UK electrical problems.

For what it is worth the old UK color code is black for the grounded current carrying conductor. The European Union color code is blue for the grounded current carrying conductor. The last ime I got to work with electricians from the UK they said it was rare to have more than one phase brought into a single family detached home so the voltage throughout the home is generally 220 volts. With the EU standardization process ten years further along that may well have changed.
 
  #7  
Old 02-14-07, 09:43 AM
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thankyou racraft and joed.
racraft, I'm a bit confused, please read my reply to joed below.

joed, there are three terminals on the switch plus one for ground. The other 3 are L1, neutral, L2. I understand L2 is used for carrying a yellow wire to another switch for 3 way operation. But that is not the case here, simply one switch to one light. By the way, red = live, black = neutral.

Rich
 
  #8  
Old 02-14-07, 09:50 AM
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That's fine, you have what are called (here anyway) three way switches. They can be used as regular two way (on/off) switches.

You still do not connect the neutral to the switch. Put the two hot wires on the switch. Try connecting them to the neutral and one of the L1 or L2 terminals.
 
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Old 02-14-07, 09:58 AM
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Unless we have experience/education on European wiring I truly feel none of us is qualified to help here. By guessing, IMO we would be giving a disservice by doing so.
 
  #10  
Old 02-14-07, 09:59 AM
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You do not have the black (common) attached to the switch in any way, do you? Onlly to the other black wires?
 
  #11  
Old 02-14-07, 11:30 AM
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thankyou all

thankyou to all who took the time and trouble to reply.

I'll try and find that UK group for the future - I think racraft and aq guy have got me on the right road because I thought the blacks had to connect to common when I think what you're saying is that they just have to connect to each other, bypassing the switch altogether, so that's what I'm going to try.

I'll let you know how this works out, though it will be Friday, maybe Saturday before I get the chance to do the work.

Kind regards

Rich
 
  #12  
Old 02-14-07, 12:59 PM
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I think you might do well to just get rid of the three-way switches and go with standard two-way switches, they are dirt cheap. The three-ways can be used for two-way circuits, but are trickier to wire properly, as you have found.
 
  #13  
Old 02-14-07, 01:12 PM
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Why not just figure out how to wire what he has properly, or bring someone in who can?
If he has a 3-way set up now I would recommend keeping it.

Also, what is a "2-way switch"?
 
  #14  
Old 02-14-07, 01:56 PM
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"Why not just figure out how to wire what he has properly, or bring someone in who can?"

He doesn't need three-way switches. The extra screw marked "common" confused him. Since he, with our help, has figured this out, it's possible he COULD also work out how to properly wire them. Maybe he has. But I just suggested doing away with them as an alternative. At this point I am confident he can properly and safely complete his project on his own, either way.

"If he has a 3-way set up now I would recommend keeping it."

He said clearly "separetely switched lights and a fan." No three-way setup, just three-way switches used where not necessary. Apparently the switches are ganged up together on the utility chase, wouldn't make much sense for two of them to be a three-way setup.

"Also, what is a "2-way switch"?["

OK, pardon me, "toggle switch".
 
  #15  
Old 02-14-07, 03:53 PM
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A two way switch in UK is what we N.A. call a three way switch.
 
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