no lights


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Old 08-24-08, 01:00 AM
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no lights

I'm new to this..pls bear with me
I changed a faulty 2 way light switch in my bathroom, and
now I have no lights in my bedroom, 2nd washroom nor my daughter's bedroom. All the plugs(outlets) work fine. I have double checked all the breakers...help
 
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Old 08-24-08, 04:08 AM
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Welcome to the forums! Since there is no "2way" switch, I am assuming you replaced a single pole single throw (SPST) regular light switch. How many wires were there to the switch? Did you replace the wires exactly like they came off? Is there an adjacent receptacle to this switch? Sorry for all the questions, but we have to draw pictures for our brains to work.
 
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Old 08-24-08, 06:37 AM
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Do the bedroom lights work when the bathroom switch is on?
 
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Old 08-24-08, 07:25 AM
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Had a customer once with an almost identical problem except it was a neighbor that did her the favor of changing the light switch. The previous installer instead of pigtailing certain wires used both the back stab and screws as a way to connect together two wires. Neighbor when he swapped the switch out didn't realize it was absolutely necessary to keep the wires paired together. Just put them on randomly.
 
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Old 08-24-08, 08:02 AM
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light switch

first thing you should do is to take a voltage meter to the wire. there should be red and black leads (it really doesnt matter for this purpose) but take the black lead and put it on your ground wire,aka bare copper wire. then with the other (red) lead put it to each of the wires that came off of the old switch. until your meter reads 120 or if you have "wiggys" it vibrates.(with the power on,making sure to be careful and not touch the wires or anything). once you have found the wire that reads 120v now turn off the power and the rest can be done "dead." you, now know your feed to the switch, your next quest is to find if (given you have a combine total of 3 colored wires) one of the other two wires is a feed out or controlled at the switch. a way to try is you have 3 terminals on the switch right? a ground(green color screw) and two brass colored screws. hook the ground wire to the green screw. and take the wire that you got the 120v reading off of earlier and put screw it down under one of the brass screws. then try putting the other wires one by one on the other brass screw making sure to cap off what you are not using at the time. make sure not to put the green wire(aka bare copper wire) on any of the brass screws otherwise you will have a direct short.KEEP IN MIND WHEN I SAY 120V IT COULD MEAN ANYTHING FROM 110V-125V IT VARIES NO HOUSEHOLD IS THE SAME.
 
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Old 08-24-08, 01:20 PM
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Originally Posted by chandler View Post
Welcome to the forums! Since there is no "2way" switch, I am assuming you replaced a single pole single throw (SPST) regular light switch. How many wires were there to the switch? Did you replace the wires exactly like they came off? Is there an adjacent receptacle to this switch? Sorry for all the questions, but we have to draw pictures for our brains to work.
Thanks to all of you for your replies.....there are 2 wires to the switch..2 greys...replaced exactly and the bathroom exhaust fan switch is adjacent.
 

Last edited by killfish; 08-24-08 at 02:12 PM. Reason: misinformation
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Old 08-24-08, 01:23 PM
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Originally Posted by pcboss View Post
Do the bedroom lights work when the bathroom switch is on?
No it does not work....Could the breaker be at fault? BTW the replaced switch works beautifully.
 
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Old 08-24-08, 01:36 PM
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There are three wires to the switch, but now tell us about all the other wires in the box.
 
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Old 08-24-08, 02:03 PM
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Gentlemen..a huge apology...let me elaborate...there are 4 sets of elec. cables coming into the box. All the white wires are maretted together. out of 1 cable a grey wire is conn to the light switch. The remaining 3 grey wires all go to fan switch...1 at top, 1 at bottom and the last one is attached by the bottom screw and is then jumpered to the bottom of the light switch...all copper wires are grounded to back of box


FOUND IT......don't exactly know what was wrong...however what Ray 2047 wrote awakened a brain cell. I pulled everything apart and put it back s l o w l y again....
Thanks to all...Thanks ray..killfish out.
 

Last edited by killfish; 08-24-08 at 02:38 PM. Reason: update
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Old 08-24-08, 02:10 PM
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sorry for the misinformation...kf
 
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Old 08-24-08, 03:14 PM
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I sketched out a map based on your wire numbers and colors description and what is attached to what. It sounds like all makes sense as is. That they are all hooked up correctly, the way my drawing shows it all. My drawing is very easy to follow for me.

I drew 4 sets of gray and white wires paralleling each other coming down from above.

The one I drew on the right I have as your incoming power feed and neutral.

The gray wire in it I have hooked to the bottom of your fan switch. Then another gray wire from my 3rd set of wires connects up to that very same connection and would send power to the lights in the other room that does not work.

Then I have a jumper wire also hooked up to that same bottom connection of the fan switch (making that a hot 3-wire junction), and jumps over to the light switch, making that hot always, as well.


Then I have your 2nd set gray wire coming out the top of the fan switch, and would go to your fan (a resistor), and coming back through the white neutral in your box.

Then I have your final 4th gray wire coming to the top of your bathroom light switch. Since I already stated the bottom jumper gray wire is also from the hot feed, that means you send power out the switch, into the light (a resistor) and back into the box via the white wire from that set.

This whole drawing makes sense as explained and I see nothing wrong. So now the problem is in figuring how you lost power on wire set #3. My drawing would show this all on 1 circuit. Therefore, a tripped breaker would not even be your bad cause since you already said that your new bathroom light switch works.

You never said if your bathfan works, I do not believe. I see as a possible weak spot being the 3-wire hot junction hookup at the bottom of the fan switch. Tell us if that fan works and also how all 3 BOTTOM wires are hooked to that switch? I am wondering if the main hot feed gray wire there is wrapped around the screw, as well as the jumper wire to the bottom of the light switch, and that 3rd gray wire down there is backstabbed and something is wrong in the fan switch (used as your hot feed junction) that there is no connection with that back stab - as being the cause of that circuit's lost power. You might have someone look at the lights in the other room while you jiggle that backstabbed wire.

Also, I hope you are certain that tied into that hot 3-wire hookup on the bottom of the fan switch (at least the way I mapped everything out) that that does not first go to say a GFCI'd outlet somewhere that got tripped. Although I can't imagine an electrician putting a bathfan, lights, AND GFCI on same circuit. But I just have to ask so we are not chasing our tails.

Also, confirm if the switch for the lights in the room without lights working is both a good switch and if there is power getting to it or not -and that you have tried to turn on that switch! If you do not know how to find that out(about the testing), just ask.
 
 

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