Wall Switch Bypassed?


Old 01-31-11, 01:04 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 7
Question Wall Switch Bypassed?

I'm trying to fix a problem in my girlfriend's house that has me stumped. She has a ceiling fan/light fixture that is controlled by a single-pole wall switch. According to her, with the switch in the ON position, there was a slight noise and wisp of smoke from behind the switch plate. The breaker stayed on. After that, the light remains on and the switch will not turn it off.

I tried replacing the switch, which had no effect. In fact, disconnecting one leg from the switch had no effect, either, which indicates that the circuit is being completed somewhere else and the switch is bypassed. I think there's a short somewhere but I'm not sure how to proceed.

Any ideas?
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Old 01-31-11, 01:23 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Near Lansing, Michigan
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Has there been any picture-hanging or similar activity in the area that may have put a nail through a cable? Does the light go off when you switch off the breaker?
Old 01-31-11, 01:31 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 7
Nope, no activity that would have pierced the wiring. I didn't try the breaker but I'll check.


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