Help - FLood Light Fixture - NO BLACK WIRE - Only white

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  #1  
Old 04-19-11, 07:44 AM
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Help - FLood Light Fixture - NO BLACK WIRE - Only white

Hello Everyone

Might someone be able to help or offer advice?

I am replacing 2 of 4 outdoor dual-head floodlight fixtures that are located under the eaves of the 2nd floor of the house (2 in the front, 2 in the back).

All 4 are on the same switch. When I went to replace one of them, I noticed there are no black wires. There are 2 white that connect to one head and another 2 white that connect to the other head.

The house was built in 1966 and I was told that whoever installed the lighting must, obviously, be using a neutral as a hot. My first thought is to use a simple voltage detector to determine which wires are hot and which are neutral, since they are all white.

1. Should I be measuring current or voltage or do I simply need to determine which wires are hot?

2. Is this even ok for it to be this way if, once determined, I simply use a Sharpie to color the hot wire coating black?

I apologize if this a rudimentary question, but since it concerns electricity, I prefer to approach anything like this with caution.

Thank you much for your help.

-B
 
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Old 04-19-11, 08:39 AM
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Do the wires come in through a conduit or are they part of a cable assembly? Are there also bare or green ground wires?
 
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Old 04-19-11, 08:50 AM
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I'm pretty sure it's conduit. It's hard to tell because the wires are fed through a 3"-4" hold that was cut in the soffet.

No green (but I do have it on the new fixture).

I appreciate any help. Please let me know if you need additional information.

Thank you.

-B
 
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Old 04-19-11, 08:56 AM
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because the wires are fed through a 3"-4" hold[sic] that was cut in the soffet
Are you saying there is no box? If there is a box does it look like there is a pipe coming into the box with a nut on it?
 
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Old 04-19-11, 09:10 AM
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It's hard to tell. I'll will have to take a closer look when I get home tonight. I can't get a real good look at anything inside. The only reason I have to believe there is a box is that I can see some metal with a hole in it that looks like it could be used to secure the grounding wire. I'll find out.
 
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Old 04-19-11, 09:16 AM
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I'll see if I can post a picture of what the problem looks like.
 
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Old 04-19-11, 10:23 AM
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