Need help with wiring a light switch

Reply

  #1  
Old 11-29-11, 10:22 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 1
Need help with wiring a light switch

Do-it-your-selfer here with a problem that has me stumped. I have an overhead light that is constantly being left on when no one is around so I wanted to install a timer instead of the switch.

I cannot, for the life of me, figure out this wiring mess. There are three cables coming into the box, all with a copper, white, and black wire.

Here are my assumptions to this point: Bare copper=ground, white=neutral, black=load. I also am assuming that the 3 different cables represent the 1) power incoming, 2)the power outgoing (there are other things on the circuit downstream), and 3)power up to the light.

Here are my questions: Are my above assumptions right? How in the world do I figure out what wire is incoming, outgoing, or to the light itself? How do I wire this so that the power is constant downstream whether the switch is on or not?

I have tried wiring it every conceivable way with no luck. Any help would be GREATLY appreciated.

This is not a great pic, but it may help:

http://img534.imageshack.us/img534/9564/27529718.jpg

Jason in Texas
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 11-29-11, 11:32 PM
Member
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 1,312
That picture is too small for me to see anything...

Did the original switch have 2 connections?

If yes, did you disconnect any other connections other than those two connections to the switch?

If yes, do you remember how it all goes back together - did you take a picture of how the wires went - label the wires?
 
  #3  
Old 11-30-11, 04:44 AM
pcboss's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Maryland
Posts: 14,361
Without a tester you can cap two blacks together and either the light will come on or the power will go downstream. This may take several tries. Make all connections with the power off.

Leave all the whites and bares spliced.
 

Last edited by pcboss; 11-30-11 at 08:25 AM.
  #4  
Old 11-30-11, 07:09 AM
Member
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 6,280
Switch Connections

Without a tester you can cap two blacks together and either the light will come on or the power will go downstream. Make all connections with the power off.
This assumes one of the connected blacks is the power coming in. If this is not the case, nothing will happen.

When replacing a switch, only disconnect the switch wires. Leave all other connections intact. I know; hindsight is 20-20.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes
'