switch outlet combo

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  #1  
Old 05-20-12, 05:10 PM
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switch outlet combo

OK...I have a gangbox that has an outlet and an on/off switch. Its for my pool pump. The switch in the box wasnt responding to the switch on the plate, so I opted to replace them all. I find myself a little baffled about wiring them back up. I have 14-3 cable coming from tghe wall. In one box I have a duel receptacle and an on/off switch. so...red white black and copper. I know that the black and another black from a pigtail go into the switch. Thats where it gets fuzzy. If I have to I will get an electrician, but im think somebody out there can help me out...Thanks
 
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Old 05-20-12, 05:43 PM
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It helps if we know the wiring on both ends and if power comes in at the switch or the load.

The switch in the box wasnt responding to the switch on the plate
What doest that mean? What are you calling a plate?
 
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Old 05-20-12, 05:50 PM
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im sorry. the power comes off a dedicated breaker. it runs into the outlet, then into the switch.by plate , i mean the face plate. the cover of the box has a lever that controls the switch behind it,inside the box. its like it wasnt aligned so it wasnt turning it off. so while i was cleaning the pool, i was constantly pulling the plug to kill the pump.
 
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Old 05-20-12, 06:34 PM
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believe me. most things electrical i leave to the pros. i just thought that replacing this would be easier. i have wire coi.g from a 20 amp breaker. so through the wall is cable with a black,red,white and bare copper wire along with some insulation. i have a box, that has a faceplate with a circle for the switch and next to it is room for a duel 3 pronged receptacle. i need to wire the receptacle and then go into a wire nut of spliced wires then into the switch.
 
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Old 05-20-12, 07:22 PM
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this is what i have inside one box
 
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Old 05-20-12, 07:28 PM
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How many whites in the box? Is there a two conductor cable (black, white, bare) in addition to the three conductor cable (black, red, white, bare).
 
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Old 05-20-12, 07:31 PM
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It sounds like you want to have the switch control the receptacle. Is that right? And, if so, would you like to control just one half of the duplex receptacle, or both of the receptacles?
 
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Old 05-20-12, 07:33 PM
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there is only a small piece of white and a small piece of black. I know the 2 black wires went to the switch,. ! from the 3 conductor cable and the 2nd from a splice from a wire nut that also had a white and a bare copper
 
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Old 05-20-12, 07:39 PM
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2nd from a splice from a wire nut that also had a white and a bare copper
A white should never be connected to a bare. Please show us a picture of the wiring in the box and answer Nash's questions.
 
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Old 05-20-12, 07:45 PM
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I really only need the switch to control one of the receptacles. The one the pump is plugged into. And I have no pics available of the wiring in the box. This is why im in such a pickle. Perhaops Im mistaken about the bare copper wire being in the wire nut, but there was a wire nut with bundled wires. 1 was white and another black. approx 5" long.
 
  #11  
Old 05-20-12, 07:52 PM
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there is just the 3 conductor wire pulled through the back of a 2 device gangbox through the center knock out.
 
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Old 05-20-12, 08:00 PM
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there is just the 3 conductor wire pulled through the back of a 2 device gangbox through the center knock out.
So you have a red wire, black wire, white wire, and bare wire , correct? Is this on a single pole or double pole breaker? What you are saying just doesn't make sense but perhaps the answers to these questions can help.

Background if this is just a receptacle with one side switched I would expect to see a 2-conductor cable but you are saying 3-conductor.
 
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Old 05-20-12, 08:24 PM
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A set of wires in a sheath is a cable. In designating cables, the ground wire is usually not counted; only the current-carrying conductors are counted. For example, a cable with 1 line feed, 1 neutral and 1 ground wire, all of which are #12 AWG, is identified as a 12-2 cable.

All that is needed to have the switch in this box control either half, or both halves, of the duplex receptacle is a complete circuit. 1 line feed and 1 neutral. A ground wire is needed for safety.

What do you want the switch to do? What wires are in the single cable entering the box?
 
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Old 05-21-12, 03:17 AM
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i just want power to the receptacle so o can plug my pump in and the ability to switch it off when i back flush it. in the single cable is a black, a red, a white and a bare copper.
 
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Old 05-21-12, 03:37 AM
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some background...this box was working fine for 15 years prior to me buying the house. i just wanted to replace it, like so many other things i have as a new home owner. usually i just pay close attention while disconnecting and reconnect the same way. but tbis configuration was a little confusing.
 
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Old 05-21-12, 04:36 AM
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and it's a single pole breaker
 
  #17  
Old 05-21-12, 05:58 AM
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Using multimeter give us the following voltage readings:
Red>Black
Red>White
Black>White
White>Ground
Black>Ground
Red>Ground
 
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Old 05-22-12, 10:40 AM
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as I am not sure what you're talking about, I believe it's time to find an electrician
 
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Old 05-22-12, 04:17 PM
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an incredibly relavant fact, i failed to mention, as I just realized. coming from the breaker, the white is wrapped in green tape and the red is wrapped in white tape. so in effect...I have a green a white a black and a bare copper wire in the cable.
 
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Old 05-23-12, 04:42 PM
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nothing??? ok then...Thanks anyhooo
 
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Old 05-23-12, 05:11 PM
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I just realized. coming from the breaker, the white is wrapped in green tape and the red is wrapped in white tape. so in effect...I have a green a white a black and a bare copper wire in the cable.
This is actually confusing. Wires that small can be re-purposed and re-designated when they are in a cable but, so far as I know, nothing you have requires two grounded electrode conductors, which is what a green wire and a bare wire should both be. In addition, re-designating a wire from an ungrounded conductor (red) to a grounded conductor (white) makes no sense when there's already a designated neutral (aka, an ungrounded conductor) in the cable. If it's code compliant, which I doubt.

I suspect you haven't heard anything more because you said you couldn't answer Ray's request for voltage readings and were planning to call an electrician. That's probably a good solution, especially with the re-designated wiring you've described in this post.
 
  #22  
Old 05-23-12, 08:11 PM
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Thanks again, everyone. It seemed like it shouldve been an easy fix, but the wires have indeed been redesignated. I did get a multimeter, but was uncertain how to take the readings that ray asked for, and I guess I felt ignorant to ask further direction. In this instance though, im convinced the best plan of action is to bring in a pro. I so appreciate each and every moderator and contributer to this site. Its always my go
to guy. Thanks. Dan
 
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