Dimmer switch problem

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  #1  
Old 06-17-12, 08:48 AM
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Dimmer switch problem

Here's a question I'm sure you guys have NEVER gotten (sarcasm). I've searched the forum but to no avail. So here goes:

Taking a dimmer switch OUT and replacing with the regular switch that came with the house (my father in law installed the dimmer switch while I was at training). The light in question is a ceiling fan light with the ceiling fan switch next to it. The light switch had a ground wire, white, black/white striped, and red attached to it. The light switch that came with the house that I am trying to install only has a place for the ground wire and two other wires. Which one do I choose to leave out?

I initially chose to leave out the red wire and the ceiling fan lights didn't turn on, and also the other switch that controls the ceiling fan lights from the kitchen did not work when I did that. For fear of electrocuting myself, I left everything and went to seek help online .

Any help y'all can give me would be much appreciated.
 
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Old 06-17-12, 10:34 AM
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Do you have two white wires wire nutted together in the switch box? A house wire should not be black with white stripe. Are you sure that wasn't part of the dimmer? A picture may help. http://www.doityourself.com/forum/li...-pictures.html
 
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Old 06-17-12, 11:04 AM
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Here's the pictures.

I guess it is not black with white stripes. It's black with white paint on it. Any suggestions?
 
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Old 06-17-12, 11:26 AM
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and also the other switch that controls the ceiling fan lights from the kitchen did not work when I did that.
That is your problem. You have a 3 way between the kitchen and this switch box. You need a 3 way switch.
 
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Old 06-17-12, 11:43 AM
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But I'm replacing the dimmer switch with a switch that came with the house. It should be able to go back the way it was. Shouldn't it?
 
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Old 06-17-12, 12:05 PM
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Sure, it can, but the switches will not work as 3 ways. Likely what they had was the switches were slaved to each other. You could turn on the light only if the kitchen switch was "on" with the dimmer. If the dimmer was in the off position it would not work.

Is the red/black/white (colored black) wires from the same cable?
 
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Old 06-17-12, 01:20 PM
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I'm not sure I understand you fully. The kitchen switch and the living room switch have always worked independently of each other, both before the dimmer switch was installed and after.

The black wire comes coupled with a red wire that runs to the actual fan switch and not the fan light switch. Does this make sense?
 
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Old 06-17-12, 07:22 PM
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Lets back up.

Do you have two switches that both control the fan light?

The black wire comes coupled with a red wire that runs to the actual fan switch and not the fan light switch. Does this make sense?
Sort of. Your saying the black is connected to other blacks, one going to the fan switch and the other going to the fan light switch. Correct?
 
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Old 06-18-12, 09:05 PM
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I initially chose to leave out the red wire and the ceiling fan lights didn't turn on, and also the other switch that controls the ceiling fan lights from the kitchen did not work when I did that...

I'm replacing the dimmer switch with a switch that came with the house. It should be able to go back the way it was. Shouldn't it?
Yes, if you replace the dimmer switch with the same switch, or the same kind of switch, that was there before.

That is a 3-way switch. It will have three terminals in addition to the ground screw. Usually two of the terminals are brass colored and the third is darker. The two traveler wires connect to the two brass screws and the point wire - either line or load - connects to the darker screw.

The 3-way switch will not have ON and OFF molded into the toggle - it will just be smooth.

When you have found or purchased the 3-way switch, we can help you determine which of the wires needs to go to each terminal.
 
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