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Wiring for a Dimmer and a Light Switch to Control Downlights and Ceiling Fan

Wiring for a Dimmer and a Light Switch to Control Downlights and Ceiling Fan


Old 06-13-13, 07:04 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 3
Wiring for a Dimmer and a Light Switch to Control Downlights and Ceiling Fan

I would like to receive some input on how to wire in a new dimmer and downlights.

Here is the before scenario:
The house is located in Southern California and was built in 1959. The bedroom originally had one single pole switch and a ceiling fan. There is a junction box located up in the attic, right next to the access hatch. here is an image of what it looks like and what cables are spliced in there:

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As you can see it's a little crowded in there, but hopefully it makes sense.

Here is the after scenario:

Currently, I replaced the ceiling fan with a new one and added 4 new LED downlights. I wired all the downlights in a daisy chain fashion and all that is left to do is connect them to the power source. For the ceiling fan, I ran a new Romex cable. I also removed the MC cable that runs to the ceiling fan switch. Basically, I am replacing all wiring for the lights and the switches in the bedroom.

I am adding a new switch for the ceiling fan and expanding the switch box to a double size to accommodate a dimmer switch for the downlights. The Romex cable I have is a 14/2.

In summary, starting from the junction box shown above, I am removing all wiring and going from one switch to a new switch and dimmer side-by-side and adding 4 new recessed lights. I need to wire (1) ceiling fan and (1) switch; plus (1) dimmer and connect (4) already wired recessed lights to the power source.

I am also ready to add an additional junction box if necessary. I would like to know the best and most efficient way to finalize all the wiring. Although I do have an idea of how I want to do it, i would like an opinion from someone more knowledgeable.

Please let me know if more information is needed. I appreciate all the help in advance.

NOTE: In the attached picture above, the MC cable for the ceiling fan and the ceiling fan switch (shown on bottom left) is gone and I am running a new Romex cable.

Last edited by PJmax; 06-13-13 at 07:18 PM. Reason: repaired pic link
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Old 06-13-13, 07:20 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northern NJ - USA
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Welcome to the forums.

I fixed your picture link.

Didn't get a chance to study the wiring yet but you could use a 1900 extension ring to give you a little more room in that junction box.
Old 06-18-13, 09:47 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 3
Thumbs up Project Complete

I finished the new wiring last night for the recessed lighting and a ceiling fan, plus an added dimmer to an existing single switch.

Picked up a helpful book called "Wiring Simplified" at Home Depot over the weekend to help me figure out the basics. Best feeling when flipping new lights on for the first time.

Thanks for any efforts or thoughts of putting an answer to this.
Old 06-18-13, 09:51 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 3
Thanks - I used an extension box on top of the existing one to make more room for existing wires and also fit all the new wires. Looks much better now. The only thing I don't know is if having a junction box right next to the attic access is compliant with the code. It was this way when the house was purchased so I didn't attempt to move it, but I read somewhere that there is a minimum distance required between electrical wires/boxes and the access hatch.
Old 06-18-13, 10:41 AM
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: port chester n y
Posts: 2,117
The Wiring Method appears to be Flexible Metal Conduit, Type FMC , and if it's 1/2" trade-size I'll guess the JB is a "size" 4-11/16" .

"If it's not there, it can't go wrong ( or fail )"-- I refer to the furnace-connections in the JB. Better if you can by-pass these connections with a direct circuit from the panel to the furnace with minimal connections. Very unusual and very impractical to have furnace connections in an attic JB "mixed in" with lighting circuit connections.

Hypothetical situation; furnace failure with voltage at the breaker and emergency-switch , but Zero voltage at the furnace = an "open " circuit --- but where?.

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