CHANGING CEILING LIGHT FIXTURE

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  #1  
Old 02-12-01, 10:16 AM
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Angry

Just tried to change ceiling fixture in family room for wife. - no light. pulled down ugly old square light fixture(which worked). found a recessed can behind it. so somebody before me had changed out an "eyeball" (which I had found in my garage earlier and wondered where it came from). so whoever hooked up the "ugly square light" just left the "can" in place and removed the guts of the eyeball fixture. I assumed this is okay, is it? anyway the power comes via 2 wires black and white inside armored cable. there is no ground wire to be found. so I just hooked black to black and white to white when putting in new fixture and was left holding a ground wire from the fixture. I found a mounting screw for the can and put ground there - assuming that the armored cable must have been used for ground. any way, put breaker back on threw switch and .... nothing! but all other lights on circuit work. and checked bulb in other fixture it works - what happened?
 
  #2  
Old 02-12-01, 11:00 AM
J
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Sounds like you did everything right. I would test the original black & white for voltage before I went nuts looking for a problem. Once you know you have power with switch on of course, you restrict the area of your search for where things went wrong. If you don't have a volt meter Home Depot carries one for $9.94 by A.W. Sperry, a top name brand. I suppose that by some freak coincedence your light switch could have died the same day you decided to toss that ugly square fixture.

As far as leaving the can in the ceiling, as long as it forms a fully enclosed metal area for your terminations I suppose it qualifies as a junction box. The rule is that all terminations must be done in a metallic or approved plastic box, which provides access to the terminations.

Hope that helps.

Juice
 
  #3  
Old 02-12-01, 11:47 AM
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Arrow

HEY JUICE,
THANKS FOR THE SPEEDY REPLY! I DO STILL HAVE SOME Q'S THOUGH. FIRST HOW WOULD THE CIRCUIT LOSE VOLTAGE IF IT WAS JUST WORKING MINUTES BEFORE WITH THE OLD FIXTURE? ALSO, COULD IT BE THAT SOMEHOW THE NEW FIXTURE IS A LEMON? HOW COULD i TEST THAT? FROM MY ORIGINAL POSTING: DO I UNDERSTAND GROUNDING CORRECTLY (IT WOULD HAVE NO BEARING ON THE FIXTURE WORKING OR NOT)? IS THERE A WAY TO TEST FOR GROUND? LASTLY IS IT POSSIBLE THAT I DID CROSS THE WIRES AND FOR SOME REASON THE WHITE IS THE HOT WIRE? WHAT WOULD HAPPEN IF YOU CROSSED THOSE WIRES? - NOTHING OR SOMETHING BAD?
 
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Old 02-12-01, 12:58 PM
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Q: FIRST HOW WOULD THE CIRCUIT LOSE VOLTAGE IF IT WAS JUST WORKING MINUTES BEFORE WITH THE OLD FIXTURE?

A: No easy answer. But perhaps your work jiggled a wire loose.

Q: ALSO, COULD IT BE THAT SOMEHOW THE NEW FIXTURE IS A LEMON?

A: Perhaps.

Q: HOW COULD i TEST THAT?

A: Hook it up somewhere else. Or do what Juice said and test the wires.

Q: DO I UNDERSTAND GROUNDING CORRECTLY (IT WOULD HAVE NO BEARING ON THE FIXTURE WORKING OR NOT)?

A: You are correct.

Q: IS THERE A WAY TO TEST FOR GROUND?

A: Yes, but let's solve this problem first.

Q: LASTLY IS IT POSSIBLE THAT I DID CROSS THE WIRES AND FOR SOME REASON THE WHITE IS THE HOT WIRE?

A: Yes, but not really likely.

Q: WHAT WOULD HAPPEN IF YOU CROSSED THOSE WIRES? - NOTHING OR SOMETHING BAD?

A: The fixture would still work, but it just wouldn't be quite as safe.
 
  #5  
Old 02-14-01, 07:54 AM
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Problem solved - I am an idiot. I went back to pull apart my work and discovered that the black wire had broken off inside the wirenut. rewired and it works fine. to juicehead and John Nelson I'm sorry I wasted your time, but I do appreciate the help and the answers to all my questions - I learned alot. thanks.
JDUFFM
 
  #6  
Old 02-14-01, 08:09 AM
J
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Hey, stuff happens. How were you to know the wire broke off out of sight. Don't feel you wasted anybody's time, either. We stop in to see how folks are doing and what questions/problems we can help to resolve because we feel like it, and I personally get a sense of satisfaction when I learn that everything came out alright. Glad everything came out all right. For you, as with all of us, you learned a cause-and-effect which might just save you troubleshooting time in the future, and even allow you to advise others some day. (I guess we call that "live and learn".) Good luck.

Juice
 
 

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