Trying to figure out where to check for the problem

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  #1  
Old 10-17-13, 08:23 PM
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Trying to figure out where to check for the problem

How are you all doing? I installed a motion light and it didn't work. So I tried turning the light switch on & off that is located right inside of the door to the left of the junction box. So I replaced that light switch to make sure I didn't have any problems from that first, and it still didn't work. So I went outside and replaced the the bottom outlet because it didn't work & old(see image). So I test removed the motion light and tested the wires and the meter shows no activity at all ( I tested it with the light switch on & off). I was wonder where do I start to check for the problem in the fuse box or in another location to get the power live again?

Thanks
 
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  #2  
Old 10-17-13, 08:30 PM
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Tell us about all of the wires in the switch box and how they are connected. Tell us about all the wires in the receptacle box and how they are connections. Pictures may help.
 
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Old 10-17-13, 08:38 PM
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Welcome to the forums!

I was wonder where do I start to check for the problem in the fuse box or in another location to get the power live again?
Do you know that that switch controls the power to the light outlet? If so, check for power at the switch. If not, check for power at the switch and check for continuity between the switch box and the light box.

See Troubleshooting a dead receptacle or light, Basic Terminology & Other info.

So I went outside and replaced the the bottom outlet because it didn't work & old(see image).
The receptacle and the light switch should not be wired together. Do they appear to be?
 
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Old 10-17-13, 08:46 PM
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They are only three wires (White, Black, & Green) and a ground (in the receptacle box, but I'm unsure where they are connected. I loaded a picture with my post, because I was wondering if I have to go to the the attic to find how it is connected to the house.
 
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Old 10-17-13, 08:53 PM
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Do you know that that switch controls the power to the light outlet?
Yes! So I replaced it with a new switch yesterday. I didn't check it for power, but I will!

The receptacle and the light switch should not be wired together. Do they appear to be?
No! They are not wired together, but i wanted to make sure everything was working just in case.
 

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  #6  
Old 10-17-13, 09:36 PM
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I didn't check it for power, but I will!
Let us know what you find.

They are not wired together, but i wanted to make sure everything was working
OK, we only need to focus on the switch and the outlet for the light fixture.
 
  #7  
Old 10-18-13, 08:23 PM
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I checked the light switch, but no power on the switch (See attached pics) I thought this post posted earlier.
 
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Old 10-18-13, 08:54 PM
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In your picture is a three way switch. I see two black wires and one red wire going to the switch. I see red connected to the odd color terminal. I see one black on one of the traveler screws.

I see the other black connected to the ground screw

There should not be a black wire on the ground screw. It should be on the other unused traveler terminal. There should only be a bare wire or green on the switch ground screw.
 
  #9  
Old 10-18-13, 09:23 PM
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I understand! I call myself install the new switch like the old one that was wired 15 years ago was. I test all of the wires, but I still have no power going through them. Even tho its wired wrong, I should still be able to detect power right? Right now my meter shows no power at all.
 
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Old 10-18-13, 09:24 PM
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I could be wrong, but that looks like a SPST (on/off) switch with some funny-colored terminal screws and a black wire on the grounding terminal to me. Does it have ON and OFF molded into the face of the toggle?

How are you testing for power?
 
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Old 10-18-13, 09:27 PM
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I have a strong hunch that that is a three way switch on a three way circuit which means there is a second switch that is also connected to that one. The power may come from that switch.
 
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Old 10-18-13, 09:35 PM
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One of us is right. A picture showing the other side of the switch - or telling us whether it has ON and OFF on the toggle - will clarify which one it is.
 
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Old 10-18-13, 09:36 PM
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How are you testing for power?
I'm testing the power with this instrument:

http://www.southwiretools.com/tools/...do?file_id=221
 
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Old 10-18-13, 09:40 PM
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It does not any on/off on the toggle.
 
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Old 10-18-13, 09:41 PM
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Very nice test instrument A+

Then it is a three way switch and there is another one in that circuit.
 
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Old 10-18-13, 09:54 PM
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Should I have bought a special light switch?
 
  #17  
Old 10-18-13, 10:13 PM
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there is another one in that circuit.
What is the best way to find the other circuit?
 
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Old 10-18-13, 10:16 PM
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I replaced [the old switch] with a new switch yesterday...

It does not any on/off on the toggle...

Should I have bought a special light switch?
You did buy a special switch:
Originally Posted by PJmax
Then it is a three way switch
and PJ wins the bet.

The question now is whether you needed to buy that switch. Is this the only switch for that light location? Where is that red wire coming from?

Nice wiki, but my question was
Originally Posted by Nashkat1
How are you testing for power?
Are you disconnecting all of the black and red wires and testing for 120V from each of them to neutral and to ground?
 
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Old 10-18-13, 10:22 PM
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What is the best way to find the other circuit?
Whoa! Slow down! There is only one circuit, and we're only talking about the part that feeds this light. PJ assumed, because there was a 3-way switch there that there was another switch location in this section of the circuit. Is there, or did you buy the wrong switch by mistake?

Answer the questions I asked earlier and we can go from there.
 
  #20  
Old 10-18-13, 10:34 PM
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Are you disconnecting all of the black and red wires and testing for 120V from each of them to neutral and to ground?
Let me do this first, and I will let you! Thanks!
 

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  #21  
Old 10-19-13, 06:21 AM
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He's using a good tool Ray. It's back in post 13.

Just my thoughts passing thru.....
I had a reply all typed up but this may not be a three way circuit. It could be a a hot leg is carried thru the box and red is switched. That would mean the blacks need to be connected.
 
  #22  
Old 10-19-13, 09:48 AM
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this may not be a three way circuit. It could be a a hot leg is carried thru the box and red is switched. That would mean the blacks need to be connected.
That's my thinking for now too. We'll see as we get more information.

Lutrella, do you still have the switch that you removed? Did it have ON and OFF on the toggle?
 
  #23  
Old 10-19-13, 10:18 AM
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Lutrella, do you still have the switch that you removed?
No!

Did it have ON and OFF on the toggle?
Yes!

Read more: http://www.doityourself.com/forum/el...#ixzz2iBkmatVP
 
  #24  
Old 10-19-13, 10:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Nashkat1
Did it have ON and OFF on the toggle?
Yes!
OK. You need to buy an on/off switch to replace it with. You can return the 3-way switch if you want to - you don't need it.

You should probably wire the new switch the way PJ suggested earlier: Splice the two black wires together. Add a 6" - 8" piece of black wire - a pigtail - the same gauge as the other two wires to that splice. Connect the pigtail to one of the power terminals on the switch. Connect the red wire to the other one. Make another pigtail if you need to to connect the grounds to the switch.

But, before you do the wiring, what did you learn when you tested the black and red wires for 120V AC?
 
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Old 10-19-13, 10:41 AM
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Ok! I will try that! Thanks for all of your help!
 
  #26  
Old 10-19-13, 10:49 AM
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Ok! I will try that!
Not so fast!.....................

Originally Posted by Nashkat1
before you do the wiring, what did you learn when you tested the black and red wires for 120V AC?
 
  #27  
Old 10-19-13, 11:00 AM
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Let me disconnect the wires first!
 
  #28  
Old 10-19-13, 01:23 PM
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Just test with disconnected wires, and no power
 
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  #29  
Old 10-19-13, 01:53 PM
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Just test with disconnected wires, and no power
Reset the breaker. If that doesn't get you power in the switch box, check in the wall box for the light fixture.
 
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