Separating Fan and Lights switch in 1930's bathroom

Old 06-19-14, 12:55 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 1
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Separating Fan and Lights switch in 1930's bathroom

I bought this 1930s craftsman recently and it has some aspects I find pretty annoying. One is that the two bathroom lights and the fan are all controlled by a single switch. I'd be fine with the two lights on one switch, but the fan is really loud and no good. I read a couple of threads on the topic and was planning to separate the wires to go to separate switches, but found two black wires and no ground, etc. Not what I was expecting (with my very limited knowledge). Does anyone know whats going on or how to proceed?
Attached Images  
Old 06-19-14, 02:32 AM
chandler's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 36,607
Upvotes: 0
Received 9 Upvotes on 8 Posts
Welcome to the forums! The wiring from the fan will need to be isolated and a new cable run from it to a second switch. Power must originate from the switch in that scenario.

So, first find out where power comes in. Either at the switch or at the fan (most likely switch). Do you have a multimeter? If not, it would be a good tool to have and they cost about $10 at a box store. Get an analog and not a digital, as they are more accurate for what you are doing. You will need to test each of the switch terminals to the metal box to determine which wire is "hot". Do you have attic access so you can fish another cable from the fan to the switch?
Old 06-19-14, 06:49 AM
pcboss's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Maryland
Posts: 13,970
Received 194 Upvotes on 170 Posts
To do what you want to do will require running new wiring. The problem most likely will be that ungrounded wiring should not be extended and all new cables would be needed.

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Your question will be posted in: