Installing a switch to control Fan/Light

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  #1  
Old 02-15-15, 06:41 PM
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Installing a switch to control Fan/Light

Hi:

I have no electrical knowledge. So, please guide me through this and I will see if I can do this with your help.

I have only one switch that controls both the ceiling fan and the light combo. I have to turn on the switch and operate the fan and the light separately with the pull chains which is a pain. So, I am thinking of installing this.

http://http://www.lowes.com/pd_70804-539-SFSQ-LFH-WH_1z0yt1o+1z10hap+1z10foy__?productId=3189469&Ns=p_product_price|0&pl=1&currentURL=%3FNs%3Dp_product_price%7C0%26page%3D1&facetInfo=Fan%20control|Combination%20fan%20and%20light%20control#BVRRWidgetID

Can this be done?

Thanks.
 
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  #2  
Old 02-15-15, 06:54 PM
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Welcome to the forums.

You'd like to install a dual switch. Great idea.

Here's what you need to do. Turn off the power to the circuit, pull out the switch and tell us what color wires are on the switch. Don't disconnect any wires at this point.

It's not likely there would be spare wires to the ceiling but we'll see.
When you have the switch out.... see if there are any red wires in the box.
 
  #3  
Old 02-15-15, 07:07 PM
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The switch linked to looks to only be a dimmer and not a speed control which is needed for a fan.
 
  #4  
Old 02-15-15, 08:00 PM
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Here is the picture of my switch box.

Name:  Switch.jpg
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There are more wires inside the box that are connected with the wire connector. I can post the picture if you need it.

Thanks.
 
  #5  
Old 02-15-15, 08:11 PM
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Here is the link to the same switch in amazon.

Lutron Electronics SFSQ-LFH-WH Slide-To-Off Fan Speed Control with On/Off Light, White - Wall Dimmer Switches - Amazon.com

It says that the switch for the light is on/off button and the slider is for fan. Correct me if I am wrong.

Thanks.
 
  #6  
Old 02-15-15, 08:25 PM
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We need to see all the wires at the switch.
 
  #7  
Old 02-15-15, 08:27 PM
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The red wire is a real good sign. If you can take a picture off all the wiring... that'd be good.
 
  #8  
Old 02-15-15, 08:59 PM
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More wires. Looks like the painter covered some of the wires with paint.

Name:  Switchbox-more wires.jpg
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  #9  
Old 02-15-15, 10:45 PM
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I think you're in good shape. There are two cables in the box and I labeled them.

The white wire from the two wire cable and the white wire from the three wire cable should be connected and capped.

The black of the two wire cable should go to the switch.
The red of the three wire cable goes to the switch.
The black of the three wire cable is not connected.

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If you confirm this as correct then that tells us that you have two switchable lines to the ceiling. You can use the red for one device and the black for the other device. The black of the two wire cable is the hot feed to the switch.
 
  #10  
Old 02-16-15, 02:27 AM
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A change will need to be made under the fan canopy.
 
  #11  
Old 02-16-15, 09:32 AM
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PJMax, I have the wires exactly the same way as you described.

This is the link to how to connect to the switch.

http://pdf.lowes.com/installationgui...21_install.pdf

I am not sure which wire needs to be tagged like they say in the instruction above. Also, yellow and green wires are in the instructions. Please explain.


Meanwhile, I will go ahead and buy the switch. Already, I feel like I accomplished something.

Thank you so much for patiently explaining.
 
  #12  
Old 02-16-15, 10:43 AM
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You will connect the black from the two wire cable to black of the switch.
The green wire connects to the bare wire off the switch.
You can connect the red wire of the switch to the red wire and then to the fan.
You can connect the yellow of the switch to the black wire in the three wire cable and then to the light.


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Like pcboss mentioned.... you have to make changes up at the fan/light also.
 
  #13  
Old 02-16-15, 11:57 AM
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So, what should I do under the canopy?

Thanks.
 
  #14  
Old 02-16-15, 12:17 PM
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So, what should I do under the canopy?
Your fan probably has a white blue and black wire. Right now black and blue are probably connected together. They need to be separated. Black of the 3-conductor to fan black. Red to fan blue.
 
  #15  
Old 02-16-15, 07:01 PM
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The canopy is hard to reach with the bed below. So, I was wondering if I could just put in the new switch and turn on to see what happens? or would it mess up the electrical circuit in the home?

Thanks.
 
  #16  
Old 02-16-15, 07:12 PM
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If you do nothing up top.... the same thing will be happening. Both will come on together.
The changes need to be made at both ends.
 
  #17  
Old 02-17-15, 01:23 PM
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Thank you. I just finished installing the new switch. Both fan/light works with the fan switch. I have to find a way to get to the canopy.

Meanwhile, I thought I will do both the switch box and the canopy in other bedrooms where it is easily accessible. But, the wiring in that switch box looks different than the one that I posted before.

Here is the new one.

Name:  Bedroom 3 Switchbox.jpg
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Please tell me how to connect the same switch (dual switch) that I posted in the beginning of this thread.

Also, do I need to do this under the canopy

(Your fan probably has a white blue and black wire. Right now black and blue are probably connected together. They need to be separated. Black of the 3-conductor to fan black. Red to fan blue.)

or is it different since the wires are different in the switchbox?

Thanks.
 
  #18  
Old 02-17-15, 03:41 PM
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The fan wires are the same but there are multiple ways to wire a switch depending on where power comes in and if there are any additional loads fed by the power in. If we know where power comes in, fan or switch, and number of cables (and if 2-conductor or 3-conductor) at each end we can better help you. That means it is best if we know the wiring at both ends of the circuit.
 
  #19  
Old 02-17-15, 04:15 PM
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Sorry for not explaining clearly.

I am done connecting the switch box in one room but not the canopy yet. Will get back to it later.

On to the next room...This is what I have in that switch box.

I have 3 wire (red to switch, white to the other white and black unconnected) and another 3 wire (white to the other white, 2 black wires connected to a black wire from the switch).

Before going to the canopy in this room, I thought I will connect the Dual switch first.
 
  #20  
Old 02-17-15, 05:09 PM
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I have 3 wire (red to switch, white to the other white and black unconnected)
Probably to the fan/light.
and another 3 wire (white to the other white, 2 black wires connected to a black wire from the switch).
Do you mean 2-conductor since you don't mention a red?
 
  #21  
Old 02-17-15, 08:54 PM
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There is no red in the second set of wires...one white and 2 black.

So, what color wires from the switchbox should I connect to what color wires in the new switch?

http://pdf.lowes.com/installationgui...21_install.pdf
 
  #22  
Old 02-17-15, 09:07 PM
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There is no red in the second set of wires...one white and 2 black
Not sure what you mean by set of wires but we are talking about cables and there is no such thing as a cable with one white and two black. Please look again. A cable is two or more wire in a metallic or nonmetallic sheath (usually +ground).
 
  #23  
Old 02-17-15, 09:14 PM
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There are 2 cables.

Cable 1: 1 white, 1 red & ground
Cable 2: 1 white, 2 black & ground

The picture of the outlet is couple of posts below this.

Sorry for being a pain.
 
  #24  
Old 02-17-15, 10:08 PM
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They do not make a cable with one white and two black. Most likely there are two 2-conductor cables and you are not seeing the white from the second one. Can you give us a picture looking straight into the back of the box.
 
  #25  
Old 02-18-15, 06:13 AM
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Here it is. Thanks for looking.

Name:  Bedroom 3 Switchbox.jpg
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  #26  
Old 02-18-15, 05:55 PM
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Bump. Guests are coming in a week. I want to finish this thing off.

Did you happen to look at my picture?

Thanks.
 
  #27  
Old 02-18-15, 06:05 PM
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Make necessary changes at fan.

.
 
  #28  
Old 02-18-15, 06:23 PM
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Sorry. I didn't even realize that there is a cable hiding beneath. That shows you are a pro and I am a novice.

Cable 1: Red, Black, White & Bare
Cable 2: Black, White & Bare
Cable 3: Black, White & Bare

So, do I have to do this in the fan?

"Your fan probably has a white blue and black wire. Right now black and blue are probably connected together. They need to be separated. Black of the 3-conductor to fan black. Red to fan blue."


Here it is.

Name:  Bedroom 3 Switchbox.jpg
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  #29  
Old 02-18-15, 06:32 PM
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See my second picture above.
 
  #30  
Old 02-18-15, 07:03 PM
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So, the black from the 3 wire that is unconnected right now gets connected to the black wire in the new switch and the black from 2 wire gets connected to yellow in the switch?

And like you said before, I have to follow this direction in the canopy right?

"Your fan probably has a white blue and black wire. Right now black and blue are probably connected together. They need to be separated. Black of the 3-conductor to fan black. Red to fan blue."

Also, there are 4 yellow wire nuts and 1 blue nut. Is there a difference between them on where to use or it doesn't matter?

I am almost there. Please bear with me.

Thanks.
 
  #31  
Old 02-18-15, 07:29 PM
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there are 4 yellow wire nuts and 1 blue nut. Is there a difference between them on where to use or it doesn't matter?
Color designates size but can vary with ages and manufacturer. The crimp ring on the neutral group should be cut off and replaced with a wire nut unless you have a insulated cap for it. i
The black from 2 wire gets connected to yellow in the switch?
Switch black is common. That replaces the pigtail. Switch yellow is light and switch red is fan.

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Last edited by ray2047; 02-18-15 at 07:56 PM.
  #32  
Old 02-19-15, 07:25 PM
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I finished installing the switches in 3 rooms. When I turned on, the slider was controlling the light and the on/off switch was controlling the fan. But, it is supposed to be the other way around. So, I just connected the Box Red to Switch Yellow and Box Black to Switch Red. I am not sure if it the right way to do it but, everything works fine.

I have never even thought that I would do this thing. All of this is possible because of the immense help from all of you guys.

Thanks again. I really appreciate you all (PJmax, pcboss, ray2047).

I got a great sense of achievement and satisfaction too.
 
  #33  
Old 02-19-15, 07:29 PM
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The red and black wires in that cable can be used interchangeably. Red doesn't have to be fan and black doesn't have to be the light..... or the other way around. It's whatever was chosen when the installation was done.

Good job there.
 
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Old 02-19-15, 08:12 PM
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Thanks for the thanks. It brings a smile to know we are appreciated and helped someone.
 
  #35  
Old 02-19-15, 08:23 PM
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Glad you got it. Sometimes I keep my instructions short to avoid confusion. I should have said the colors of wires used for fan and light can vary. I just used the colors most often used thinking you were going to rewire the fan anyway.
 
  #36  
Old 02-22-15, 08:19 AM
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Btw, I did rewire the fan canopy. All in all, I am happy and you guys saved me a bunch.
 
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