Can't figure what wall switch does

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Old 08-09-15, 08:47 PM
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Can't figure what wall switch does

I know there are many of these types of questions on the forums. I've got a switch in my living room, kind of near the fireplace. Bought the house 4 years ago, still not sure what this switch does.

It's on the living room lighting circuit that also has a ceiling fan.

I thought it might be a switched receptacle, checked the one near by. Also that wouldn't be on a lighting circuit would it?

It's a single pole switch, attached to it are one black (hot) and a switched red wire going out. I can't for the life of me figure out the purpose of this switch. I want to take it out and drywall over it but probably need to disconnect the other end first?

It definitely doesn't control any of the lights or the ceiling fan in the room. I've looked at the two closest outlets and they have no red wire going to them.

All the switches for the lighting controls are in one spot, on the other side of the room.

Any tips? Thanks
 
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Old 08-09-15, 09:08 PM
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Possibly a switch for the fireplace ?
The wiring may go to a junction box in the basement... if you have a basement.
 
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Old 08-10-15, 03:29 AM
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From your description we are assuming your wiring is run in conduit. It may or may not help, but if you remove the power to this circuit and pull the switch, could you post a picture or two of the switch, box and wiring inside it? http://www.doityourself.com/forum/el...your-post.html
 
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Old 08-10-15, 03:43 AM
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I thought it might be a switched receptacle, checked the one near by
Did you check both sides of the receptacle? I'd check the others too just to make sure.
 
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Old 08-10-15, 04:21 AM
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Also that wouldn't be on a lighting circuit would it?
Sure it can.

Since it is near the fireplace I would also suspect it has something to do with the fireplace. Perhaps for a blower or something else. A fireplace blower might not run when the switch is turned on because many times there is a thermal switch in series with the wall switch. This is so the fan will not turn on until the fireplace is up to temp so it is not just blowing cold air.
 
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Old 08-10-15, 06:01 AM
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The code requires a switched lighting controlled receptacle or light in rooms like the living room.

I suspect a half switched receptacle that you have not found or it was replaced and a tab not broken so it overrides the switch.
 
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Old 08-10-15, 08:33 PM
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Possibly a switch for the fireplace ?
The wiring may go to a junction box in the basement... if you have a basement.
Can't find any junction in the basement for this

could you post a picture or two of the switch, box and wiring inside it
See below

Since it is near the fireplace I would also suspect it has something to do with the fireplace. Perhaps for a blower or something else. A fireplace blower might not run when the switch is turned on because many times there is a thermal switch in series with the wall switch. This is so the fan will not turn on until the fireplace is up to temp so it is not just blowing cold air
That is what I initially suspected. But I can run the fireplace including blower and turn this switch on and off and nothing happens to the fireplace. There is an odd electrical cable running in to the fireplace though, that just terminates. Almost like they had the fireplace and then changed the confirmation from using a switch to operate the fireplace to the current config which uses a remote.

See the pictures below. It thought that this was an easy setup and the old config came in, but when I started investigating the switch it wasn't making sense. No matter what I do, those random wires going in to the fireplace ARE NOT powered no matter what.

I suspect a half switched receptacle that you have not found or it was replaced and a tab not broken so it overrides the switch.
I shut the switch OFF and checked all the receptacles in the room and they are all powered. I took one of them out (the closest) to make sure that like you said it was meant to be wired like that but a tab hadn't been broken. Also this switch is definitely on a LIGHTING circuit... if it was wired to a receptacle wouldn't it be on that circuit?

Hope these pictures can help. In my switch, the red wire is "switched"... but can't find the red wire leading to anywhere.

Thanks for everyones help

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Old 08-11-15, 07:18 AM
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My guess is with Tolyn that this was probably intended for use with the fireplace insert. Perhaps that fireplace is not original, and the wiring was changed. Maybe the builder has them all rough wired the same and does the final configuration depending on which fireplace option the homeowner chooses. There might be an unbroken tab on the receptacle under the fireplace overriding the switch. Is there / was there accent lighting over the mantle? Lots of possibilities.
 
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