Wiring a Receptacle where a light fixture was

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Old 10-27-15, 08:42 AM
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Wiring a Receptacle where a light fixture was

I wanted to put a receptacle up where a fixture (controlled by a wall switch) was. There was a black, white and unshielded copper wire. I wired black to the brass on the outlet, white to the silver and the copper wire to the green ground screw.

I get power to the outlet but it is always on regardless of switch position. How to make it switchable?
 
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Old 10-27-15, 10:57 AM
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Welcome to the forums.

Did you miss telling us about other wires or do you ONLY have one white, one black and a single ground at that box ?

If you only have two single wires and the ground then the circuit is switched before it gets there.

If you have more wires.... we need to know how many cables you have.
A cable can contain several wires.
We know you have at least 1) two wire cable with ground.
 
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Old 10-27-15, 11:03 AM
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Thank you! No, it's just the black, white and unshielded where the light fixture was. I haven't yet looked in the wall switch.
 
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Old 10-28-15, 10:23 AM
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I get power to the outlet but it is always on regardless of switch position. How to make it switchable?
How do you know you have power regardless of switch position, how are you testing for power? Are you by chance using a non-contact voltage detector? If so, throw it away and get a meter to check for actual voltage. OR....plug something into the receptacle, such as a lamp or power tool, and try using the switch again.

unshielded
You apparently meant the bare ground wire. There is no shielding in residential wiring.
 
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Old 10-28-15, 10:40 AM
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I plugged in a lamp and the lamp stays on regardless of switch position.
 
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Old 10-28-15, 10:44 AM
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Ok....the next step is pull the switch and see what wire is being switched and test the switch.
 
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Old 10-29-15, 08:43 AM
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Hopefully, this will be helpful. (Sorry, they were right side up when I uploaded them!)

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Old 10-29-15, 09:09 AM
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The fixture looks like it should have another cable in the box.
 
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Old 10-29-15, 09:22 AM
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There was a ceiling fan in the spot where I have put the receptacle, if that helps (although that obviously doesn't change the amount of cables).
 
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Old 10-29-15, 09:27 AM
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There was a ceiling fan in the spot where I have put the receptacle, if that helps
Was that ceiling fan controlled with a remote?
 
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Old 10-29-15, 09:33 AM
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I don't think so. We just moved in and it belonged to the previous owner. If the picture isn't clear I can try to describe what is going on in the switch. It's a bit hard to tell.
 
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Old 10-29-15, 12:19 PM
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There are red, white, black and copper coming from the power source but the cables going to the receptacle (formerly the ceiling fan) are black, white and copper.
 
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Old 10-29-15, 01:19 PM
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There are red, white, black and copper coming from the power source
The power source would normally be a 2-conductor black and white cable. How did you determine the 3-conductor cable was the power source? (You can't do that with a non contact tester.)

Given a ceiling fan if you had only a 2-conductor cable (black, white) and a 3-conductor cable (black, red, white) the 2-conductor cable would be power in and the 3-conductor would go to the fan.

The only way the 3-comductor cable might be "hot" is if you have both a 3-conductor cable and 2-conductor cable at the light or in a third unknown mystery junction box (unlikely).
 
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Old 10-29-15, 01:32 PM
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Thank you, Ray. It was an assumption on my part. I assume the black/red/white/copper are from the power source because it comes up through the bottom of the box the wall switch is in. I assumed the black/white/copper go to the ceiling because it exits the switch box from the top. Also, because the wire on the ceiling is black/white/copper - no red.
 
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Old 10-29-15, 01:47 PM
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It doesn't seem the switch can control the light.
There was a ceiling fan in the spot where I have put the receptacle,
The fan may have only been controlled by pull chains. That switch may not be related to the ceiling fan box. It may control a wall receptacle. You will need a multimeter, preferably analog, to continue. A $8-$15 multimeter will be fine if you don't have one.
 
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Old 10-29-15, 02:11 PM
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Ray, you may very well be right. I never fully tested the switch and fan operation before the fan was removed but I do remember some vague confusion about that relationship.

I would love a multi-meter. How would I employ it in this case?
 
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Old 10-29-15, 02:39 PM
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How would I employ [a meter] in this case?
Set to AC volts you would determine which cable is hot. The cable at the light may be a power in cable. There also may be one at the switch. In the "ohm" mode it can be used to determine if a cable goes from point A to point B.
 
 

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