Can someone help me how this area of my house is wired?

Reply

  #1  
Old 10-13-19, 04:50 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2017
Posts: 23
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Can someone help me how this area of my house is wired?

I can do/have done some basic electrical work around the house, but I seem to have encountered an odd/frustrating setup in my house that I'd like some advice on.

I had some drywallers come in and redo a room. In doing so, they removed some light fixtures. One of those fixtures is a three-way. When I wired the light up and toggled the switches in some configuration, I blew a fuse. It DID work in one configuration. This is generally what I'm confused about. So, I removed everything and thought I'd check in with you all before calling someone.

Here is the wiring: https://drive.google.com/file/d/144-...ew?usp=sharing. You can see there are TWO insulated bundles, each one with a ground, common, hot and red wire.

Here is the light: https://drive.google.com/file/d/144J...ew?usp=sharing. There are two bulbs on the underside, and two pairs of black/white wires.

Now, here is the way in which one that does work is wired up (in another room): https://drive.google.com/file/d/149n...ew?usp=sharing. All the whites are connected, and all the blacks are connected. There is no red wire.

So, going on how this other light is wired, I figured all the black should be connected (including the black from the fixture), all the white should be connected (including the white from the fixture), and the red pair should be connected. So I got the wire nuts and did it. This works (in that it actually lights up). I can control the light through one of the switches. But upon a certain configuration of toggling the pair of switches controlling this fixture, a fuse blows. So, I've obviously got some kind of loop going on that's bad. My spidey sense is telling me I've missed the point of the red wire.

How do I wire this? And, more importantly, can someone teach me how this is wired in my wall? I'm kind of curious what's going on here.

Thanks in advance.

Name:  sw.jpg
Views: 85
Size:  90.4 KB
 

Last edited by PJmax; 10-13-19 at 09:26 PM. Reason: added box picture
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 10-13-19, 06:09 PM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: welland ontario
Posts: 6,814
Received 87 Votes on 80 Posts
We need to see the wiring at the two three way switches to know what is going on.
 
  #3  
Old 10-13-19, 06:17 PM
Member
Join Date: Oct 2019
Posts: 12
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I am not an expert but have wired plenty of houses to hopefully help you out. I havenít seen both reds at the light fixture before so I imagine someone previously re-wired your house to add the second switch. You should be able to connect black and white to the light, wire the reds together and wire the switches. Maybe the attached picture will shed some light on this.....
 
Attached Images  
  #4  
Old 10-13-19, 07:14 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2017
Posts: 23
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Joed: Certainly. Here is the wiring on both switches.

First: https://drive.google.com/file/d/14HC...ew?usp=sharing

Name:  sw1.jpg
Views: 58
Size:  56.3 KB

Second:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/14A9...ew?usp=sharing

Name:  sw2.jpg
Views: 56
Size:  78.7 KB
 

Last edited by PJmax; 10-13-19 at 09:25 PM. Reason: added labeled pictures
  #5  
Old 10-13-19, 08:01 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2017
Posts: 23
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Hey Ryan. Thanks for your feedback.

Unfortunately, I think what you describe is precisely what I did. Black and black on the light went together, white and white on the light went together, and red was connected to itself. Doing this caused the breaker to go when I toggled a particular configuration of the 3-way switches.

I'm thinking I need to diagram this out and try my best to figure out how things are connected. I think I'm agreeing with you that some person re-wired this in a weird way!

Edit: I also followed this guy's instructions and caused the breaker to flip too: https://dfarq.homeip.net/where-the-r...light-fixture/
 
  #6  
Old 10-13-19, 08:10 PM
Member
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: USA
Posts: 484
Received 7 Votes on 7 Posts
https://www.easy-do-it-yourself-home...g-diagram.html
might look at option 3 at the above site.
 
  #7  
Old 10-13-19, 08:17 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2017
Posts: 23
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Gonna put the kids to bed and then I'll give it a go. Need to figure out a way to buy you all beers for this
 
  #8  
Old 10-13-19, 09:17 PM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: welland ontario
Posts: 6,814
Received 87 Votes on 80 Posts
You have option #3 from the above link.
Do you have a way to test which set of the wires is hot?
 
  #9  
Old 10-13-19, 09:27 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2017
Posts: 23
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Joed / Alan -

You magnificent humans, you got it figured out. Yes, I have quite a bit of equipment here and was able to quickly figure out which wire goes where once I saw the diagram. Came together beautifully. I'm going to study these three setups and understand how they work.

Thanks all.

P.S. Is this a common way of setting up a 3-way? I've never seen this before. I'm a hobbyist and so it's entirely possible this is a very regular way and I'm just too green to have seen it. It's not how other 3-way switches are wired in this house -- so I'm assuming perhaps a different electrician did it?.
 
  #10  
Old 10-13-19, 09:30 PM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northern NJ - USA
Posts: 53,245
Received 381 Votes on 358 Posts
It is wired like option three but the colors are different.
Like Joed mentioned..... you need to determine which three wire is carrying the power in.
If switch 2 is hot..... then power will appear at the light box on a red or black depending on switch position.
The other cable will be completely dead.

I labeled your switch pictures with the C and T terminals.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


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