Switch problem, odd wiring, please help

Reply

  #1  
Old 07-09-20, 04:48 PM
R
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2020
Posts: 4
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Switch problem, odd wiring, please help

I am having an issue with a switch replacement to my light in the screen room. The switch worked fine, then it didn't. I assumed it went bad, got a replacement, and proceeded to install it. The wires on the back of the switch (it's a dimmer, BTW,) were as follows: one red wire to the switch, one black wire to the switch, and a green wire attached to the frame of the switch, just hanging loose. when I checked the circuit, I got power when I touched the tester to the red wire and the bare wire in the box. I got no power when testing red to black, or black to bare wire. I installed the new switch the way the old one was wired up, but attached the green wire to the bare wire in the box. No power .Am I doing something wrong, or is there a more serious issue going on here? Thanks in advance for any help.
 
  #2  
Old 07-09-20, 06:12 PM
J
Member
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: welland ontario
Posts: 7,719
Received 295 Votes on 254 Posts
Sounds like you did it correct and the problem was not the switch.
There should be a bundle of whites in the box. Check them and make sure one of them has not pulled loose.
 
  #3  
Old 07-12-20, 06:49 AM
R
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2020
Posts: 4
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I will try that, thanks for the input!
Update: hooked it up as before, still nothing. There is only one white wire in the box. Not sure what that means or how to proceed.
 
  #4  
Old 07-12-20, 07:08 AM
Geochurchi's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: United States
Posts: 4,956
Received 88 Votes on 83 Posts
Hi, if you touch red to black , does the light turn on? as mentioned check to be sure the white connections are tight.
Geo
 
  #5  
Old 07-12-20, 07:20 AM
R
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2020
Posts: 4
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Hi, Geo. I hooked red to black, got nothing, The one white wire in the box wasn't attached to anything. The only time I get anything on the test light is when I touch it to red and bare wire. The white wire was capped off. Just for fun, I touched the red and bare wires and it tripped the breaker.
 
  #6  
Old 07-12-20, 07:28 AM
J
Member
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: welland ontario
Posts: 7,719
Received 295 Votes on 254 Posts
The problem is in the light fixture.
 
  #7  
Old 07-12-20, 07:41 AM
R
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2020
Posts: 4
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Yes indeed! Swapped out the fixture for another, problem solved! Thanks to everyone for the help. I'm finding that the previous owners of this house shall we say, "took liberties" with some of the electrical here. I'm sure I'l be back with more problems to decipher. Have a great day all.
 
  #8  
Old 07-12-20, 11:43 AM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northern NJ - USA
Posts: 60,786
Received 1,324 Votes on 1,224 Posts
Actually the "liberty" he took in wiring that switch was to new code. That white wire is there in case you want to install a wifi or smart type switch as most require a neutral to operate correctly.
 
 

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