Mystery wiring - what was previous owner going for?

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Old 10-26-20, 03:27 PM
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Question Mystery wiring - what was previous owner going for?

Hey everyone, I was just wondering if anyone out there can suggest what the previous owner was going for when they added these remodel boxes shown in the picture? This is a house built in 2007. The lower box is at switch height and gets power lines (from somewhere, maybe the outlet) and appears to feed them to the upper box. The clock is battery-powered and I put that up.

You can see the refrigerator behind the boxes, the kitchen is to the left and behind me is the living area (yeah - "open concept") so this wall is in view from a big area. To the right is the laundry room and a door to the garage.

I can only assume the were trying to put in a switch to control power to something, but it's not even centered on the wall. Oh, and the boxes do have cover plates on them...



Thanks,
Brian
 
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10-29-20, 10:54 AM
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Old 10-26-20, 03:49 PM
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Maybe they had a table there with a lamp on it?
 
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Old 10-26-20, 04:23 PM
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You'll have to do some investigating and find where the wires are coming from and where they are going. I have installed old work boxes and blank cover plates when I've had to repair wiring and make a connection.
 
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Old 10-26-20, 04:27 PM
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I should have included another picture showing the larger area. The hallway there at the right is about a 3' opening and is the most common entryway into the house as it comes from the garage. A small table could be put there but it's not a good idea.


 
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Old 10-26-20, 07:53 PM
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My only guess is a touchscreen panel for home automation that needed power. No idea why it would be wired off the switch though, which makes me think that my idea is incorrect anyway.

Don't spend too much effort trying to figure out prior owners. Disconnect it, pull the cables, and patch the drywall. Never think about it again!

 
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Old 10-27-20, 05:22 AM
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Hi, remove the wire nuts and open splice and see what goes out, is that lower box at switch height? how many cables in the upper box?
Geo
 
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Old 10-27-20, 07:43 AM
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Light switch for a kitchen light fixture?
 
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Old 10-28-20, 04:20 AM
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It is possible they renovated that wall for some reason and found open splices in the wall. I believe I see blank plates on two of those boxes. Instead of re=routing the wires they enclosed the wires in junction boxes as they should have and made them accessible.
 
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Old 10-28-20, 03:39 PM
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The lower box is at switch height and gets power lines (from somewhere, maybe the outlet) and appears to feed them to the upper box.
That looks pretty low for switch height.
 
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Old 10-29-20, 10:54 AM
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Old 10-30-20, 07:35 PM
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Baldwin: thanks for the picture! Yes, that may have been what they were going for.

Casualjoe: the bottom of the plate cover on the lower plate is at 39" above the floor, the same as the rest of the house. That's roughly 42" to the middle of the switch. I don't know the code requirement here in Orange County, CA, but it's the same throughout the house (built in 2007).

I've been meaning to get a non-contact voltage tester so I could check if they were live. I'm fairly curious about this but we're expecting to move out in less than a year so I may not put too much effort into it. But I'll probably look at it more this weekend as I would like to know what's going on here.

The bottom box has a 3" x 4 3/4" plate at 39" above the floor (measured from bottom of plate).
The upper box has a 3 3/8" x 5 1/8" plate at 48" above the floor.
The outlet there also has a bigger outlet plate than the other ones in the house.

I think I'll have to take Pilot Dane's suggestion and find if the wires are connected like I think they are.

The lower box has a set of white, black (maybe green), and copper wires coming in that are tied to a similar set going out. Although the black wires are not connected to each other. I took these two pictures a while ago. I'll double-check them this weekend.

Lower box:


Upper box:

 
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