New light installation


Old 06-24-01, 07:33 PM
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I've been attempting to install a new track light system. I piggy backed the power from an existing outlet and now the new power line is hot for both white and black. Any suggestions?
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Old 06-24-01, 08:32 PM
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double check the wiring at the outlet. sounds like you tied the white and the black wires on to the hot side of the outlet.

Rick Miell
Old 06-24-01, 08:33 PM
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
Please specify how you concluded that both white and black are hot. Then please specify how you made the connections. And is it possible that the receptacle you tapped power from is switched? So if you take a voltage reading between the black and white wires with the breaker on, you get zero volts?
Old 06-25-01, 06:25 AM
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Re: new light installation

I both black and white wires read 120v when tested w/ground, but read 0 when tried together. John, it is entirely possible that the outlet was wired how you suggest - I'm not sure how far back I can trace the line to confirm.Is there anything else that I possibly missed? Is there a fix without removing(again) the panelling?
Old 06-25-01, 07:22 AM
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
Thanks, Tim. Good information. It seems your diagnostic procedures were valid.

When dealing with switched receptacles, special care is needed because sometimes white wires are hot. So if you merely hooked your white wire to another white wire, then you could have gotten a hot one.

Turn off the breaker.
Open up the receptacle box.
Tell me all the cables, all the wires, and all the connections you see. Be sure to identify the color of each wire, which cable it comes from, and where it is connected to.
Also tell me if the two break-out tabs (they connect the two screws) on either or both sides of the receptacle are broken out.
Old 06-25-01, 05:36 PM
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Re:Re:newlight installation

Well, John, I want to thank you immensely for your help! I was able to trace the power from the outlet. When the basement was finished 35+ yrs ago (the house is 40), The power for this particular outlet was taken from the furnace circuit (the fused safety switch to be exact). I was able to find and tap a little used circuit for my power, but I still had the same result. FINALLY I found out that there was another outlet on the loop, and one of the white wires had broken there! So, another outlet later, I have light!
So thank you again John for helping me out!

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