Lightening


  #1  
Old 07-07-02, 01:33 PM
BILLNJROTC
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Angry Lightening

We had a lightening storm the other day and, the wall switch that operates, a ceiling fan, does not work...I put a multi-meter and get no reading...even after I flipped switches...it is the only switch that doesn't work..I even replaced light switch....what next.
 
  #2  
Old 07-07-02, 01:45 PM
J
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I'm not sure how you conducted your test, but it's probable that it's not the switch that is bad, but the fan. There are many incorrect ways to use a multimeter on a switch.

Try an experiment: Shut off the breaker. Take out the switch and use a wire nut to connect together the two wires (not the ground) that were formerly connected to the switch. Turn the breaker back on. If the fan doesn't come on, it's probably toast. It may have succumbed to the lightening.

Make sure the problem isn't simply that the pull chains are off. And if your fan has a remote control, it's quite likely that that unit is what is damaged.

There are, of course, a number of other tests you can perform. But we need to know whether your switch is wired with a switch loop or whether power comes to the switch before going to the fan. Is one of the two wires connected to the switch white?
 
  #3  
Old 07-07-02, 01:50 PM
BILLNJROTC
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lightening

yes one of the wires is white..that is too the switch
 
  #4  
Old 07-07-02, 02:21 PM
J
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In that case, you have a switch loop. This allows you to wire the fan directly to the power cable (as an experiment), completely bypassing the switch and the cable connected to it. This can be done by lowering the bell on the fan and reconnecting the wires at the ceiling. Let us know when and if you want to do this. Be sure to mark all the wires in the ceiling before disconnecting anything so you can put it back together as it was before.
 
  #5  
Old 10-30-03, 02:05 AM
neallm
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Question about bypassing a switch

It has been mentioned to bypass the switch to test a ceiling fan problem by wiring the two hot wires together as an experiment. Is there any danger in doing this and leaving them wired together for an extended period of time? It's a blown switch that controls an outside light that I seldom use and it could take me a while to get around to replacing the switch. If I don't replace the switch and I don't bypass it as you described I'm loosing all of the power to my rec room (the switch is the first thing on the circuit). If I should replace the switch as soon as possible I will make the time to do so. I'm mostly asking the question just to get a better grasp of the proper do's and don'ts when dealing with home circuitry.

TIA for any advice that might be offered.

Best wishes - Neallm
 
  #6  
Old 10-30-03, 04:49 AM
R
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neallm,

Somehow I doubt that a single switch controls power to your entire rec-room. Switches generally control a single outlet or a light. They are not generally wired to control every outlet in a room.
 
  #7  
Old 10-30-03, 08:45 AM
J
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There is no danger in bypassing a switch for an extended period of time. It's just like leaving the switch always on. But as Bob suggests, it seems that there is more to this story than we now know.
 
  #8  
Old 10-30-03, 08:58 AM
neallm
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Thanks John for answering my question. I wish there was more I could add but all I can tell you is that when I remove this burnt switch from the circuit and then tie the two wires that were attached to it together, power is restored to my rec-room.

There is one thing I can add. Tieing the switch wires together doesn't turn the outside light on. Unless, perhaps, the bulb is burned out. I'll try a new bulb after I tie the wires together and see what happens. Hopefully I will be able to replace the switch this evening but it could have to wait until Monday.

Thanks again - Neal
 
 

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