Manufacturer Stupidity

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  #1  
Old 10-14-12, 04:56 PM
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Manufacturer Stupidity

Look at the diagram below that came on a Hampton Bay bath exaust fan



Lets start with the rather strange way the power is run then go right to to the superfluous misnamed yellow wire. This is from a post in Lighting. The OP couldn't quite figure out what to do with the yellow but because it was called "common" assumed it was a neutral and should go with the other neutrals. Luckily he posted first so no big boom. But heck there is no reason for the yellow wire in the first place.

How can the homeowner even be expected to wire something with this stupidity. I wonder if maybe this was adapted from a non US fan the company makes and the person making the conversion for the company didn't understand our wiring methods or even basic wiring.

Heck, there is even a brown wire which I took for black because this is the US not the UK.
 

Last edited by ray2047; 10-14-12 at 05:14 PM.
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  #2  
Old 10-14-12, 05:15 PM
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Well, the switch has to be energized somehow. I would question how the internal buss bars were wired together to see if the hot ever made it up to the top bar. The yellow should have been black. Or am I missing something?
 
  #3  
Old 10-14-12, 06:17 PM
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No need for the yellow or the 2-conductor cable. If power comes in at the switch as they show the hot would be connected directly to the switch no reason to run it to the light and then back. A standard 4 conductor cable would carry the power from the switch plus the neutral to the fan. (Note the cable colors are not those found in US cables.)

If power comes in at the fan again all that is needed is a 4-conductor cable. Neutral from the power in cable could be connected to the fan so the white of the 4-conductor could be remarked and used as the hot to the switch. Again no need for the yellow wire.

Trivia: in the UK the brown wire is the ungrounded conductor.
 
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Old 10-14-12, 06:38 PM
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Yep, I see your point. Why not just wire the switch first, then go to the controls. Yeah, those UK guys.....bundle of laughs.
 
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Old 10-15-12, 07:06 PM
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I went to my nearby HD just to see this fan today. They did not have a single Hampton Bay fan/light combo in the store. They only had like 25 different models of Nutone. Who else sells Hampton.
 
  #6  
Old 10-16-12, 03:01 AM
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PJ, I just went online to HD site and they say "out of stock, online only". Come to think of it, I have never seen a Hampton Bay bath fan in the displays there, either. They carry them, but just online.
 
  #7  
Old 10-16-12, 01:36 PM
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It looks as if they also show a terminal block, something that's usually done overseas.
 
  #8  
Old 10-16-12, 02:21 PM
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The U.S. is just an island to manufacturing companies and distributors. They usually have open-ended/general instructions to adapt to any island or system.

I think the top of the instructions tell the person buying the product to "Consult a LICENSED electrician for proper wiring and installation" - The same box may go to many countries/islands and just have different labels on the outside.

Dick
 
  #9  
Old 10-30-12, 05:36 PM
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Right. So what do I do now?

I've been trying to figure out this damn thing all day.

I'm thinking to wire the switch normally (hot from house to switch), like every damn normal switch ever.

My question then is: do I run the black up to the unit and tie it to the black AND the "component" wires (the fan specific, light specific)..... or am I good tying it directly to the component wires that I want to be operated by the switch?

(The light is going to be controlled by a switch that controls two other lights, the fan will be controlled by a timer-switch -- so I'd rather not do the ridiculously convoluted diagram they suggest).

I'm good on how to handle neutrals and grounds. Just not sure if the "black" the diagram says to tie into on the unit is nothing more than a loop that comes back out their "yellow - common" line. If it is, I figure I can ignore the damn thing and just bring the power
 
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Old 10-30-12, 05:43 PM
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Yes, ignore the yellow and run a wire to the function(s) you want to use. If you want to use multiple switches use multiple wires in ENT or cable.

Would you like me to move this to your original thread?
 
  #11  
Old 10-30-12, 06:32 PM
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Oh I wasn't the OP, just another person with the misfortune of buying this damned confusing thing. I can't figure out why in the hell they designed it the way they did.

Thanks for your help! That's what I suspected, but it's hard to make sense of this thing...
 
  #12  
Old 10-30-12, 06:45 PM
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I see your point Ray. Why run the hot and neutral to the unit and then the hot back to the switch?
The way I see it does make sense. The yellow wire is the hot to the switch, common to the switch legs. As you have pointed out before, "common" is not the neutral.

Just for more info: ANY color, other than white, white with a stripe, green, green with yellow stripes, and gray are ungrounded conductors. Yellow and brown are commonly used to identify hots in a 277/480 volt system.

The wiring diagram also satisfies the code requirement of having a neutral in each box.
 
  #13  
Old 10-31-12, 09:39 AM
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Hi: Ray

"The OP couldn't quite figure out what to do with the yellow but because it was called "common" assumed it was a neutral and should go with the other neutrals."
My suggestion Ray. Kindly Edit your original post above. Insert a link to the members original post in lighting into your post above. Might help to better understand the entire circumstances, etc. May show another photo where country of origin is located maybe???

Thanks
Tom

HI: Dick

"The U.S. is just an island to manufacturing companies and distributors"
US is an island? HA HA. Yikes....

You mean Central distribution location?

If Hampton Bay manufacturing is an American company with both headquarters and manufacturing facilities here in America? I'm not sure it is an American company because neither could I find a boxed fan by the company around here. Label would say where product is manufactured.

Likely could be a UK company and/or have it's manufacturing facilities in UK with warehouse(s) here for distribution to retailers in America. (???)

 
  #14  
Old 10-31-12, 10:17 AM
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It could also be made in China for a distributor/marketer and they just put different labels on the box depending on what the marketer/distributor wants it to say, but the guts of the cardboard shipping box do not change. The products could be sold in many countries (U.S., UK or others) with different names on the cardboard box or the instructions.

Many major retailers buy from importers/marketers/distributors because it is cheaper and they do not have to go though all of the customs and importing regulations. Some marketers distribute the same product to several retailers with different names on the box the customer sees. There are many layers when it comes to foreign trade.

The U.S. controls are very weak when it comes to labeling retail boxes. Many foreign manufacturers have no qualms about what the marketer wants in the form of labels unless it is sold in the country of manufacture. Then it must be absolutely correct because it could harm people in the country of manufacture and use. If exported, the product itself may be stamped "with made in ???", but smaller components are usually not stamped from a practical standpoint. I don't think the Buick transmissions/parts made in Shanghai, China are stamped because they are all exported and the car manufacturer can say the car was made in the "U.S.". - It is a real jungle as the world shrinks and changes.

Dick
 
  #15  
Old 11-04-12, 05:24 PM
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wiring it other than diagram instructs doesn't work

Well, I tried ignoring the "power the unit first, then run power down to the switch and then back up" ridiculousness of their design.... but..... didn't work.

I tried it as I thought would make it easiest --- by energizing the switch, then running the (load) hot up to the the particular unit component wires (fan, light). The switch would energize the (load) hot wire running up to the unit, as it should, but the unit wouldn't respond, for neither the light nor the fan.

Big waste of time. I thought about trying to wire it as the diagram says, but I can't figure out how the hell I'd wire the other lights in the room off the same switch. Completely bizarre design. I'm giving up and returning it.
 
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