Simple wiring question ( outlet --> switch --> light)

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Old 07-08-09, 08:42 AM
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Simple wiring question ( outlet --> switch --> light)

I had an outlet that was controlled by a lightswitch. I didn't like that. I wanted an overhead. So I installed an overhead light and ran the wire to the switch box. Now I'm having trouble getting it to work.

Context: The outlet (that used to be controlled by the switch) has three-way romex coming in and single pole wire going out (to the light switch). At one point the outlet would only work if the light switch was turned on and something was plugged in (ha). But now I believe I have the 3-2 wiring correct on the outlet.

Questions:
1. I know I should use a single-pole light switch, but the one I've got is a three-way. How do I wire it as a single pole? I think right now I have the incoming hot wire going to the common pole and the neutral going to the screw on the opposite side. Help?

2. I was eventually going to put a fan with a light attached to that switch. Can I do that without 3-way wiring from the outlet to the switch?
 
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Old 07-08-09, 03:46 PM
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Originally Posted by maxman10 View Post
Context: The outlet (that used to be controlled by the switch) has three-way romex coming in and single pole wire going out (to the light switch). At one point the outlet would only work if the light switch was turned on and something was plugged in (ha). But now I believe I have the 3-2 wiring correct on the outlet.
Your terminology is a little off but I think I know what you mean, so I will give this a try.

The 2 wire going to the switch. You will have a white that may or may not be colored. Disconnect that from the colored wires (I'm guessing black) and connect it to the white wires. The black from the 2 wire will now be connected to where the white was connected. (This all assumes that the white was connected to the hot and the black was the switch leg to the outlet. If this is not correct let us know and we can straighten it out)

In the switch box you will then connect the white to the white you installed going to the fan. The black will be connect to the blackish screw on your switch. (see below) The black going to the fan will be connected to the brass screw.

If you want both top and bottom of the receptacle to be hot all the time you just need to run a jumper from the hot to the red wire of your 3 wire cable.

Originally Posted by maxman10 View Post
1. I know I should use a single-pole light switch, but the one I've got is a three-way. How do I wire it as a single pole? I think right now I have the incoming hot wire going to the common pole and the neutral going to the screw on the opposite side. Help?
Yes, you can but really the proper switch is only about 50 cents. If you must use the three way, just connect the hot to the blackish screw and your switch leg to one of the brass screws. If the light is on with the switch in the down position you can either flip the switch or just move the wire to the other brass screw.

Originally Posted by maxman10 View Post
2. I was eventually going to put a fan with a light attached to that switch. Can I do that without 3-way wiring from the outlet to the switch?
You can install the fan with a light using just a 2 wire cable. While you can turn the fixture on and off with the switch, you will have to control the fan with the pull chain. Or better yet, get a remote control for the fan. When you turn on the switch the light will come on first with a remote.
 
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