Light fixture 2 sets of wires, box 2 sets of wires, need help

Reply

  #1  
Old 02-27-12, 02:56 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: US
Posts: 14
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Light fixture 2 sets of wires, box 2 sets of wires, need help

I am trying to replace a construction light fixture with a permanent one in my basement. When I took down the construction bulb, the box had 2 sets of wires and was wired to the bulb with whites connected from each wire source and both blacks connected from each source. My new fixture is a 2-bulb fixture with 2 sets of wires (black/white) and the ground. I determined one set of wires from the box goes to the switch. There are also several canned lights that run off of another switch but only come on after the main light is switched on. So what would be the correct wiring connection to maintain the chain here? I'm fumbling through this and tried to wire one set of wires from the light to one set from the box (black to black, white to white) so I have half the light fixture connected one set of wires in the box and the other half of the fixture to the other set of wires in the box but this only turns on one bulb and the canned lights do not come on (yeah, I know...I'm a girl). Basically I have 4 black wires and 4 white wires between the fixture and box (copper from both box wires are twisted together). I didn't realize the other lights were tied to the main light when I started this, so I could use some help! Thanks!
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 02-27-12, 03:16 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,597
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
Are you saying previously both whites were connected together and to one side of the work light and that both blacks were connected together and to the other side of the work light. Please tell us all the wires in the switch box for this light and how they are connected.
 
  #3  
Old 02-27-12, 06:07 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: US
Posts: 14
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Yes both whites were wired together on one side of the construction bulb and the blacks on the other. I don't know if the electrician did this so that the other lights could be used as a temporary thing or what?
 
  #4  
Old 02-27-12, 06:14 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: US
Posts: 14
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I checked another construction bulb in my basement that has 2 wires running to the box and it has whites on one side and blacks on the other. Would the correct way to do this be to take the black wire (box) that runs the switch (because this is the only one with power) and connect it to the white wire of the other box connection and then connect whites from light to remaining white and blacks from light to remaining black?
 

Last edited by Mamadubs; 02-27-12 at 07:14 PM.
  #5  
Old 02-27-12, 07:03 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,597
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
Please tell us the switch wiring.
 
  #6  
Old 02-27-12, 07:26 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: US
Posts: 14
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
The switch wiring as in the actual wall switch? I looked at it and there's 2 black wires connected to the wall switch and 2 other sets nutted together (black to black and white to white).
 
  #7  
Old 02-27-12, 11:06 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,597
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
The switch wiring as in the actual wall switch? I looked at it and there's 2 black wires connected to the wall switch
So that means one cable carries power in at the light and the other cable caries power out to the switch so therefore the connections at the light would be all whites connected to each other and all blacks connected to each other.
 
  #8  
Old 02-28-12, 09:20 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: US
Posts: 14
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Ray, there are 2 sets of wires in the ceiling box and then 2 sets of wires on the light (2 bulb fixture). I took a pic of the box but I don't see a way to post it here except through a URL. If I connect all whites, then there would be 4 white wires (2 from the light and 1 from each box wire). I hope I'm making sense and appreciate your advice. Thanks!
 
  #9  
Old 02-28-12, 09:50 AM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,597
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
Yes, all four whites together and all four blacks together.

http://www.doityourself.com/forum/li...-pictures.html

 

Last edited by ray2047; 02-28-12 at 10:09 AM.
  #10  
Old 02-28-12, 10:10 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: US
Posts: 14
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts


Thanks much for your help Ray. I'm guessing this will require a pretty good sized wire connector. I will give it a try and let you know how it turns out.
 
  #11  
Old 02-28-12, 10:17 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: US
Posts: 14
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
  #12  
Old 02-28-12, 10:38 AM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,597
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
Sorry, I was wrong. The wiring I gave you will give you an unswitched light always on. I see no way to do this with out running new cable.
 
  #13  
Old 02-28-12, 11:52 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: US
Posts: 14
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Ray, I didn't try it yet but it doesn't make sense that it would need a new cable. All the lights were previously working correctly. The electrician wired everything knowing the temporary fixture would be replaced. I saw a similar problem on another forum and I believe they said to take the black wire in the ceiling box (the one with power to it) and connect it to the white wire of the other cable, then the black/white wires of the light could be hooked up to the remaining black/white of the box. Does this seem like a plausible solution? Thanks, Deb
 
  #14  
Old 02-28-12, 11:59 AM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,597
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
Was the old light you removed controlled by a switch? Would you please post a picture of the wiring in that switch. You said earlier one cable at the light went to a switch. Is that the switch that controlled the light?
 
  #15  
Old 02-28-12, 05:32 PM
pcboss's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Maryland
Posts: 14,956
Received 33 Votes on 28 Posts
Could you please zoom into the ceiling box and post a pic? I can only see 3 wires. I need more detail please.
 
  #16  
Old 02-28-12, 05:55 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: US
Posts: 14
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Ray, yes the light that I removed was controlled by the wall switch. I tested this out as I first hooked up the light by going with one set of black/white wires from the light to one set in box. This resulted in one bulb working and the other not. I tested the switch while the bulb was lit and the switch turns it off and on. I'll post a link for the wall switch wires here:
SwitchWiring.jpg picture by mamadubs12 - Photobucket
 
  #17  
Old 02-28-12, 06:04 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: US
Posts: 14
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
pcboss, here's a better pic of the ceiling box. The long set of wires do operate the switch and are the ones with power going to them.
BoxWiring.jpg picture by mamadubs12 - Photobucket
 
  #18  
Old 02-28-12, 06:11 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,597
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
Please don't hate me for the next request. Connect the two blacks together in the box and connect the two whites together and see if the other lights in the basement work correctly. correctly. I missed your edit to post #4.
 
  #19  
Old 02-28-12, 06:27 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: US
Posts: 14
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Ray I couldn't hate you...I think you're my only hope haha! Yes, when I wired the blacks together and the whites together, the recessed lights (3 of them) will come on--only after turning on the main light switch and the wall switch for those lights. The main light switch must be on first though. Does this sound normal?
 
  #20  
Old 02-28-12, 07:03 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,597
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
The main light switch must be on first though. Does this sound normal?
No but it is not wrong either. If you want to change that then we will have to do more digging. I forget if you said but was this the behavior before you removed the work light?
 
  #21  
Old 02-28-12, 07:24 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: US
Posts: 14
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Yes, that's the way the light operated beforehand. I don't need to change it but it would be nice if the canned lights worked once the new fixture is up. Would it be correct to connect all whites together and all blacks together then (4 wires in each nut)?
 
  #22  
Old 02-28-12, 08:20 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,597
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
Yes go with the four and four plan. If you want everything on one switch that may be tricker unless you want to just remove the secondary switch.
 
  #23  
Old 02-28-12, 08:35 PM
pcboss's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Maryland
Posts: 14,956
Received 33 Votes on 28 Posts
Strange setup that the one switch is downstream from another.
 
  #24  
Old 02-28-12, 08:46 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: US
Posts: 14
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Thanks guys, I'll let ya know how it works out tomorrow.
 
  #25  
Old 02-29-12, 10:58 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: US
Posts: 14
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Thanks for all the help! The light is installed and everything is working as it was before. Gotta changed my electrician hat into a carpenter one now and install some baseboard
 
  #26  
Old 02-29-12, 11:18 AM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,597
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
Glad we could help. Thanks for letting us know how it turned out.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: