Another red wire conundrum

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Old 11-18-13, 01:19 PM
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Another red wire conundrum

Hello,

I've been reading some of the other posts and answers here which sound very close to my situation, but I have a slight variation which I haven't seen yet.

I had to pull the electrical box out of the ceiling in order to secure a new one to a brace, since it wasn't supporting the weight of the new light we put up. Unfortunately, I wasn't smart enough to make a note of what was connected to what before pulling it all apart to get the box out.

In the ceiling I have two wires, one is a white/black/red. The other is a white/black. I am fairly certain that the red was connected to black, but the variation is that I also had a small piece of wire (about 6 inches long) that somewhere was looped in. I am not sure what this would have been joining, and can't seem to find any potential ideas. Would this have joined the black from wire 1 to something else?

The house was built in 1979, and this is in Alberta, Canada.

Any thoughts?

Thanks in advance!
 
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Old 11-18-13, 01:48 PM
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and Hello to you .

Hello,

Unfortunately, I wasn't smart enough to make a note of what was connected to what before pulling it all apart to get the box out.
I'll bet you won't make this mistake the next time ( he says jokingly )

In the ceiling I have two wires, one is a white/black/red. The other is a white/black.
Just to clarify what you are describing --- you have two *cables*, one has 3 wires and the other has 2 wires.

I am fairly certain that the red was connected to black, but the variation is that I also had a small piece of wire (about 6 inches long) that somewhere was looped in. I am not sure what this would have been joining, and can't seem to find any potential ideas. Would this have joined the black from wire 1 to something else?
That short wire is likely an extension also called a *pigtail* and typically used to join 2 wires together within a wire nut ( marrette up here ) and terminate at a single point.
Unfortunately , without a little more detail it's difficult to say for certain which wires get connected to where.

Can you tell us what colour wires are connected to the wall switch for this light ?
Also, this is just a light without a ceiling fan and is there anything else that switch would control -- lights , receptacle ?

Do you have a multimeter for checking voltage ?
 
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Old 11-18-13, 02:39 PM
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Thanks for the response!

Ah yes, sorry bad description, two cables.

I did try to look at the switch, but it was nearly impossible to tell. This is connected to a 3 switch outlet, and it's quite the mess back there. I'll take another look at it to see if I can tell.

This is just a light, and as I say, there are 3 switches at the wall. One controls the light i'm working on only, one is the basement, and one is an outlet on the other side of the room. (maybe that helps?)

Unfortunately no multimeter, no.
 
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Old 11-18-13, 02:50 PM
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We need to know the color of the wires on the switch and if there is a bundle of white wires connected only to each other. You will probably need to pull the switches out as far as you can without disconnecting to get all the information.

Unfortunately no multimeter
Turn the breaker off, connect the light to the 2-conductor cable be sure the wires of the 3-conductor cable aren't touching anything (for safety you can cap them if you want), and turn the breaker back on. Does the light light at full brightness?
 
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Old 11-18-13, 03:05 PM
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This is just a light, and as I say, there are 3 switches at the wall. One controls the light i'm working on only, one is the basement, and one is an outlet on the other side of the room. (maybe that helps?)
Just curious --- with those wires disconnected in the ceiling is there anything else that's not powered ?
 
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Old 11-18-13, 03:22 PM
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Since you have a two wire and a three wire cable at the ceiling.

Most probable wire connections:
Connect both blacks together.
Connect both whites together.
Connect the light to the red and white wires.
 
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