Light Switch Won't Turn Ceiling Fan/Light On/Off


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Old 03-26-14, 04:08 PM
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Light Switch Won't Turn Ceiling Fan/Light On/Off

Hello, I have read other posts from people with similar issues, but everyone's wiring setup seems to be slightly different than mine.

I have 1 black and 1 white insulated together. I have another black uninsulated by itself. I also have the green ground wire.

I wired the following together:

2 blacks from ceiling connected to black and blue from fan.

1 white from ceiling connected to white from fan.

All grounds connected.

What could I possibly have wired up wrong? Thanks!
 
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Old 03-26-14, 04:28 PM
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You have only told us about half the circuit. Wiring is based on the whole circuit. What is the wiring at the switch.
I have 1 black and 1 white insulated together.
Do you mean a cable(two or more wires in a metallic or non metallic sheath)? if so then:
I have another black uninsulated by itself. I also have the green ground wire.
doesn't make sense because that sounds like conduit. Normally you won't find conduit and cable mixed in the same box. Can you post a picture: http://www.doityourself.com/forum/li...-pictures.html

Are you in Philadelphia?
 
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Old 03-26-14, 05:07 PM
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There are no cable assemblies made with only one conductor, and none made with two black wires in the same assembly. There is very seldom a green insulated grounding conductor in a cable assembly, but there are exceptions.

Please describe each wire and each cable or conduit in the ceiling. Please also describe the wiring at the switch, as Ray requested. From there we should be able to help you troubleshoot and correct the problem.

Are you replacing a ceiling fan or installing one to replace an existing light fixture, or is this a new location where there wasn't either a fan or a light fixture before?
 
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Old 03-26-14, 05:47 PM
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Hopefully you can make sense of my pictures.

In the light switch picture, you can see 3 black wires tied together. One is coming from the wall, one looks like it is going up to the fan (the insulated one I was talking about) and the third goes into the top of the switch. The black wire from the bottom of the switch is the uninsulated one that goes to the fan. You will also see 2 whites tied off and not connected to the switch. Should they be connected to the light switch? They were like that before I replaced switch and ceiling fan and the switch controlled the fan/light just fine.

At the fan, you'll see the green grounds, the white from the "switch" tied off to the white at the fan, and the 2 blacks from the switch tied off with the black and blue from the fan.
 
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Old 03-26-14, 06:05 PM
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The two whites at the switch are your neutral. They are fine.We need to see the ceiling box from a different angle to see if you have conduit. We need to see how the black and green enter. I hate to ask but if you could disconnect the fan and let us see just the box and the wires coming into it.
 
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Old 03-26-14, 06:19 PM
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You will also see 2 whites tied off and not connected to the switch.
I see what appears to be two white wires spliced together, with the splice protected by a wire nut. That's the neutral (grounded) conductor being spliced through, as Ray said.
 
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Old 03-26-14, 08:27 PM
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Why this is confusing: Individual wires not part of a cable must be part of a complete circuit in conduit. The switch box is non metallic. Non metallic boxes can't be used with metallic conduit and most residential conduit is metallic. If it is conduit there must be at least a hot and neutral in the conduit but you don't have that. It appears someone ran individual wires outside of a raceway (conduit or sheath) and that is a code violation. Just guessing at this point. We need the additional information requested.
 
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Old 03-27-14, 06:52 AM
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Did this ever work? Or have you made any changes? Could be a bad switch you could eliminate the switch by first shutting the power off and removing the 2 black wires from the switch and wire nutting them together and see if the fan works then, if so replace the switch.
Geo
 
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Old 03-28-14, 01:32 PM
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Problem solved. Instead of putting each black wire into those little holes in the back of the switch, I connected them to the two screws on the side. I also switched them so the one that was connected to the bottom of the switch is now connected to the top of the switch and vice versa. Not sure which one actually solved the problem or if it was both, but in either case, this makes me happy. Thank you all for the help!
 
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Old 03-28-14, 02:55 PM
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Switching the terminals would have no effect. Using the terminal screws instead of the back-stab holes is what resolved it.

Often - commonly - the case.

Thanks for letting us know how you got it fixed.

Now, what's up with that single black wire?
 
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Old 03-30-14, 12:35 PM
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As for the single black wire, I'm not sure. It just goes from the switch to the fan. Maybe it's usually a different color??
 
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Old 03-30-14, 02:31 PM
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Maybe it's usually a different color??
That's not the point. The point is that there should not be a single wire outside of a raceway* (sheath, conduit, tray). What is it connected to on each end.

*Only exception would be a green or bare wire to the main panel.
 
 

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