Recessed Lighting Newb Help

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Old 07-11-14, 02:23 PM
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Recessed Lighting Newb Help

Hi Guys,

First time home owner trying to figure things out. I have recessed ceiling (4) lighting that recently stopped working. At first, I assumed the bulbs needed to be re-placed however strange for 4 to stop at the same time. Didn't help. I checked the fuse box and nothing is tripped. All of the other appliances/other lighting plugged into this fuse continue to work.

Then I thought perhaps the sockets in the lighting needed to be replaced. I replaced one to test and it still does not work.

I have a simple non contact voltage detector and the switch and all sockets are getting hot power.

Sorry if this doesn't make much sense, I am not electrical savvy. Any advice would be appreciated. thank you.
 
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Old 07-11-14, 02:41 PM
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I have a simple non contact voltage detector and the switch and all sockets are getting hot power.
You don't know that because a non contact tester often gives false positives. To test you need an analog not digital multimeter. A cheap $8-$15 one is fine.

What is the wiring at the switch?
 
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Old 07-11-14, 03:01 PM
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thanks! i'll pick an analog multimeter up.

the switch has two black wires on the right side, top and bottom. There is a copper color wire on the top left side. In the box there appears to be white wires with a connector cap.
 
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Old 07-11-14, 04:22 PM
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So from your switch description power comes in at the switch. That is where you need to check for power. A quick test though without a meter is to, with breaker off, remove the two black wires from the switch and wire nut together. Turn the breaker on. Do the lights work? if so the switch is bad.
 
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Old 07-11-14, 05:53 PM
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just tried the two black wires together and got nothing.
 
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Old 07-11-14, 06:48 PM
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Then time to use the multimeter. With the blacks disconnected check the voltage between each black and the neutral and between each black and the ground. One black should show ~120v to neutral and ground. Tip: Best to remove the wire nut on the neutrals for testing but leave them twisted together for testing.
 
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Old 07-11-14, 07:00 PM
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should the blacks be connected back to switch when i test? I assume the neutral are the whites tied together and the ground is the copper colored wire.

thank you.
 
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Old 07-11-14, 08:25 PM
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should the blacks be connected back to switch when i test?
And I wrote in post #6:
With the blacks disconnected check the voltage
 
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Old 07-12-14, 09:42 AM
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Bought an analog multimeter. I'm getting 120v from top black to white and 0 from bottom black to white.
 
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