Mini pendant lights on dimmer problem


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Old 08-21-17, 06:39 PM
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Mini pendant lights on dimmer problem

Hello, I'm replacing two mini pendant lights with two less-ugly mini pendant lights. They're on a dimmer switch.

After removing the old lights and noting how the wiring was set up before, I noticed that the new lights have a different wiring setup in their mounting cans. There are two neutral white wires, two black wires, and two red wires, as well as a bare copper ground. The installation instructions are worthless, and the work I've tried so far has failed (in that the lights do not come on at all, in any way).

I also noticed that of the two holes where the lights will be mounted, one of them has two white neutral wires and two black wires, and the other only has one of each. Does this affect things? I checked with the manufacturer and they assured me that the new lights can be used with a dimmer switch.

Sorry for such a basic question. I checked the bulbs and they're fine, and although I'm not a dunce and know which are the neutrals/hot wires/ground/etc., I'm at a loss for what I'm doing wrong here.

Can anyone inform me of which wires go to which?
 
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Old 08-21-17, 08:27 PM
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The red wires do not make any sense to me. Are these lights LED? Is there a driver that needs to be connected? Many times the load wires of the driver are colored red.
 
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Old 08-21-17, 09:33 PM
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I also noticed that of the two holes where the lights will be mounted, one of them has two white neutral wires and two black wires, and the other only has one of each. Does this affect things?
No..... the feed comes into the box with the two cables and then bridges over to the box with only one cable. This is common and not your problem.

A few posted pics of the light and its wiring could be helpful.
 
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Old 08-22-17, 05:50 AM
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Will definitely post pics when I get home this afternoon.
 
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Old 08-22-17, 04:15 PM
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Here are images of the wires I'm working with. I also realized my original post wasn't incorrect - I meant to say ONE neutral white, ONE black, and two red, as well as the ground.
 
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Old 08-22-17, 04:29 PM
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Pictures.

Is there a part number on the ballast ?
If I'm not mistaken.... the two red wires are for a remote dimming setup.

So in your application..... connect the white, black and ground.
Cap off or tape off the red wires.
 
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Old 08-22-17, 05:01 PM
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Pete, there is a part number on the ballast, yes. I've attached a picture.

unfortunately that arrangement is what I tried first, but I still can't get any light. Do both ballasts have to be installed simultaneously for things to work properly? I'm only working with the one right now and the other wires are capped off. They are connected to a dimmer switch that has three modes of brightness, but I don't really care if they dim or not. I'd just like them to turn on.
 
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Old 08-22-17, 05:10 PM
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I retwisted the wires just to make sure they were connected, and got one brief flash of light before it went dark again, and now there's a ticking sound coming from the switch?
 
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Old 08-22-17, 05:12 PM
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An even better picture, You have 12volt lamps.

The black and white wires connect to the white and black in the ceiling.
The red wires connect to the light sockets.

We only see the canopy in the picture. The pendant itself is 12v and its wiring connects to the reds. Since it's AC... there is no polarity.
 
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Old 08-22-17, 05:18 PM
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Excuse my extreme gnorance, but I'm not sure what you mean by connecting the reds to the "light sockets?" Do you mean the reds connect to the pendant wire?
 
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Old 08-22-17, 07:53 PM
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Do you mean the reds connect to the pendant wire?
Correct. THe black thing is a transformer that converts the 120 volts of the house wiring to likely 12 volts that the low voltage bulb uses. The black and white connect to the house black and white. The ground connects to the ground of the house wiring. The reds will connect to the braided cable of the pendant.

The pendant cable is actually two conductors. One is the outside braided jacket, the other is inside the braided jacket separated by a layer of insulation. If you take the end of pendant cable you should be able to slide the outside braided part down to see what I mean. Depending on the fixture you either need to separate the braided part from the inside part to make two "wires", or you need to cut the braided part shorter to connect the terminal end of the fixture. All this should be in the directions.

Note: in your trial and error you may have burned up the bulb by putting 120 volts to it.

If I'm not mistaken.... the two red wires are for a remote dimming setup
FYI - Normally for dimming (0-10v) the wires would be gray and purple.
 

Last edited by ray2047; 08-22-17 at 08:11 PM. Reason: but>by
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Old 08-23-17, 01:37 AM
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The pendant itself is 12v and its wiring connects to the reds.
Sorry.... thought I made it clear.
 
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Old 08-23-17, 05:22 AM
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You both have been so helpful! I'll give that a try this morning.
 

Last edited by khills; 08-23-17 at 06:00 AM.
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Old 08-23-17, 07:50 AM
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Well, with great hope I tried that this morning to no avail. White neutral to whites, blacks to black, reds to the braided and insulated wire from the pendant itself. I also changed out the bulb, but still no light. There's a repetitive buzzing sound now, which indicates energy is flowing, but I still have a problem somewhere.
 
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Old 08-23-17, 04:45 PM
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Using a multimeter measure the voltage on the red wires.
 
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Old 08-23-17, 05:12 PM
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A repetitive buzzing sounds like the transformer tripping on a short in the line to the light itself.

I would also try the lights without a dimmer in line. Connect the wires at the switch together or use a temporary standard single pole switch.
 
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Old 08-23-17, 07:50 PM
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Also make sure you have a good light bulb. If not then you likely killed the transformer and need a new one.
 
 

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