05:26PM | 05/18/06
Member Since: 05/17/06
2 lifetime posts
I'm installing a ceiling fan. The wires coming out of the ceiling are red, yellow and white. I determined the yellow wire is the hot wire and the white wire is cool. What is the red wire? it seems to come out of the ceiling connect to itself then go back up into the ceiling. Also where does the green ground wire connect from the ceiling fan housing?


08:19AM | 05/19/06
Member Since: 04/25/05
1915 lifetime posts
If there is a green or bare wire box then the fan ground connects to that. Howver, based on the color of the wires my guess is that the house is wired with metal conduit and has a metal box. If this is true then there will be a hole in the box that is tapped for a use with a Green ground screw (readily available in the electrical supply department of any hardware/box store).

The while wire is not "cool" or "cold". Normally it is the grounded conductor. But it can be a hot in a switch leg (for cable), inwhich case it is suppose to be remakred with tape or marker. And more than once I have seen the circuit miss wired so that the white is switched and will be "hot" when switch is OFF.

Ceiling boxes are often wired with an extra wire so that later fans can be installed and the switch replaced with a fan controller and you have independent control of the light and fan.

However the 3rd wire would stop in the ceiling box.

We need more details.

How many conduits are connected to the ceiling box, what wires are in each one, and which are connected to which. Also which wires where the old ceiling light connected to?

Also open up the switch box and give the same information. And include which wires are connected to the switch.


07:15PM | 05/20/06
Member Since: 05/17/06
2 lifetime posts
there are 3 conduits coming from the ceiling. The lamp I took down had a black and a white wire. The black wire was connected to a yellow/gold wire from the ceiling box. The white lamp wire was connected to a off white/tanish colored wire from the box.

Then there is a red wire that comes from the ceiling box connects to another red wire and goes back up into the ceiling.

On the switch box...there is a yellow/gold and a red wire connected to the switch with the yellow on the top or in the top hole.

In the ceiling box there is a large screw about the size of a "dime" at the top of the box, could this be the ground screw?


09:14PM | 05/20/06
Member Since: 04/25/05
1915 lifetime posts
The ground screw, if installed, will be greenish in color. It will have a 5/16" hex head, but also will take a philips screw driver (and sloted and square drive). Older ones might not take the same combination of screw drivers.

If that is not what you are seeing then look for a hole tapped for 10-32 screw. That is for the grounding screw.

You did not give enough details to tell you exactly what is going on. IE, what wires are in each conduit and what is connected to what.

But it appears that the one conduit is power in, one is power out to the next fixture or receptacle, and the 3rd one is to the switch.

And it appears that the red is the hot lead, and the yellow is the switched hot.

You have several options how to connect the fan.

If you want independent control of the fan and the light from the wall siwtch then you need to pull a 3rd wire and get a combination fan/light control unit.

Or you can get a "remote control" system that comes with a fan/light controll switch that can work with the 2 wires and a contoller part that mounts in the ceiling box.

Or if you don't needed independent control then you can connect both the fan hot (typically black) and the light hot (typically blue) both to the yellow wire. In that case you would use the pull switches on the fan to control both the lights and the fan.

The last option would be to connect the fan hot to the red wires and the light hot to the the yellow wire. Then the standard wall switch will control the lights and the fan is controlled ony by the fan pull switch.



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