Latest Discussions : Electrical & Lighting


05:46PM | 11/27/01
Member Since: 11/26/01
3 lifetime posts
I installed the second of two cieling fans in an old home that I recently purchased. The first works fine. The second however, works only by the pull chains and not off the switch on the wall. I installed a different switch to ensure the first was working correctly, and the second does not work either. The ceiling has three wires, black (hot), white, and a brown wire. The fan has four wires, one black hot for the fan, one blue hot for the light, a white, and a ground wire. Currently, the black and blue are connected to the hot balck wire, the white to the white, and the grounds are not connected. Whe we tried to do so, it blew the fuse. Are we connecting the wiring wrong? and why does the switch not work the fan/light fixture? Thanks for your help.


09:38AM | 12/10/01
Member Since: 11/16/01
301 lifetime posts
Dear WC,
From the info you supplied, I would guess you are frome Europe. My reasoning is that in Europe, the brown wire is a ground, meaning " to earth". If so are you sure the fixtures you installed are 110 Volt and not 220V? Without more info I cannot diagnose your problem. But for a stab, check the wiring coming into the box and ascertain that there are no bare wiries touching the box, as this happens over a period of time.
Talk to me, Len


03:17PM | 12/24/01
Member Since: 11/14/00
333 lifetime posts
You might be from Europe or you just might have really old wire where the colors are different than usual or entirely meaningless.

The brown wire could be a "hot" wire that separately controls the fan or light. It also might be an unswitched "hot" wire that allows the light to be switched but the fan to continue blowing even when the light is turned off at the switch.

If the brown wire is an alternate "hot" wire, then connecting it to the ground wire of the fan that would cause a short.

In any case, determine which wire is connected to the switch. Use a tester on the brown and white wires to see if the brown is "hot." If so, then switch the switch off and test it to see if the switch is connected to it.

Also test the black wire to see if it is connected to the switch. (Turn it on, then touch the tester to the black and white wires to see if the tester glows. If so, then turn the switch off, then do it again to see if the tester then does not glow. If it does, then the black wire is switched.)

It is kosher to hook both the fan and the light up to the same hot wire coming into the box. That is not the problem.

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