Latest Discussions : Electrical & Lighting

Windycity

01:45PM | 08/18/07
Member Since: 08/17/07
2 lifetime posts
I am trying to install a fan and control both the fan and the light from a double switch. The wire goes as follows: In the ceiling I have a black, red, white and ground. I wired the fan black to black, white to white and red to blue. In the wall I have a single gange with a black, red, white and ground wire. I bought a double switch that has two "common" connection screws and two "SP" connectino screws.Is it possible to wire this switch with these wires to control both the fan and the light? (please excuse the lack of correct electrical teminology)

Thanks

Billhart

02:27PM | 08/18/07
Member Since: 04/25/05
1915 lifetime posts
What you have won't work.

Either you did not give all of the details or it is more involved.

You need a source of power.

Are there any other wires or cables in the ceiling box?

How was the existing ceiling light connected?

Are there any other wires or cables in the switch box?

How was the existing wall switch connected?

Did the wall switch also control a wall receptacle(s)?

Windycity

03:35PM | 08/18/07
Member Since: 08/17/07
2 lifetime posts
Thank you for your reply.

The black wire coming out of the wall is hot(I think). The red and white are not.

The wires in the ceiling come straight through a beam and I have not looked up in the attic.The only wires that come out of the beam are the black, red, white and ground.

The existing fixture was just a fan without a light. The black and white were connected to the fan and the red was capped with a wire nut.

The only wires coming out of the switch box are the black, white, red and ground (a 12/3 I believe it is called).

Unfortunately I took out the switch a while back and did not label the wires (lesson learned)

I believe the wall switch was a dimmer switch used to control the fan speed. It does not control another receptacle (that I know of)

The house was built in 1980 and I have come across some interestint wiring methods. I have been told by electricians that have come out that everything is to code. There are two fans that I am replacing each with the same set up I have mentioned. I was also told that they may have wired the fan for power up in the ceiling and than ran a "leg" down to the wall switch.

Thanks again

Billhart

08:45PM | 08/18/07
Member Since: 04/25/05
1915 lifetime posts
" I was also told that they may have wired the fan for power up in the ceiling and than ran a "leg" down to the wall switch."

That is what it appears. That power is feed to a junction box somewhere and from that juntion box one cable, a switch leg, to the switch and another cable to the ceiling box.

The problem is that many time switch leg wiring was not done correctly, at least with reguards to current code.

With current switch leg wiring the wire wire is the always hot. Also it is remarked, at both ends, with tape, marker, or paint to another color than white, gray, or green.

"The black wire coming out of the wall is hot(I think). The red and white are not. "

Do you have any reason to expect that it the black is hot other than it often is?

"The wire goes as follows: In the ceiling I have a black, red, white and ground. I wired the fan black to black, white to white and red to blue."

That sound correct based on what you have described.

One the dual switch you will have a pair of terminals that are tied gother with a jumper. That is the common connecct and you want to connect it to the "always hot".

One the other side you have two separate connections. One terminal for each switch part and they will conenct to the wires to the fan and light.

If the white is the always hot then it sould connect to the common temrinal.

And the black to one of the switch terminals and the red to the other one.

However, if the black is the common hot then it is connected to the common terminals. On the other side of the switch the red connects to one terminal and the white to the other one.


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