Ceiling Fixture Wiring Question

Can someone tell me how to properly wire a ceiling light in the following situation:
I have a ceiling fixture with 3 pairs of wires coming in to it, plus a single red wire.
I have determined that:
A. One black and white pair + the red goes to the wall switch B. One black and white pair goes to a wall outlet C. One black and white pair is coming from the breaker ("C" is an assumption I haven't tested that yet)
When I flip the breaker for this fixture, the adjacent bathroom and the next bedroom lose power. My guess is they are fed from the "B" wall outlet
When I removed a ceiling fan from this fixture All the black wires are taped together, and all the white wires are taped together. At the switch the black wires are tied together with one wire coming from that bundle and going to the switch. The white wires were all tied together. The red wire is connected to the switch. HOWEVER in the 8 years we've been in the house, the switch never controlled the ceiling fan or any of the wall outlets (the house is 66 years old).
Can someone tell me if it is possible to safely wire this switch and ceiling fixture so that the switch controls the light, the wall outlet in the bedroom with the ceiling fixture is always hot, and the adjacent bathroom and bedroom are always hot, too. If this is possible, what do I need to do?
Thanks in advance for any assistance you can offer.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
It sounds as though you only need to connect a ceiling fixture to the single red wire and to the group of white wires in the the ceiling box.. If the previously installed fan never worked, than there may be (Or may have been) a problem somewhere. You didn't mention what wires the ceiling fan was connected to.
It might also be possible that the feed from the circuit breaker begins at the switch and then feeds the rest of the rooms mentioned.
I suggest that you get a pigtail lamp socket and a bulb and start by connecting it to the red and whites in the ceiling box. If it doesn't work check the switch by disconnecting it and splicing the black and red wire together.
Do not disconnect the bundles of blacks and whites. They are feeding the other rooms.
John Grabowski http://www.mrelectrician.tv

assumption
next
and
is
the
ceiling
do?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Yes, it is possible, and it would probably be easy. However you first need to draw a schematic diagram of how it all goes together. You should know how power is coming from the circuit breaker, ie through the switch, or directly to the fixture. Start by looking at the switch to see if more wires lead away from that, and try to sort out where they go. Shut off the circuit and test everything nearby to be as sure as you can about what else is on that circuit. To tell where power is coming from, you could carefully unhook one black feeder wire (breaker off!), then turn the breaker back on and see what still works. Once you understand how it works you won't really need a lot of help to decide what to do next. With a good schematic the rest is obvious. If in doubt, consult a home wiring textbook to find a similar circuit.
As a guess, I recon that the red wire is probably hot when the switch is on, so it would usually go to the brass screw of the fixture (or black fixture wire), and white would connect to all the white wires and pigtail to the silver screw (or white fixture wire). However a guess is not really good enough without a proper schematic diagram.
Your comment that the switch didn't seem to control the fixture is a little puzzling. Are you saying that the switch has never been functional? If so, do you think the previous owner hooked it up incorrectly? Or does that switch do something else....
Dave

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Thanks for the reply John and Dave
RE: the non-functioning wall switch: The ceiling fan works, but I would prefer to have a light instead. It was my guess that whomever installed the fan, wired the wall switch so that it always made the ceiling fixture hot, so that the pull chain switch on the fan controlled the fan, and not the wall switch. Does that seem like a reasonable theory? I hadn't considered that the switch itself might be bad.
I did use a little voltage tester (a tool with a small bulb in it to indicate if a circuit is hot or not). When I placed the one lead of the tester on the black wire connected to the switch, and the other lead to the red wire connected to the switch, the tester bulb only glowed with 1/2 the usual intensity. I should have tested with my VOM meter to see how much current was going through, but had to call it quits for the day. Does the 1/2 intensity mean anything?
Anyway, I'll take your advice, flip the circuit breaker to kill power to the wiring, and work on outlining a wiring diagram.
Thanks again for the help..
Kenn

following
switch
wire
bathroom
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Fixed it - thanks John and Dave.
Drawing the diagram helped. Both of you were right, the light fixture white wire connected to the group of pigtailed white wires, the black fixture wire connected to the red wire, and all other blacks coming into the box pigtailed together.
Thanks again for the help

the
are
bundle
house,
(the
to
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Site Timeline

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.