Greetings! If I happen to cross my black/white wires (UF 12 gauge, 2
wire w/ground) when connecting the UF feed to my lamp, would the
breaker trip without the light turning on, or would the lamp light,
but then trip the breaker?
I have a situation where the lamp is lighting for ~ 1 second before it
trips the breaker....wiring looks OK. Underground short?
What exactly did happen and when? What do you mean (cross the wires)
If you short the black and white (or black and ground) the breaker should
trip right then.
If you have the lamp connected it would be on until you shorted the
wires and then it might go out all at once or it may dim for that very short
time before the breaker tripped.
If you mean you hooked up the black wire to the wrong connection at the
light and likewise the with the white wire, normally nothing would happen
except you would need to be far more careful when replacing lamps since the
treaded part of the lamp and socket would be hot to ground and could kill
If you have a dusk to dawn lamp then you have the added complication of
the light sensing controller.
If the circuit is on a GFI then you have yet another factor we need to
We need more detailed information.
Note: It would be best if you leave this project alone and be sure the
power is off for now. From your question and information provided, it
sounds like you might not be the best person to take on this project.
Thanks for the reply. The lamp post has been inactive, but presumably
in a working state (all existing wiring remained unchanged by me). I
only added a new lamp to the post to get it working again (and wired
Black to black, white/white, ground/ground - pretty straightforward).
The problem shows when I flip the switch, the lamp lights briefly, and
then goes off. Basement breaker is tripped at that point. There is no
GFI in the circuit...Breaker resets OK until switch flipped again. I'm
just wondering if the most likely scenario is an underground short
(perhaps from edging or aerating), or if my black/white could be
crossed at the panel, or maybe the new lamp itself.
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