I am in the process of replacing all of my ceiling fixtures in my
house. I am currently replacing one in the hall, there is a white,
black, red and ground. The only way the light will work is on the black
and white but it can not be controlled by the switch. Any suggestions?
Are the wires you mentioned coming into the ceiling electrical box or are
you talking about wires that came attached to the fixture? Also, what kind
of switch are you refering to......wall installed or integral to the
lighting unit you are installing?
The red wire is coming from a three switch box(wall installed) by the
front door - one for the entry, one for the porch light, one for a
light by the garage. The switch for the entry has the black power wire
and then a red wire into the ceiling box. The previous light was
connected to the Black wire and the red wire (granted it was an old
light) for the new fixture I connected the black to the black, the
white to the white - the light turned on but the switch would not turn
it on and off. when I connect the red to the white on the fixture the
light does not work at all.
Suggest you try connecting it as old one was- what made you decide not
to? Is there another switch controlling this light? If so, it needs
a switched hot, that's why it was connected to black and red. This is
common in hall (or staircase) fixtures, so they can be switched from
either end of hall.
Assuming what you referred to in your OP as the ceiling fixture in the
"hall" is the one "the switch for the entry" should be controlling, then
I suggest you first start checking for voltage on that switch. Connect a
test lamp from a neutral (white) lead to the black lead on that switch
and see if the lamp lights. If it does, move that lamp lead to the red
wire and see if the switch will turn it on and off.
If there's no power on the black wire to that switch find out why, you
may have a "loose disconnection" somewhere. If you do and the lamp won't
light, the switch is bad.
If the switch turns the the test lamp on and off when operated, then you
may have a break in that red wire going to the ceiling box (unlikely).
It was wired to a light fixture (circa 1973) that had nither black nor
white nor red wires, the black wires went to ine and the red to the
other. So from the new fixture (circa 2006) I hooked the black to the
black and the white to the red - no light - So i switched the white to
the white wire that was previously hanging from the electrical box and
had light but no switch control.
Steve Barker LT wrote:
I am very confuse now.
Please, how many wires are available at the ceiling box where the
What colors are they?
It would also help if you would pull the switch out enough to
identify the colors on the 2 terminals on the switch.
Keep the whole world singing. . . .
Light Switch - Black on one terminal red on the other
Electrical Box - Black, White, Red, Ground
Old fixture was connected to black and red with two copper wires from
New fixture connected black to black ad white to red - no light
New fixture connected black to black and white to white - light but no
see if black(fixture) to red (house) and white to white works. that is
what I would expect in your situation. white is always neutral, green
is always ground, most other colors are hot. when you have a black and
a red in the same box black is usually always hot and red is switched hot.
replace "fly" with "com" to reply.
I doubt that very much. Probably it was connected to white and red, and you
forgot -- it seems that you didn't take note of what was connected to what,
before you took the old one out.
No surprise there: you've connected both sides of the light fixture to hot
wires. No current can flow between two points that are at the same voltage.
No surprise there either: you have the neutral side of the fixture connected
properly, and the hot side connected to a wire that's hot all the time, and
not controlled by the switch.
Try connecting white to white, and black to red -- and next time, pay
attention to what's connected where, and label them, before you disconnect
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
He sounds 100% right. It is hard us tell from here, but if you take a
voltage tester and check, the black should be hot all the time and the
red should be controlled by the switched.
I think you were mistaken about the original connection.
The fan should have the same 3 colors. Do red/red black/black
On 2 Dec 2006 16:18:45 -0800, email@example.com wrote:
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