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AssuredElectrical
AssuredElectrical, Master Electrician
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 4241
Experience:  Contractor-42+ Years in the ElectricalTrade
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In a junction box light switch two lines are maried to

Customer Question

In a junction box for a light switch two lines are maried to connect to an outlet . My switch went bad and when I tried to replace it I had no power to the light I checked the breaker and it was fine so I started to check the wires. I found the ground wire to be hot and the red wire that went to my switch was dead. I do not want to wire the switch with the ground being a supply wire. Any ideas?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Electrical
Expert:  AssuredElectrical replied 1 year ago.
Welcome. My name is ***** ***** would be glad to assist.
Thanks for the details, lets verify a few items.
1. How many wires total in the switch box?
2. What are all their colors?
3. Is the outlet in the same box as the switch?
4. What type of tester do you have?
One with 2 leads and a readout or light are needed for troubleshooting.
Let me know and we can continue,
Thanks
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Two sets, The first set has a white black and a bare ground . The second set has white black and red And a ground . The two white wires are connected with a twist on connector . The two black wires are connected the same way as well . The ground wires are twisted to gather . The Redwire is by selfThe meter I'm using has two leaves and the readout
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The switch and the outlet are not in the same box . When I break the connection of the white wires the outlet goes dead
Expert:  AssuredElectrical replied 1 year ago.
Ok, thanks.
With the meter, use one lead to ground and one lead to the two blacks while they are tied together and see the voltage
use one lead to the whites and one lead to the two blacks while they are tied together and see the voltage
use one lead to ground and one lead to the two whites while they are tied together and see the voltage
Lets see what the numbers are and we can move forward from there.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Black to ground reads 117 .White to ground reads zero
Expert:  AssuredElectrical replied 1 year ago.
Ok, I do not see the white to black reading?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
White to black is 117
Expert:  AssuredElectrical replied 1 year ago.
Ok, thanks.
So, what exactly is the issue here?
Just wanting to change the switch?
The numbers indicate all the wiring is good and normal.
Blacks together have power and you would have a third wire connected to both of them to jumper to the switch on one screw
The red would connect to the 2nd screw on the switch.
That would operate the light on the red wire which is a normal setup.
Does the light not work?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Jumping off the black and connecting the red to the switch I do not get power To the switch
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Black to read on my meter reads zero
Expert:  AssuredElectrical replied 1 year ago.
Ok,
Can you post a picture of the wiring?
Based on your readings, if you connect the 3 black wires together, it has to have power, so there must be a loose connection.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I have checked for loose connections and not found any
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I get a positive read of 117 when I connect the black to the ground but I get nothing if I go ground to red or black to red
Expert:  AssuredElectrical replied 1 year ago.
Ok, jumper looks good.
So, the black has power
Connect the black and red to the switch
Then with the switch ON, read the red to ground and see if there is not the same 117 volts as the black
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Black the ground with the switch on raids 117 . Read to ground with the switch on reads 92
Expert:  AssuredElectrical replied 1 year ago.
Ok, the switch has bad contacts inside and needs to be removed with a new one.
It is a bad switch, even new ones today can be faulty.
Do not use the plug in the back connections, only use the side screws
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I just tried a switch from a different outle I just tried a switch from a different box that was working and that did not work either
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
So a used switch That worked five minutes ago and my brand-new one neither one work
Expert:  AssuredElectrical replied 1 year ago.
Ok,
Do this please.
Disconnect the black and red wire from the switch.
Now, tie the black wire to the red wire.
Turn on power and see if the light comes on.
Let me know how it goes.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Nothing
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Then when I run a test from the switch to the ground I get a positive reading of 117
Expert:  AssuredElectrical replied 1 year ago.
Ok,
First, be sure the 2 white wires in the switch box are connected tight and have good copper to copper contact.
If they are connected tight and good contact, then you Need to check the light fixture.
Make sure the bulbs are good first.
Check them in a lamp to be sure they are good.
If they check good, drop the fixture and check the connections.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
It's the fixture.Thanks
Expert:  AssuredElectrical replied 1 year ago.
Very good,
was starting to get concerned on the cables which very rare.
Glad all is well now.

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