Sigh. Where does the red wire go?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Wolf mom, Jan 27, 2007.

  1. Wolf mom

    Wolf mom Well-Known Member

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    :help: I'm hanging a ceiling fan. :help:

    I have a black, a white and red wire plus a green (ground) wire coming from the ceiling.

    The fan has a black, a white and a black with white stripe (plus a green) wire coming from it.

    The fan has a pre-wired light. It will be on a wall switch & I will have to turn the light on by the chain (single switch wiring?)

    I know black to black, white to white BUT what do I do with the red wire and the black with white stripe one ? :shrug:

    Do they go together or do they get hooked up with the black wire from the fan??

    Directions don't show red wires - neither does my 'how to' book.

    No, I am not color blind!
     
  2. idahodave

    idahodave Well-Known Member

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    Look for the other end of the red wire in the box that has the fan switch. It could be unconnected in the box. Someone may have planned ahead and provided a second wire for a switched light on the fan. Just leave it.

    Check the fan instructions for the black with white. I think it's for the light. If that's the case, connect it with the two black wires.
     

  3. YuccaFlatsRanch

    YuccaFlatsRanch Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Look at the switch and see if the red wire is connected. Chances are that someone just used 4 wire (R, B, W, Ground) instead of 3 wire when they wired the circuit. 4 wire is usually used if there are going to be more than one switch in the circuit and it is used as the "traveler" - i.e. connects the 2 switches together..
     
  4. Wolf mom

    Wolf mom Well-Known Member

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    Clarification:

    The light accessory has a bunch of wires (including red) going into a plug that plugs into the bottom of the fan, (like a trailer hitch electrical plug in.)
    Therefore I believe the red wire is hot(?) & must be connected. Somewhere. Where?

    If that gets connected with the black wire from the ceiling & the black wire from the fan, where does the black with white stripe wire go?

    There are no electrical wiring instructions on the Hunter fan directions. Just "wiring must meet local electrical codes".

    Sorry to be suck a worry wort. Once I tried to replace a circuit breaker (has to be simple, right) & sorta blew it up. :p
     
  5. leoaloha

    leoaloha Well-Known Member

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    Be carefull with electric

    That said, generally a red wire to a light switch would be used in a three way ( where two switches controlled one light ) see http://www.the-home-improvement-web.com/information/how-to/three-way-switch-option1.htm
    Look to see if there is another controlling switch. Another possibility is that some one used the three w/g (white, Black, Red ) cable to supply power in some fasion to the fan and separately to the light

    hope this helps

    L
     
  6. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    I ran into a similar wiring setup but it was in a mobile home. The red wire was to send power on to another circuit.
     
  7. CatsPaw

    CatsPaw Who...me?

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    If I were called in as an electrician for this job (which I have been plenty of times) I would not be surprised to see the red wire.

    If there had been a fan with a light on the ceiling or just the light, and a single switch, someone planned ahead.

    I would expect to see black, red, white, and copper in the ceiling and in the switchbox.

    Black w/white stripe is the light (99% probability).

    I would look inside the switchbox. If I found the 3-wire (black, red, white and ground), I would expect to see one of two situations. Red left unconnected, with the black connected to the switch...or....black and red nutted together to a pigtail, with the pigtail connected to the switch. If the later, I know the other black connected to the switch is power in.

    If the former, I would heat up the red and test it at the ceiling to verify the continuity. If good, and I was limited to the single switch, I would do the later as stated above. Then connect the black to black, red to black w/stripe, and the rest at the fan.

    I might install an over/under switch. Connect power to the switch, black to one sw, red to the other sw. Seperate fan and light switches. same as above for the fan.

    pretty common setup.