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Replacing a light fixture which has a dimmer switch

Posted by isyss (My Page) on
Sat, Apr 16, 11 at 18:03

I am replacing a light fixture where there are red, black, white, and copper coming into the overhead box from the dimmer switch, additionally, there are also a black, white, and copper going out at another end of the box. In the recipticle, the two blacks are intertwined, the two whites are also intertwined, the two coppers are screwed into the box and the red stands alone.

The light fixture has black, white, and copper; I have attached the copper to the box, put white to the two whites, black to the two blacks, ignoring the red. Result? the light fixture comes on but cannot be turned off by the swithch.

I then tried white to white, black to black and red, Result? The light comes on but cannot be turned off by switch.

I then tried white to white, black to black and red, again the lights comes on but cannot be turned off by switch

I read on your site a similar situation where the answer was to ignore the black in the box, so I did the same by connecting the white to the white, and the black to the red, results? The light is off and cannot be turned on or off by the switch.

I think I have tried all the combinations with no results, the sad part is that I did remove the existing light a few days ago, and did not take note of the red wire as I am accustomed to only seeing the copper, black, and white. I must have disconnected the red from somewhere because there was a merrit on it but I just cannot remember. Next time I intend to simply cut off the leads from any existing fixture as a reminder as to what goes where. HELP!!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Replacing a light fixture which has a dimmer switch

The red wire carries the variable voltage and goes from the dimmer switch to the black wire of the fixture and that is the only connection made by those two wires. Canadian Tire has cheap analogue vom meters on sale every few months which are good for helping to sort out household work like this.


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RE: Replacing a light fixture which has a dimmer switch

Next time snap a pic or make a diagram before disassembling. You are working with a pretty large amount of energy here. Trying every possible combination can be hazardous to your health, or at least to the dimmer's.


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