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Electrical Wiring in the Home/2 of 3 lights now work after new light installed

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Question
Hi Bob,

I recently replaced 3 of 3 lights in a hallway with a on/off switch at each end of hallway.  I started with 2 lights replaced, but all 3 still worked. When I replaced the last one days later the replaced light worked along with one other one, but one that was working isnt now.

On the last light i replaced when removing the old fixture I noticed 2 wire cables coming in, each with a black wire and white wire (and a ground?). The black wires were twisted together and attached to fixtures black wire, and the white wires were twisted together and attached the the fixtures white wire. Then the ground was around the ground nut.

I hadnt seen this on any of the other 2 I orginally replaced.  Can you assist?  

Thanks so much!

Mark

Answer
Hi

Normally when something doesn't work, it's because a wire is loose in the wire nut or other place. You will probably need to remove the wire nuts and make sure all of the metal parts of the wire are touching.  If the wire for the light is stranded wire, you should take off more insulation so that the metal part of the stranded wire is longer than the metal part of the solid wire in the house wire.

With multiple lights and multiple switches, there are too many combinations to guess how it was wired.  As long as you wired them the same as it was, and make sure the connections are good, everything should work.

My guess, is at one light you are going to have a whole lot of wires.  Another light should have 2 cables plus the fixture wires, and the third will have one cable and the fixture wires.
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Bob Sponaugle

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Just about any home wiring question. (not appliance repair) I have done all kinds of home wiring for myself, including adding a new breaker box, etc. Please, questions from North America only. Please be specific with details.

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