Electrical Wiring in the Home/Dim light

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Question
Hi Bill

I recently added a recessed light to an existing circuit. I tied the white wires together in the switch box with a wire nut, and connected the 2 black wires to the switch.  When I turn on the switch only one of the 2 lights on the circuit light up (the one with the lowest watt bulb). The recessed light with the higher watt build only barely glows very faintly. I swapped the bulbs and confirm that both lights work, but as I said, only the one with the lower wattage. If I pull one of the bulbs out neither light works. I have checked my white wires to ensure they are properly connected and the are. I at this point am at a loss. I would appreciate any help!  Thank you!

Regards
Jeff

Answer
Hi Jeff,

It sounds like you made a series circuit. Like old fashion Christmas tree lights. Take one bulb out and the whole string goes out.


I don't think you have the right wires in the switch box. I would remove your wire from the switch and put it back the way you found it. What you wire into is called a switch leg. It is only the hot wire no neutral wire.

To add the additional light you can run you wire to the existing light and match the black and whites together.  
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Electrical Wiring in the Home

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Bill Lutz

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Any questions about being an electrician or doing electrical work. I can help advise people on their wiring needs, what kind of outlets and switcher to use, explain what an electrical service is and how their breakers work. I can also help them with their lighting needs. . I CAN HELP YOU UNDERSTAND WHAT YOUR LOOKING AT.

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My Father apprenticed to his Father-and I apprenticed to mine, repeating an invaluable tradition of child labor and a great place to learn a trade. Beginning at the age of 13, I worked with my dad every weekend and summer vacation in homes throughout Philadelphia repairing and rewiring all levels of residential electrical systems. Studying electrical engineering and earning a degree in architecture has given me a solid advantage in solving the myriad of residential electrical problems. Generation 3 Electrical, Inc. takes pride in every job - building confidence by how we do things - by being prompt, thorough and leaving every job site finished and clean.

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