Fluorescent ceiling light to ordinary light (Kitchen)

Postby Pewterangel » Mon Aug 24, 2009 4:12 pm

Hello. Please help?

Removed the fluorescent light, revealed a waterfall of wiring as follows:

4 grey cables, consisting of

2 x black/red
1 x (red 2 wires)/earth
1 x black/red/earth

How please does this little lot get wired into a black/red/earth fitting?

Several attempts have led to the light being on and unable to turn off. I have read a previous forum post and reply of 07/07/09 from el_stig on a similar matter, but I seem to have more wires, I think.

Also, er, how do I secure any cables I don't use so that they're fireproof?

Many thanks
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Simply Build It

Postby kbrownie » Tue Aug 25, 2009 7:32 am

Hello and welcome

First of all isolate circuit the follow these steps below

Step 1) All earths to earth terminal on fitting

Step 2) 2xblack and red cable; both the reds in plastic terminal block seperate to fitting terminals may need to buy this.
both the blacks to neutral(black) terminal on fitting

Step3) 1xblack and red cable; the red to plastic connection block with the 2 reds in step 2 and the black in the neutral terminal again as step 2.

So we now have all earths terminated to earth terminal
three reds in plastic connection block
three blacks to neutral terminal on fitting

Step 4) 2 red cable; one red to plastic connection block and final red to live(red) terminal on fitting these two cables are feed and return of the switch so could be either way round to work.
you should be working now, any problems please reply ASAP
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Postby Pewterangel » Tue Aug 25, 2009 11:34 am

Kbrownie thank you so much. I haven't done it yet but feel like a weight lifted. Such a relief. Will let you know how it goes.
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Postby Pewterangel » Wed Aug 26, 2009 11:49 pm

Ah. Knowing how to do it and doing it are not mutually compatible.

It's a bit more difficult than I thought standing at the top of a ladder, arms above head dealing with the tiniest screws I've ever seen.

Guess I'd better get a professional in after all, they must be natural born contortionists as well as electricians.

Thank you so much KB for your help and advice; apologies for my inability to actually do it.

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Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2009 3:53 pm

Postby blazorax01 » Thu Aug 27, 2009 4:31 am

Hi Gentlemen / Ladies.

I have a similar issue I want to replace the old light bulb with a new fluorescent light in the kitchen and when i took down the light bulb socket. I saw heaps of wiring.

Current setup ... 1 switch ... turn on/off both lights in the kitchen area.

I want to replace one light with a flourescent light and terminate the other.

So I turn off the circuit breaker ...took down one of the light bulb socket test the wire and make sure that it is not live anymore.

From the ceiling came 3 sets of cables

2 x red/black/greenstripewhite
1 x red/white

from the ceiling to lightbulb sockets ... 3 RED cables are in RED socket ... 2 BLACK cables are in black socket, 2 GREEN cables with white stripe are in green socket .... and that left a WHITE into spare socket

I had a look at the Flourescent light and saw only 3 sockets instead of 4.


how would I go about connecting these up? I have no idea where the WHITE cable suppose to go. Initially I connect the all the RED cables to RED, the 2 GREEN cables to GREEN, and the 2 BLACK cables to BLACK.

That left out the white. I tried to connect the WHITE to BLACK as well but the light is constantly on no matter which switch setting.

I would like to understand this better. If you could provide some guidance it would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you very much for your time.
Last edited by blazorax01 on Thu Aug 27, 2009 10:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby blazorax01 » Thu Aug 27, 2009 10:16 pm

Hi Again

I think I solved it. Thanks to the diagram you had in the project pages. I finally understood the circuit.

Before I did anything .... I make sure that I test all cable to see which is LIVE using a cable voltage tester. Then turn off the house light circuit breaker. Test cable again to make sure that there are no LIVE current before proceeding with anywork.

From all the investigation, I found out that the cable with RED and WHITE is the one that went to the light switch

So just incase someone is having the same issue as i did. Here it is what I did.

1. All RED join together with a connector .
2. All BLACK join together with a connector.
3. All GREEN join together with a connector.

That leave a WHITE cable.

Get a new cable so that you can joint to the existing connectors above. From this new cable ...

4. Joint the RED to the WHITE cable above
5. Join the GREEN to the GREEN connector above in step 3
6. Join the BLACK to the BLACK connector above in step 2

Now connect the other end of this new cable to the flourescent light

RED into RED socket
GREEN into GREEN socket
BLACK into BLACK socket

now turn on the circuit break and test the light switch :) ...

Even though I yet to get any reply to my questions, but I do thank you for all the material this web site provided. It helped me heaps.

Once again thx every1 :)
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Postby kbrownie » Fri Aug 28, 2009 6:21 am

white core conductors not normally used in domestic installation within the UK, and earths are yellow and green but was green many years ago. What you have done should be okay, but again if enough space in the light fitting it's self, I terminate everthing to the fitting terminals, other than the line(reds) and switch feed which I connect into plastic connection block, as you have done.
Good to see you have took time to identify cables and done safe isolation on circuit. A lot don't
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Postby petervl » Sat Aug 29, 2009 7:45 pm

Does changing these fittings require notification or self certification under part P?

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Postby kbrownie » Mon Aug 31, 2009 7:53 am

[quote="petervl"]Does changing these fittings require notification or self certification under part P?


Hi peterv and welcome.
Replacing and refixing electrical fittings, is not covered by notifiable work under part p. So that being the case it's not notifiable, so self cert not required. However non notifiable work, does still need to comply to part p and relevant standards.

A lot of stuff is and a valid question but it is okay to replace/refix accessories. If a new circuit was being installed it's a different matter or a circuit being added to within a kitchen or special location (bath/shower room, swim pool etc..)
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Postby lepoisson » Wed Sep 02, 2009 5:20 pm

Hi All

I have a similar situation to Pewterangel with regard to replacing flourescent light to discover 4 cables coming down from ceiling with no indication which pair might be for the ring and presumably which pair for the switch.

Unfortunately, all four cables present 1 black, 1 red, 1 green/yellow each. I read one of the great responses from kbrownie but his response to Pewter seemed to indicate that the cable for the switch should present 2 red cables only making it obvious which needed to be presented to the fitting.

short of lots of trial and error with a voltmeter is there any other way of distinguishing what goes where?
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Postby kbrownie » Thu Sep 03, 2009 11:04 pm

Some switch wires a paired with reds conductor colours, it was the right way to do it, but not that often done. Electricians would settle for useing T&E with red and black core colours marking the black cable with red tag/flag.

If you have multimeter, you can test for continuity between the switch wires to determine which they are.

Isolate circuit test circuit is dead prior to work.
May need someone to operate switch for you,
so you then go to cables at ceiling with multi and seperate the four cables then test across a red and black pair, using probes with someone switching the switch on and off. the pair you get a reading at then not as switch is switched. Will identify your switch cables.
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