Home Improvement Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for contractors and serious DIYers. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have installed three lights (60 Watt Bulbs) on the same line (wire) connected to one light switch. The fuse blew when I hit the switch. I’ve connected all of the white to white and black to black. I believe the problem may be with the ground. I’ve grounded each light fixture. I believe that I was just supposed to pig tail the ground to the ground in each light fixtures and only affix the actual ground wire in the switch box to the green ground nut. Is that correct? An informed response would be greatly appreciated!

share|improve this question
A blown fuse doesn't necessarily mean a short circuit. It only means there is too much current for the fuse, and cable to handle. This may be because of a short circuit, or just too much load. – Brad Gilbert Mar 12 '12 at 14:33

Unless you connected a hot to ground, it probably is not related to the ground. Without seeing some pictures or diagrams, my best guess is that one of your white wires is actually a hot (and someone didn't mark it as so), so by connecting the whites (which are supposed to be neutral) together, you've created a short.

Sometimes with switches, when the power comes into the ceiling box first, there will be one cable to the switch from the ceiling box. In this configuration you will find a black and white wire, but both are actually hot since the switch only interrupts the hot wire. Take a look at the switch wiring - are both wires black, or is one black and one white? If one black and one white, then one of your white wires is actually hot and should not be connected to the rest of the white (neutral) wires.

I would start by disconnecting your work, verifying the fuse doesn't blow in this configuration and then start connecting the lights back up at one at a time.

Remember that electricity is dangerous and there's nothing wrong with calling an electrician if you are in over your head!

share|improve this answer

Following up on what @Steven mentioned. I am not entirely sure of your level of proficciency however i have included two diagrams that illustrate the point he was making and two of the ways it can be wired. The first is how i assume it would be wired however in older houses you can easily find that it is wired too the light first as is shown in second image

First Example

And here we have the second example which is more common in older dwellings

Second Example

share|improve this answer
White switch wire should be on the light side (neutral potential when "off"), connection 4. black wire should be on L1 side, connection 1 (always hot). Also white wire should be "flagged" with either black or red tape indicating it is now a hot leg. – SteveR Mar 12 '12 at 12:15

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.