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I am removing an old ceiling fan and installing a new ceiling fan. It’s my fault, I didn’t pay close enough attention when I was taking the old one off, but I ended up with two white neutral wires. I have the two black wires one of which is always hot and then the two white neutral wires. My understanding is that one of those is not actually neutral. The black tape on the second wire is mine, it was not there, it’s merely to show me that that wire is bundled with the “hot” black wire. How should this wire into the fan?

  • Is the fan controlled by a wall switch?
    – JACK
    Feb 22, 2020 at 22:21
  • Can you post photos of the inside of the switch box please? I have suspicions that something's not quite right here.... Feb 22, 2020 at 23:08
  • Besides ground, how many wires did the old fan have? Feb 22, 2020 at 23:43
  • do you have a resistance meter?
    – Jasen
    Feb 22, 2020 at 23:58

1 Answer 1


I'm going to assume the extra cable, black and white, goes to a switch. If you're sure the white wire that you just put the black tape on is in the same cable as the always hot black wire, then that white wire is your neutral and will hook to the white wire of you fan. Remove the black tape from that wire right now and wrap it on the other white wire that goes to the switch. Connect the white wire that you just put the tape on to the always hot black wire. Now take the remaining black wire from the switch and hook it to the black wire from the ceiling fan. Connect the ground wire from the fan to the bare copper wire from the cables.

  • If the white goes to the switch tape on it would be correct not black on the neutral of the feeder.+
    – Ed Beal
    Feb 24, 2020 at 16:47

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