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So I have 5 wires coming out of the ceiling two coming form one side three from the other there is a switch to this light which wires get put together to wire into a new fixture with white black and copper ?

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  • 2
    Yikes. The insulation on those is not merely old, it's in terrible condition with bare wire showing where it should not....
    – Ecnerwal
    May 30, 2022 at 1:17
  • I realize that however I can’t afford an electrician to help so I must do it my self and I’ve never worked on anything this old before
    – Jeannie
    May 30, 2022 at 1:22
  • 1
    why are you asking this again? ... diy.stackexchange.com/questions/250157/…
    – jsotola
    May 30, 2022 at 2:21
  • 1
    You appear to have created two accounts. You can get them merged into one account as per here: diy.stackexchange.com/help/merging-accounts
    – Ecnerwal
    May 30, 2022 at 13:07

1 Answer 1


Get a multimeter and a non contact voltage tester. Make sure they are UL or ETL listed. Any from home depot or Lowes or a regular hardware store or a name brand like Klein if you buy online.

Make sure the breaker is off.

Tape up the bare wires for safety with electrical tape.

With breaker still off check continuity of each wire against the metal box. That should find the neutral.

Then carefully separate the wires and turn the breaker on. Use the non contact tester to identify the hot. Turn the switch on and identify switched hot.

Turn the breaker off.

Open the switch box and take pictures showing all wire connections.

Upload the pictures and your findings of hot and switched hot and neutral.

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