Just bought a new replacement ceiling fan/light for kitchen in house we just bought, which was built in 1912 and has obviously had a wiring update, but many years ago.
I switched the wall switch off and snipped the wires leading from the ceiling to the old fixture. The electrical box is brown plastic. The cable coming into the box has a white sheath and a black and a white wire, plus a bare ground, which is bent back into the box but not connected to anything -- just touching air. The black lead, assumedly the hot, is connected to two additional black wires. They are properly wire-screwed, although no electrician's tape was used.
The white lead, presumedly the common, is properly wire-screwed to a black wire. (But, again, no tape.) This black wire has a little band (label) around it which reads "0". The two black wires connected to the black lead have bands reading "2" and "3". What do these numbers mean?
I used a voltage detector and all three wires caused the detector's light to illuminate and the tone to sound. HOWEVER, However, the black wire connected to the white lead caused the voltage detector to react the strongest. The other two black wires, connected to the black lead, caused lesser reactions by the detector, one a little stronger than the other. The detector is a Sperry 50-1000 volts, $17 pen type from Ace Hardware, The black wire that is connected to the apparently common (white) lead activates the detector from 8". The other two, which come off the black lead, must be in contact with the detector to trigger it.
The new light/fan has a black, a white and a blue wire.
I've installed several ceiling fan/lights previously, but have never been faced with the slightly clouded wire-color issue, nor with the bent back but not connected ground.
Any suggestions? Thans for you help.