My husband and I purchased a mobile home to fix up. The plugs, switches, and light fixtures were all missing. We have replaced all the plugs. We only have power to half of the house, assuming it's because we have some missing switches and light fixtures. Placement of each seem very obvious and hooking switches and plugs we've done before, but the light fixture wires are confusing us... Mainly because the previous owners twisted some of the white and black wires together and I've never heard of this bring correct in any instance. I wish I could attach a picture... Any ideas?

1 Answer 1


Typically when you see white and black connected together it is for a switch loop.

Power comes into the light fixture, then another cable runs to the switch. The cable going to/from the switch will use one wire for hot, and one for switched hot. There is no neutral at the switch.

The proper thing to do is to mark the end of the white wire with black marker or electrical tape so future people (you) know what it is used for.

Without being there and knowing the quality of the work done before I cant say for sure this is the case, but its very typical.

  • I like to use Red in these cases if I really needed to wire it that way. Though I would guess that the wires that are twisted together are in the fixture side, or at the switch side feeding a second switch. The only reason I can see them being ties together (vs a switch being connected to a white and a black) is to branch the switched leg or power at the fixture to another figure.
    – scooter133
    Commented Jan 9, 2015 at 5:51

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