Existing Circuits and Where they Go

We have been trying to figure out all of the existing circuit breakers and their function in the house. One day last winter we went through the box and labeled every dangling wire in the house with the corresponding circuit number in the box. I have since used several of those for temporary light switches and outlets. Some of the circuits connect to the back of the house and were not disconnected.

We can account for at least five live circuits in the back, the radon fan, the fire alarm, the red room, the hallway, and the back room which includes the bathroom and the crawlspace light. We don’t know what a few of the circuits control though, they are currently off and we are not missing their function. The GFCI in the bathroom does not have power and none of the circuit breakers seem to turn it on. There is an outlet in the crawlspace that does not have power and some outlets outside at the old spa heater area that must be on some circuit.

Today I worked on the double switch box in the garage. I was hoping one of the lines there controlled the front lights which would verify the connection to the patio light posts. But I could not find the feed wire in the box, while one wire in that box is unidentified, it does not power the front lights.

Wiring to the garage switch box

Wiring behind the garage switch box

This was already labeled as circuit 13 and we knew it fed the garage light switch, the second switch in the box appears not to control anything, Maybe it was used to control the hall light as you walked into the house. I have an outlet going to the router that I found out is tied to this circuit but was not on the switch, and a black jacketed 4 wire that does not seem to go anywhere that was wired into this circuit and was hot–so I disconnected it. Maybe it provided a three way switch for the outside lights? But I was not able to figure out what wire serves power to the lights. It is a mystery that may require that I climb up into the garage attic and cut through the wall that separates the attic from the house. There is a weird uninsulated space there that is a chase for wiring and the plumbing vent.

In the meantime I removed the lights including one I had just installed. I am going to convert the big garage light to a single bulb from three candelabra bulbs. I may paint it bronze to match the other lights too.

Existing garage light

Existing garage light

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