has been miswired for years. For starters, neither device had the grounding wires attached. I want to put things the way they should be.
I always wanted to replace the receptacle (see below), but the switch recently died
in a little wisp of smoke.
I've already replaced the switch; the only problem there was that I couldn't find one with the screws on the left, so I had to tape over them (good practice to guard against shorts, especially in a metal box).
The receptacle has a broken "lip" on top, meaning 3-prong cords don't stay in place, and the lower receptacle has always been strange in what it would power and when (e.g. trouble light worked fine, vacuum no). Now that I look at it it's almost as if it is supposed to be controlled by the same switch as the ceiling light. I don't remember that being the case and it seems wrong. I can reconnect and try this out if there's a question.
Here's how it looked as I opened it up
. The outlet is in series and so I expect one lead coming in and another going out, but there are actually two wires connected to each screw. This other view
shows the other side of the outlet and here is more of the wiring itself
(If necessary I could sketch an actual wiring diagram.)
Ideally I could connect everything exactly the way it was, but I have low confidence that it's the way it should
be. The new outlet doesn't give me enough room for all these wires, so should I use pigtails to make the connections? Do the wire colors seem to make sense? Do I need to test the wires for correct hot and neutral? It looks to me like going up into the conduit we have a white and black on the right, and a white, red, and red (?!) on the left. (To me, a three-way switch needs white, black and red, but this isn't three way!) The right conduit is the ceiling light, the middle conduit is the garage door opener, and the romex goes to an outdoor outlet.
Obviously basic electrical safety being practiced here -- breaker off, testing for liveness, etc. I've replaced switches and outlets before but never had to really rewire one. I have a multi-function tester but I'm not sure how to apply it in this case.
Maybe I really need a pro to sort this out?