Bathroom fan with light with only 14/2 wiring

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ekrig

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Hello everybody,

I've been renovating one of our bathrooms and recently found a Broan bathroom fan with light at Costco than seemed a great improvement to the current (very) noisy one. For context the new fan is intended to have at least 3 conductors (14/3) wiring, with one of them controlling the fan and the other the light. When the fan is left on, it uses the humidity sensor, and cycling it off-then-on activates the timer.

My problem is that the current fan was installed using only 14/2 wiring. I've tried pulling that from the attic immediately above, and pull 14/3 wiring to replace it, but it is not moving. I suspect that it may be help by staples inside the wall. So unless I break the wall at the way to the ceiling, which I really don't want to do, I'm stuck with the 14/2 wiring. So the question is either any of you has any idea of how I might control the two from just those two.

So far, here are the options I've come up with:
1. Connect the fan and forget about the light
2. Use a ceiling fan remote. This works, but ideally I would prefer something that uses the slot available at the box.

Any other thoughts?
 

Snoonyb

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Yep, those are the options.
Were it I, I would use the remote and mount the controller at the entry door, you can also remove the existing switch, install a blank cover and mount the remote controller, on top of the blank cover.
 

Eddie_T

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Can you fish a 14/3 into the box? If so push the 14/2 out or snip it off so it's not in the way.
 

ekrig

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Were it I, I would use the remote and mount the controller at the entry door, you can also remove the existing switch, install a blank cover and mount the remote controller, on top of the blank cover.
Thank you. The second way you suggest was what I considered. Lets say that I go with this option. Those remotes are designed to work with fans and lights with multiple intensity levels, whereas a bathroom fan is an on/off kind of thing; wouldn't that cause problems? Or, are you aware of a remote that only has the on/off option? Cause I haven't found one yet.
 

ekrig

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Can you fish a 14/3 into the box? If so push the 14/2 out or snip it off so it's not in the way.
I don't think that I can. The cables go through a small hole in a (hard to reach) 2x4 in the attic and the box in the bathroom seems original, meaning that I would have to break the wall to fish anything into it. If there is some trick that I'm aware of, please let me know.
 

kok328

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Can you fish a 14/3 into the box? If so push the 14/2 out or snip it off so it's not in the way.
How would you secure the wires to the studs (per code) inside the wall after fishing it up to the attic (or feeding it down through the attic)?
 

Eddie_T

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How would you secure the wires to the studs (per code) inside the wall after fishing it up to the attic (or feeding it down through the attic)?
People often just pull wires into cavities to add receptacles when using old work (retrofit) boxes. No inspection is required.

Not being there I can only offer suggestions but usually where there's a will there's a way. One way might be to carefully remove the old box (w/o harming the wall) so the opening would be available. You might not need fish tape if you can get the wire down the wall cavity from the attic.
 
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Snoonyb

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Or drill another hole.
I've used a sawmill, with some success in cutting the nails holding boxes to studs. The curb of the. metal cutting blades seem to not make the wall damage an issue.

Spell-check is adding "m", between words;), this AM.

Re, the remote. there are those that are volume programable, so that touch is on/off.
 

BuzzLOL

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Another option is adding a pull chain/cord switch to the fixture. Since it's a bathroom, use a nonconductor cord from the short chain. Switch could control the light or the fan/timer.
 

afjes_2016

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How would you secure the wires to the studs (per code) inside the wall after fishing it up to the attic (or feeding it down through the attic)?
Securing the fished cable is not required by code in this case.
 

bud16415

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I would just wire the fan and light together and that way you know people turn on the fan. If you want to leave it on in the auto fan mode the LED lights use so little power I wouldn’t worry about it. My guess is unless you have a really humid area you will just leave the fan run a few minutes after a shower and then shut it off.
 

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