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zenox 07-26-2012 04:49 PM

Replacing a Dimmer switch with a standard switch
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I'm in the progress of installing a ceiling fan in my master bedroom. One of the first steps is to replace the existing dimmer switch with a standard switch. After turning off the power, I opened the existing socket and found the following: (also attached).

The switch on the left has three wires to it. Black, White and Red. This switch controls two top wall sockets.

The switch (dimmer) on the right controls the ceiling light and only has two black wires (no ground).

So i'm not positive how I should hook the replacement switch up. My understanding is that I should hook one black wire to the right and one black wire to the left side. That way the switch breaks and connects the circuit. Is that correct? Do I need to do anything for the ground?


McSteve 07-26-2012 05:07 PM

Disconnect the two black wires from the dimmer, connect each one to one of the screws on the new switch, doesn't matter which one goes where. Leave all the other wires alone.

Your grounds in that box are kinda screwed up, too short to pigtail together, so I would just connect a short piece of bare copper wire from the new switch's ground screw to ground screw screwed into the metal box.

zenox 07-26-2012 05:12 PM

Thanks! So I should put the copper wire from the new switches ground to the same screw that there is currently a copper wire going to in the background?

McSteve 07-26-2012 05:36 PM

It looks like you've got 3 or 4 ground screws in the back of the box there, and only two of them have wires on them. Put the new ground wire on an unused screw. Ideally you'd have all the ground wires wirenutted together with a pigtail to the box and to each device, but the ground wires are cut too short. That box looks... Canadian? Are you in Canada? I think Canada does things slightly differently with regards to grounding, so maybe someone else can chime in and tell us what's normal up there.

zenox 07-26-2012 08:58 PM

Perfect, I'll put the new ground to the unused screw. And yes, I am in Canada. Love how you could tell that just from a picture of the box! :)

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