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Old 11-24-2006, 02:47 PM   #1
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Toggle switches: With or without grounding screw?

Hello together!

I just bought toggle switches (single pole) from Leviton out of different markets. Some of them have grounding screws, others don't. But the metal where the grounding screw shall be put in is still there. I discovered in the catalogue that you can buy them with and without screw.

What is the reason for that? Is there a special law that if you have a product without grounding you do not need to ground it?


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Old 11-24-2006, 03:39 PM   #2
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You are permitted to use an ungrounded snap switch for replacements only, and only if there is no ground in the box. I think they added the snap switch bonding requirement around 1987 or so. Here's the code on the matter, if it interests you:

250.147 Bonding of General-Use Snap Switches.

Exception: Where no equipment grounding conductor exists
within the snap-switch enclosure, a snap switch without
a terminal for connecting the equipment grounding conductor
shall be permitted for replacement purposes only. A
snap switch wired under the provisions of this exception
and located within reach of earth, grade conducting floors,
or other conducting surfaces shall be provided with a faceplate
of nonconducting, noncombustible material.


Last edited by mdshunk; 11-24-2006 at 03:41 PM. Reason: type-o
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Old 11-27-2006, 02:27 PM   #3
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Thank you for the answer!

How about Decora switches, why is there no grounding necessary? Till now I haven't seen any grounded Decora residential switch, just a grounded 4-way model.
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Old 11-27-2006, 03:48 PM   #4
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Many cheeper switches are made with all plastic yokes. (that is the part that supports he entire switch body.)

Grounding plastic would be a waste of time, therefore there is no ground screw.

If the yoke is made of metal, it should be grounded.
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