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Old 10-14-2017, 10:52 AM   #1
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light switch wiring (doesn't look normal)


hi, new to the forum, was looking for some insights. i'm replacing a dimmer switch with a regular switch, and looking at how it was originally wired, its not exactly normal. It's not a 3way switch, the dimmer just controls the ceiling light in the room, but there are 3 sets of wires behind the dimmer.
-the 3 whites are all wound together,
-1 black wire from the dimmer is connected to 2 black wires,
-the 2nd black wire in the dimmer connects with the other black wire.
i've added a schematic...all i want to do is put in a regular switch.
would it be safe to assume wires 1 and 2 are middle of line and then 3 is the wiring to the light (an end of line).

would you pigtail 1 &2 and have that go to 1 terminal, and then the black3 would go to the other terminal?

my house was built back in the 80s and it looks like the original build wasnt exactly normal. it's all safe, but just weird. any comments would help.
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Old 10-14-2017, 11:18 AM   #2
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Re: light switch wiring (doesn't look normal)


That's normal. 1 & 2 are power in and power out. Doesn't matter
which one is which. 3 goes to the light.
Power is tapped off by the tail to power the light via the switch.
Add your new switch to the same wires and it'll work fine.
The wire nut on blk 3 isn't necessary and I'd eliminate it if the
wire is long enough.

edit: I now see the wires off the switch aren't tails, they're the
wires from the back of the dimmer.

Last edited by CodeMatters; 10-14-2017 at 11:31 AM.
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Old 10-14-2017, 11:19 AM   #3
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Re: light switch wiring (doesn't look normal)


Run a pigtail from the two black wires that are connected together to one screw of the new switch (that is your incoming hot wire), and run the other black wire to the other screw on the new switch (that is your switch leg)

A pigtail is a 6 inch length of wire.

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