Wiring A Single Pole Switch With A Pilot Light - Electrical - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum

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Old 10-31-2009, 01:49 PM   #1
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Wiring a single pole switch with a pilot light

Hello, This is rather simple but I need to figure out this kind of wiring because
it still does not work. The cooper switch with a pilot light, I bought, has on one
side two black terminals, and on the other side three terminal, one black ,
one silver, and one green for ground. If you log to COOPER it will show you a
picture. WHY the silver terminal? Switches do not have a place for a neutral
connection. So, WHY the silver terminal? If you have only one black wire
coming from the box, WHY have two black terminals at the switch?
In plain English, Could you please show me how to wire a switch with pilot light?
I have been searching for E-HOW and other home improvements places, but
I could not find any instructions. Thanks
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Old 10-31-2009, 01:56 PM   #2
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I will half answer your question and see if you can figure out the rest, not to be a ahole but to help you learn.

You are correct a switch does not require a neutral, it interupts the hot and your light goes on and off.

When you hook up a light or plug you always have two wire, a hot and neutral.

Thats all I am giveing you, see if you can answer the rest of your question. If you can't don't be afraid to ask.
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Old 10-31-2009, 02:18 PM   #3
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I will keep it very simple how many conductors { wires } you have in the switch box ?

If only two conductor then you have switch loop but three conductors it kinda iffy some case you will have three way switchloop.

And the numbers of cables as well.

But if you have power source at the switch then it will be very easy to use the neon light { that switch you have the neon light will come on when you turn the switch on }

Let us know then we will go from there.

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Old 10-31-2009, 03:00 PM   #4
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Your problem is you are comparing a single pole switch (one device) with a switch/pilot light combination unit (2 devices).

The screw terminals are provided to allow both devices to operate independently.

The switch portion has 2 terminals. The pilot light requires a hot and a neutral (2 terminals) to operate. The ground screw provides required grounding connection for both. Total = 5 terminals.

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Old 10-31-2009, 03:09 PM   #5
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The pilot light requires a neutral. The switch does not.
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Old 10-31-2009, 06:03 PM   #6
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The switch has separate terminals so you can choose to wire it as:
1. Pilot light on when switch is on.
Connect black terminal of light to wire going to load served by switch. Connect silver terminal to neutral.
2. Pilot light on when switch is off (night light).
Connect black terminal of switch to one switch terminal. Connect silver terminal to other switch terminal.
3. Pilot light on all the time.
Connect black terminal of light to hot feed. Connect silver terminal to neutral.

For #1 and #3 you need a neutral coming into the switch box. Do not use the ground as a neutral. Use extra short lengths of wire (pigtails) and wire nuts as needed so no more than one wire end is held down by any one screw.
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Last edited by AllanJ; 10-31-2009 at 06:07 PM.
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