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Leviton 5601 (preferred) vs. 5691 (professional) grade switches

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Hi all,
So I want to replace my toggle switches in my home with new rocker switches. I have above average DIY skills so am up to the challenge and have done several in the past. I'm trying to decide between the Leviton 5601 (preferred) vs. 5691 (professional) grade switches at Home Depot. I believe these are not just manufactured for Home Depot as I have located the specs etc. on the Leviton site. The 5601 is about $2.50 each, made in USA, has cheaper back stab feature, and has distinct "click" action to the rocker and 2 year warranty. The 5691 is $6.50 each, made in Mexico (don't know how to feel about that), has real screw back wire feature (although doesn't matter for me as I will side wire), and has a mushier and quieter action to the rocker, and 10 year warranty. It is also fully "enclosed" and appears to be bullt like a tank! I like the made in USA feature of the cheaper 5601 but can't stop feeling that the 5691 is a much better switch. But does it matter? I always like to buy the best I can afford but is the extra expenditure worth it in this case especially when I think I sort of prefer a more positive, click action feature of the cheaper switch??
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As far as single pole switches go, anything will work. I know I still have a few 50+ year old switches working well around my house. Probably retailed for 19 cents each.

I don’t remember replacing one for failure. Most were replaced for looks, or because we wanted a dimmer, etc.

So buy what you like and don’t worry about it. The extra expenditure is not worth it unless you like it’s look or features better.
 

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Their failure rate is directly tied to their use. In high use locations avoid the bottom grade, go as high as you can afford. When you get to switches that are rarely used you can go lower, but I still avoid the bottom grade products. I also like the positive click you mentioned and if made in America that's a plus.

I used to work where we had to specify products and mechanical devices to meet longevity requirements and even a middle grade is probably tested at a million cycles.

Bud
 

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Residential Grade vs Commercial Specification Grade (Spec Grade)
* Same voltage & amperage rating.
* Spec Grade will withstand voltage and amperage surges better than Residential
* Spec grade is rated at a higher endurance of On/Off cycles
* Spec Grade will withstand a higher ambient temperature increase.

In homes, I always install the Residential grade and never have a problem.
On Commercial jobs, I always install Spec Grade.
 

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Residential Grade vs Commercial Specification Grade (Spec Grade)
* Same voltage & amperage rating.
* Spec Grade will withstand voltage and amperage surges better than Residential
* Spec grade is rated at a higher endurance of On/Off cycles
* Spec Grade will withstand a higher ambient temperature increase.

In homes, I always install the Residential grade and never have a problem.
On Commercial jobs, I always install Spec Grade.

I would not assume Leviton "professional grade" devices sold at a home improvement store as equal to actual "specification grade" products.
 

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For light switches, buy what you like. I have used the 10 ct box of most of the major manufacturers and have had no problem. The main thing with any outlet (switch, duplex, etc.) do NOT backstab. That is the easiest way to cause problems.

The better quality ones will have what looks like backstab but actually require you to tighten the screw to hold the wire tight. Otherwise, make a loop and tighten the side screw.

Where I do like to spend extra is on the duplex outlets. The better the quality, the better the plug stays in.

The cheap Leviton basic residential plug is $0.68 at THD, the Tamper resistant plug, which is not required is $1.19 each and the commercial grade is $1.99.

For heavy use applications, like kitchen counter outlets or bathroom outlets, I would use the commercial grade plugs as this is where most things get plugged and unplugged. For most every where else, I would use the tamper resistant plug.

Personally, I use the commercial grade most places as I like to replace duplex outlets only once.
 

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the Tamper resistant plug, which is not required is $1.19 each
Unless you have a local amendment saying otherwise, the tamper resistant receptacle is required. Been that way since NEC 2008.

The major exceptions are
Receptacles located more than 5½ ft above the floor.
Receptacles that are part of a luminaire or appliance.
A receptacle located within dedicated space for an appliance that in normal use isn’t easily moved from one place to another.
Nongrounding receptacles used for replacements as permitted in 406.4(D)(2)(a).
 

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I meant to say that it IS required. Damn autocorrect!!
Thanks for the additional info on when it is not required .
 
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Hi all,
So I want to replace my toggle switches in my home with new rocker switches. I have above average DIY skills so am up to the challenge and have done several in the past. I'm trying to decide between the Leviton 5601 (preferred) vs. 5691 (professional) grade switches at Home Depot. I believe these are not just manufactured for Home Depot as I have located the specs etc. on the Leviton site. The 5601 is about $2.50 each, made in USA, has cheaper back stab feature, and has distinct "click" action to the rocker and 2 year warranty. The 5691 is $6.50 each, made in Mexico (don't know how to feel about that), has real screw back wire feature (although doesn't matter for me as I will side wire), and has a mushier and quieter action to the rocker, and 10 year warranty. It is also fully "enclosed" and appears to be bullt like a tank! I like the made in USA feature of the cheaper 5601 but can't stop feeling that the 5691 is a much better switch. But does it matter? I always like to buy the best I can afford but is the extra expenditure worth it in this case especially when I think I sort of prefer a more positive, click action feature of the cheaper switch??
I have had mechanical failures in both rocker and residential quality toggle switches. I've never had a failure in a commercial grade switch. I'm not an electrician so I have seen an admittedly small sample of switches but that should even more strongly prove you should stay away from residential grade switches.

One other thing about the rocker switches. When they have been installed for a few years the people in the house get used to slapping the switch on the wall to turn it off and on. That causes more dirt to be transferred from the hands to the wall and the wall will get dirty around the switch a lot faster than toggle switches.
 

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Actually there are 3 basic grades at my hardware stores, the bottom one being the cheapest at .69 or something like that. These are not very expensive gadgets as building materials go (any of the three). However I've seen many of the cheap switches and outlets fail in the houses I've been in. Sometimes they technically are working after a number of years, but as soon as they are touched for doing some other work, they just break. They have formed cracks in the plastic which just break off if you try to adjust them, or the wire connections fail. They're simply cheaply made. The mid grade (preferred) however are more sturdily made. The top commercial grade are simply overkill IMO. The main difference is usage cycles, and in a home it's practically impossible to overuse a switch to the point where you'd need a commercial switch IMO. So for me the mid grade "preferred" is the way to go.
 
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