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Thread: Replace paddle with on off switch

  1. #1
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    Replace paddle with on off switch

    I have replaced several paddles in my new home with dimmer switches (PD-6WCL-WH). These have two solid black wires coming out of the back. Here's how all my switches look. For the dimmer switches I...
    • Capped off the ground wire since I don't have ground wires in these boxes
    • Connected one black solid wire on the switch to the blue wire from the wall
    • Connected the other black solid wire on the switch to the two red wires from the wall (this is one wire looped around the terminal and back out... I snipped this to create two separate wires and connected both to one black wire on the switch)

    Now I have a few basic switches I'd like to switch to CAS but don't need dimming. I bought a few on/off CAS switches (PD-6ANS-WH) and I'm seeing that the wires on the switch are different. Does this sound correct in terms of steps to connect this?
    • Cap off the ground from the switch
    • Cap off the blue from the switch (not a 3 way config)
    • Connect black on switch to blue in wall
    • Connect red on switch to reds in wall (again take the looped wire, snip in the center, connect all 3 wires)
    • Connect white on switch to the existing whites capped off in the wall

    Does that sound right? I was thrown off by the fact that two of the switch wires are stranded rather than solid and wasn't sure how to handle the neutral wire - do I connect the switch to all of the existing neutrals in the box?

  2. #2
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    Disclaimer: I am not an electrician, licensed or otherwise. Use the following information at your own risk.

    I don't know what you mean by "cap off." You appear to be using the term two different ways.

    For the switches/dimmers that require a neutral connection:

    All grounds should be tied together. As per U.S. NEC: Metal junction boxes must also be grounded.

    All neutrals are tied together.

    For the switch in question:

    Black is tied to the "hot" supply side (usually black)

    Red is tied to the load's "hot" connection (usually black)

    Blue is unused, so should be capped-off or the bare part snipped-off and the end taped.

    There are diagrams included with the dimmers/switches.

    You're mentioning some odd wire colors. Are you not in the U.S.?

    You claim you have no grounds in the boxes. Seems odd. Ground wires became standard in the U.S. in the 1960's.

  3. #3
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    If your device has 2 black leads it doesn't matter which way you connect them. If you have a black and red lead the black (on the switch) is power in and red is out to the load. If your device has a neutral connection, you must use it. You will need to dig the white wire out of the back of the box.
    Convergence Technologies Raleigh, North Carolina
    www.convergenceusa.com

  4. #4
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    I supplied a photo of what's in my box. Here it is again: https://i.postimg.cc/T2nNzdNn/existing-Switch-Copy.jpg I realize these are non-standard colors, that's why I'm here trying to confirm. My situation does not match what is in the included manual/instructions. As you can see, no green or copper wires. No grounds. Hasn't been a single ground connected to any of the 5 switches I've put dimmers on at this point. I've seen others in Chicago mention this online; doesn't seem that odd. There are two hot wires, I believe, which is also nonstandard. Sounds like I should move forward with attaching both of the red wires I have to the black wire on the switch.

  5. #5
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    If I were you I'd head over to the electrical forum at DIY Chatroom and ask there. I have no idea what's going on in that box. Doesn't look like NEC-compliant wiring to me.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by barbles View Post
    I supplied a photo of what's in my box. Here it is again: https://i.postimg.cc/T2nNzdNn/existing-Switch-Copy.jpg I realize these are non-standard colors, that's why I'm here trying to confirm. My situation does not match what is in the included manual/instructions. As you can see, no green or copper wires. No grounds. Hasn't been a single ground connected to any of the 5 switches I've put dimmers on at this point. I've seen others in Chicago mention this online; doesn't seem that odd. There are two hot wires, I believe, which is also nonstandard. Sounds like I should move forward with attaching both of the red wires I have to the black wire on the switch.
    You need to determine which is the power-in and connect it to the black on your switch. The wire going up to the light connects to the red/brass wire/terminal.

    If your box is has metal conduit connecting it to the electrical panel (in Chicago it probably does) the box/conduit is the ground. The mounting strap of the device touching the box constitutes the ground.

    Sometimes there is a ground wire connected to a screw in the box. If not you can add one. Otherwise just cap off the ground wire on the switch.
    Convergence Technologies Raleigh, North Carolina
    www.convergenceusa.com

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