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Hi, I want to move a light switch that controls two lights…

Hi, I want to move...
Hi, I want to move a light switch that controls two lights in the same room, but the existing switch has only three black wires, no ground or negative wires. I'm sure this does not meet any current codes, but is it safe to splice it to a new box the way it's wired?
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Answered in 1 minute by:
6/29/2010
Mike G.
Mike G., Master Electrician
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 8,417
Experience: Proven Professional 49 years Experience
Verified
Hi, I'm Mike and I'll be glad to assist you. Is there more than one switch controlling the light?
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Customer reply replied 8 years ago
No.
Are all three wires connected to the switch?
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Customer reply replied 8 years ago
Thanks for your reply. Sorry, went to turn of the power again and double check.... I was wrong. Okay, there are three black wires connected to the switch: one from below, connected to the lower right screw of the switch, and two from above, connected to the upper two screws. There are also three white wires (two from above and one from below) all connected in 1 nut. None of them is connected to the switch. There is also a bare wire coming in from below that is grounded to the back of the box. The switch itself has two toggle switches (one for each light), arranged vertically. Does this make sense?
What you described is a switch over switch. Please note the wire attached to the black screw, that's the feed. The wiring is as it should be. You're going to move the switches. What are going to do with the old switch box? If you use it for a junction box, which is OK, you'll have to leave it and put a blank cover on it.
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Customer reply replied 8 years ago
Hi Mike, great, this is really helpful. Yes, I was planning to just put a blank cover over the existing box after I spliced the new wires. So, do I splice the black wires only and run them to the new switch? Is it okay to leave the white ones and grounding wire as they are in the old box? Many thanks. Connie
Mike
Mike, Master Electrician
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 2,743
Experience: Licensed Master Electrician - OnQ Certified Data Voice Audio Video Installer
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Hi, you can just splice the black wires if you'd like. This would be the easiest method. To do this, you'll need to run a 12/3 cable from the junction box to the new switch box. Tie the white wire from the 12/3 cable to the black wire that was connected to the black screw on the switch. Then tie the red wire from the 12/3 cable to one of the other blacks (doesn't matter which one), then tie the last two remaining wires together (both blacks). Don't forget to connect the ground (bare copper) as well, to the bare copper/grounds in the switch box. Then where your switch is installed at it's new location, connect the white wire to that black screw, and connect the black and red wires to the remaining two screws. Finally connect the ground wire to the ground screw on the switch.



Regards,

Mike


Mike
Mike, Master Electrician
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 2,743
Experience: Licensed Master Electrician - OnQ Certified Data Voice Audio Video Installer
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