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How to install a dimmer switch

1 hour | Easy | 22 STEPS

Install a dimmer switch to adjust the mood of any room in your home. Add a dimmer to your bathroom for a spa-like ambience, or your dining room for an elegant mood – easily switch back to bright lighting when needed. Change the look and feel of your home with this easy dimmer install.

WHAT YOU'LL NEED

Step

Disclaimer: This HOW-TO is for informational purposes only, and not intended to be advice.

Some provinces may require a licensed professional to perform such work. Check your local laws.

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Turn the power off to the switch you’re going to replace.

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Use the electrical tester to confirm that the power is actually off.

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Remove the faceplate first.

You may need the slot screw bit on the multi-bit screwdriver.

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Using the appropriate screwdriver bit, remove the old switch by unscrewing it from the electrical box.

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Pull it away from the electrical box and disconnect the wires.

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It's important to connect the wires correctly to the new dimmer.

Cover the ends of the wires with wire nuts, twisting the cap clockwise.

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Turn on the power.

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Hold the tester to the wires.

Mark the “Hot” wire with a piece of electrical tape.

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If there are white wires at the back of the electrical box, they won't be needed for this installation.

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Go back to the electrical panel and shut the power off.

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Re-check that the power is off with the electrical tester.

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The new dimmer switch has 3 wires.

One wire is for the “Hot” wire, the other wire is for the “Load” and the green wire is for the bare copper ground wire.

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For this dimmer, twist the bare copper wire together with the green wire.

And secure with a wire nut.

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Twist the “Load” wires together and connect them with a wire nut.

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Twist the “Hot” wires together and connect them with a wire nut.

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After mounting the dimmer, wrap electrical tape around the wire connectors for extra security.

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Place the wires back in the electrical box

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Tighten the screws attached to the dimmer switch.

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Attach the face plate with the screws removed earlier.

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Finally, turn on the circuit breaker.

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Check the function of the dimmer and you're done!