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How to install a dimmer switch

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.

Install a Dimmer Switch Install a Dimmer Switch

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.

STEP 1

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

2015 Install a dimmer turn off 2015 Install a dimmer turn off

STEP 2

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

2015 Install a dimmer electric tester 2015 Install a dimmer electric tester

STEP 3

Remove the faceplate first.

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

2015 Install a dimmer electric remove faceplate 2015 Install a dimmer electric remove faceplate

STEP 4

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

2015 Install a dimmer electric remove old switch 2015 Install a dimmer electric remove old switch

STEP 5

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

2015 Install a dimmer electric pull from electric box 2015 Install a dimmer electric pull from electric box

STEP 6

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.

2015 Install a dimmer electric connect electric box 2015 Install a dimmer electric connect electric box

STEP 7

Turn on the power.

2015 Install a dimmer electric turn on the power 2015 Install a dimmer electric turn on the power

STEP 8

Hold the tester to the wires.

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

2015 Install a dimmer electric hold the tester 2015 Install a dimmer electric hold the tester

STEP 9

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

STEP 10

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

2015 Install a dimmer turn power off 2015 Install a dimmer turn power off

STEP 11

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

2015 Install a dimmer recheck 2015 Install a dimmer recheck

STEP 12

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.

2015 Install a dimmer 3 wires 2015 Install a dimmer 3 wires

STEP 13

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

And secure with a wire nut.

2015 Install a dimmer twist with green wire 2015 Install a dimmer twist with green wire

STEP 14

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

2015 Install a dimmer twist with green wire twist load wire 2015 Install a dimmer twist with green wire twist load wire

STEP 15

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

2015 Install a dimmer twist with green wire twist and nut 2015 Install a dimmer twist with green wire twist and nut

STEP 16

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

2015 Install a dimmer twist with green wire twist and tape 2015 Install a dimmer twist with green wire twist and tape

STEP 17

Place the wires back in the electrical box.

2015 Install a dimmer place back 2015 Install a dimmer place back

STEP 18

Tighten the screws attached to the dimmer switch.

2015 Install a dimmer tighten screw 2015 Install a dimmer tighten screw

STEP 19

Attach the face plate with the screws removed earlier.

2015 Install a dimmer attach face plate 2015 Install a dimmer attach face plate

STEP 20

Finally, turn on the circuit breaker.

2015 Install a dimmer turn on circuit break 2015 Install a dimmer turn on circuit break

STEP 21

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