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Thread: Switched outlet

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member sixtz4me's Avatar
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    Default Switched outlet

    Hey guys, I want to switch an outlet, but want the top and bottom both to be switched. Do I just leave the bar between the screws , or is there another way? Thanks, Bill

  2. #2
    Electrical Contractor/Instructor jwelectric's Avatar
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    just leave the bar between the screws

  3. #3
    DIY Junior Member sixtz4me's Avatar
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    thanks for the reply jw.

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    DIY Member Drewski123's Avatar
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    What's the proper way to wire 2 outlets where their bottoms are switched? I have 12-2 power in to the first outlet. Here I am debating which wire to use, 12-2 or 12-3 becuase the next box is a switch. After the switch, next is the second outlet. The second outlet is the end of the circuit. Is it possible to ommit the 12-3 wire and go with 12-2 from the switch to the second outlet?
    Thanks for your help.

  5. #5
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    If you have 12/2 to the first outlet, then its "bottom outlet" is NOT switched. You only need 12/2 to the switch, but IF you want to ONLY switch the bottom half of the second outlet, you WILL need a 12/3 wire, but this is the kind of installation which is so "elementary" that if you even had to ask the question, it might NOT be a good DIY project for you.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

  6. #6
    DIY Member Drewski123's Avatar
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    hj, could you check the image and let me know if there is anything wrong with it? The plan is to have the bottom half of the two receptacales switched.

    Thank you.
    Drew
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  7. #7
    DIY Senior Member bluebinky's Avatar
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    Another thing to consider is box fill. It is based on the size and number of wires entering the box plus the volume taken by the device. Many single-gang boxes are too small to do a a switched+hot setup like this.

  8. #8
    Test, Don't Guess! cacher_chick's Avatar
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    The wiring will work.

    To add to what bluebinky said, make sure the receptacles you install are 15A if you are using 14 ga. wire. The receptacles in your picture are 20A, which would be incorrect.

  9. #9
    DIY Member Drewski123's Avatar
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    Default

    Thank you all. I forgot to mention, I could not find a better picture/diagram, so I found one with 14-2, 14-3 wiring. But in my case, I will be using 12-2 & 12-3. In terms of box fill, the first and the third box (outlet boxes) allow to have 8 conductors in each. The switch will be located in a 3 gang box with some other 2 switches (14-2 wiring) and the two other switches will be on its own supply.

  10. #10
    DIY Senior Member bluebinky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drewski123 View Post
    Thank you all. I forgot to mention, I could not find a better picture/diagram, so I found one with 14-2, 14-3 wiring. But in my case, I will be using 12-2 & 12-3. In terms of box fill, the first and the third box (outlet boxes) allow to have 8 conductors in each. The switch will be located in a 3 gang box with some other 2 switches (14-2 wiring) and the two other switches will be on its own supply.
    OK, assuming #12 with no internal clamps:
    2 - white
    2 - black
    1 - red
    1 - ground
    2 - switch
    -------------
    8 conductors X 2.25 ==> 18 cubic in box minimum

    For me, thats just too crowded -- I'd go with a 4-square box + mud ring (not that I'd be able to make a living the way I do things...).

    Also, make sure you do not tie the neutrals from both circuits together...
    Last edited by bluebinky; 03-22-2013 at 11:43 AM.

  11. #11
    DIY Member Drewski123's Avatar
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    Thanks Bluebinky. The two single gang boxes that I am using are 20 cubic, so slightly more than going with 18 cubic boxes. I may go with a 4-square box + mud ring for at least the first box. In terms of the neutrals, do you mean not to tie the neutrals from the two outlets in the 3 gang box (center box) with the other two switches that will be running on a different circuit? If that's what you are saying, my ansear is, the neutrals will not be tied together.
    Thanks.

  12. #12
    DIY Senior Member bluebinky's Avatar
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    Sounds like you got it. In general, different circuits should not share neutrals.

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