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Replacing a Faulty Dimmer Switch


By Dave Rongey - Summary:

I’m having a problem with a light switch, which is a dimmer, the switch has stopped working, and now neither plug in the outlet works either…

Dimmer Switch Diagnosis and Replacement

Question: I’m having a problem with a light switch, which is a dimmer. It’s also connected to an outlet in the room. The switch has stopped working, and now neither plug in the outlet works either. Previously, one was controlled by the switch, but both were not. Any idea if this could be an easy problem to fix (new light switch? new outlet?) or if this is definitely a job for an electrician?

Slightly more info: I’m told the light flickered a few minutes before it went out. And yes, I have turned breaker on/off. There are also two other light switches in the group, but both of those work, so I’m guessing they’re wired independently.

Thanks for any help/suggestions

This electrical question came from: Mark, a Homeowner from Columbia, Maryland.
See more about Home Wiring for Maryland

Dave’s Reply:
Thanks for your electrical question Mark.

Replacing Dimmer Switches

Mark, from what you have describer the dimmer switch may need to be replaced. There are a few tests that a qualified electrician can perform to positively isolate the problem and make the necessary repairs. The replacement dimmer switch will need to be sized according to the lighting loads that it will be controlling. If the dimmer switch is controlling a wall outlet, then only dimmer compatible lighting fixtures should be plugged into the outlet.

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