How to Add an Outlet to a Light Switch
How to Use Switch Wiring for Receptacle Outlets, Light Switch Wiring and Outlet Wiring.
Light Switch Wiring and Outlet Wiring
Electrical Question: I have a single pole switch that controls a light.
I opened it up and there is a white and black wire connected to the switch and no ground wire. I need to install a receptacle below it that will always be hot and will be fed through the switch.
This electrical wiring question came from: Andrey in Massachusetts.
So far it really helps! Thanks!
Related Question: I am installing new single light switch with guide light above it.
- The power comes into the light fixture box. I have 14/3 wire running to the switch box from the light. The switch is a Leviton single pole Model # 06526-722. I keep tripping the breaker. I’m doing something wrong! Please help me!
This electrical wiring question came from Brent in Canada.
- I have power coming into a light and then from the light to a switch. The switch is at the end of the wiring. I want to convert the switch into a switch and receptacle combo so the switch still controls the light and the receptacle has continuous power to it. All the wiring diagrams I have seen show the power going straight to the switch receptacle combo and then the black white going from the switch to the light. Any help would be appreciated. Even if I call our electrician to do the job I would like to know how they did it. This electrical wiring question came in California.
Thank you for your electrical questions.
Can Switch Wiring be used for Receptacle Outlets
How Switch Wiring Can Be Used for Receptacle Outlets
- Adding an grounded outlet will require a neutral wire, a hot wire, and a ground wire.
- The switch box wiring that you have described has a hot wire leading to the switch and the switched wire for the power that returns back to the light fixture, so the wiring at the light switch cannot be used for an outlet.
- Another power source will need to be located, possibly from the opposite side of the wall depending on the wall location in the home.
- If a power source is located that does not have a ground wire then a 2-wire outlet that does not have a ground prong will need to be installed.
More about Wiring Receptacle Outlets
Electrical Wire for the Home
- Complete listing of electrical wire types and parts used for home projects with electrical code information serves as selection guidelines.
- For more information about Light Switch Wiring
- How to Wire a Light Switch
- Wiring a Light Switch – Diagram 1
- Fully explained pictures and wiring diagrams about wiring light switches describing the most common switches starting with photo diagram 1.
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Consult your Local Building Department about Permits and Inspections for all Electric Wiring Projects.
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This is a testing tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and is the first test tool I grab to help identify electrical wiring. It is a Non-contact tester that I use to easily Detect Voltage in Cables, Cords, Circuit Breakers, Lighting Fixtures, Switches, Outlets and Wires. Simply insert the end of the tester into an outlet, lamp socket, or hold the end of the tester against the wire you wish to test. Very handy and easy to use.
The Quickest Way to Check for Faulty Electrical Wiring!The Plug-In Outlet Tester
This is the first tool I grab to troubleshoot a problem with outlet circuit wiring. This popular tester is also used by most inspectors to test for power and check the polarity of circuit wiring.
It detects probable improper wiring conditions in standard 110-125 VAC outlets Provides 6 probable wiring conditions that are quick and easy to read for ultimate efficiency Lights indicate if wiring is correct and indicator light chart is included Tests standard 3-wire outlets UL Listed Light indicates if wiring is incorrect Very handy and easy to use.
Strip Off Wire Insulation without Nicking and Damaging the Electric Wire!The Wire Stripper and Wire Cutter
My absolute favorite wire stripping tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and this is the tool I use to safely strip electrical wires.
This handy tool has multiple uses:
The wire gauges are shown on the side of the tool so you know which slot to use for stripping insulation.
The end of the tool can be used to grip and bend wire which is handy for attaching wire onto the screw terminals of switches and outlets..
The wire stripper will work on both solid and stranded wire. This tool is Very Handy and Easy to Use.
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I want to put a combo switch/outlet (Leviton 5627) in place of a single pole light switch. Everything I read says a neutral 3rd wire is required but I just have a black and a white in the box. I can get either the switch or the light to work but not both. It’s ok if the outlet is only hot when the lights are on. It seems like it should be doable but I’m straining my brain trying to figure it out.
same topic as: Adding an Outlet to a Light Switch
From what you have described the white wire in the switch box is being used for switching the power wire of the light circuit. Therefore it is not a neutral wire and it cannot be used as such. Please refer to the wiring diagrams as provided in this main article.
I hope this helps,