ask the electrician
Electrician Training Electrical Certification wiring recessed light fixtures Electrical Wiring Electrical Troubleshooting and Electrical Repairs wire outdoor light fixture Home Electrical Wiring Diagrams
wiring home generator and transfer switch wiring a 220 volt range cord outlet Wiring for GFCI Outlets Wiring Outlets and a Switched Outlet Wiring and Installing Ceiling Fans and Remote Controls wire dimmer switch wiring diagrams for switches wiring a dryer cord and 220 outlet circuit breaker panel
Electrical Wire and Cable

How to Extend Electrical Wiring for a Light Switch

Wiring a Light Switch – How to Add Electrical Wiring for a Outlet and a Light Switch and Extending the Electrical Circuit Wiring for an Outlet and Light Switch.

Home Electrical Wiring Video

How to Wire a GFCI Outlet
without a Ground Wire

Check out my YouTube Channel and Subscribe to my Videos
» AskTheElectrician «

NOTE: A List of All my Helpful Videos
Will Display at the End of This Video
So Keep Watching So I Can Help You Wire it Right!

How to Add Electrical Wiring for a Outlet and Light Switch
Electrical Question: How can I put a junction box into the circuit wiring before a light fixture so I can add an outlet light and switch.


This electrical question came from: Jake, a Handyman from New York, NY.

Electrical Answer:
Dave’s Reply:
Thanks for your electrical wiring question Jake.

How to Add Electrical Wiring for a Outlet and Light Switch

Application: Adding Electrical Circuit Wiring.
Skill Level: Intermediate to Advanced – Best installed by a Licensed Electrical Contractor.
Tools Required: Basic Electricians Pouch Hand Tools, electric drill, auger bits and extension cord.
Estimated Time: Depends on personal level experience, ability to work with tools and install electrical circuit wiring.
Notice: Installing additional electrical circuit wiring should be done according to local and national electrical codes with a permit and be inspected.

Extending Electrical Circuit Wiring for an Outlet and Light Switch

Common Problem when Installing Circuit Wiring from a Light Switch

More about Electrical Circuit Wiring and Wiring Diagrams

The following may also be helpful for you:

Dave's Guide to Home Electrical Wiring:

» You Can Avoid Costly Mistakes! «

Here's How to Do It:
Wire It Right with the help of my Illustrated Wiring Book

Great for any Home Wiring Project.
  electrical wiring  

Complete Guide to Home Electrical Wiring

Perfect for Homeowners, Students,
Handyman, Handy Women, and Electricians
Wiring GFCI Outlets
Wiring Home Electric Circuits
120 Volt and 240 Volt Outlet Circuits
Wiring Light Switches
Wiring 3-Wire and 4-Wire Electric Range
Wiring 3-Wire and 4-Wire Dryer Cord and Dryer Outlet
How to Troubleshoot and Repair Electrical Wiring
Wiring Methods for Upgrading Electrical Wiring
NEC Codes for Home Electrical Wiring
....and much more.

Learn more about Home Electrical Wiring
with my Online Video Course:
Basic Home Electrical Wiring by Example

Be Careful and Be Safe - Never Work on Energized Circuits!
Consult your Local Building Department about Permits and Inspections for all Electric Wiring Projects.

Electrical Tips to Help You Wire it Right

The Safest Way to Test Electrical Devices and Identify Electric Wires!

The Non-Contact Electrical Tester
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.

More articles about Electrical Wiring, Extending a Circuit and Home Electrical Wiring:
« Previous Next »
How to Wire a Ceiling Fan in an Older Home Don’t Make This Mistake When Upgrading an Electrical Panel

FAQs Frequently Asked Questions and Comments

4 Responses to “How to Extend Electrical Wiring for a Light Switch”
  1. Albert Maruggi says:

    This is crazy I have two circuits coming into a 1 gang shallow outlet box, circuit #6 is on the top outlet. This is in the middle of a run as it goes to a junction box then another outlet. The hot wire from main panel, then the hot from the junction box share same pole. White to junction box on opposite of that pole.
    The bottom outlet has hot from main panel from circuit 8 and white from panel for circuit 8 plus a ground. It looks like then that this is a shared neutral.
    My question is how do I tap into this outlet for hard wire under cabinet lighting. It’s the most convenient source to get to. The next closest power source is the main room light which is on a 3 way switch. I am completely stumped.

  2. Dave Rongey says:

    Hi Albert,
    What you have described is known as a Multi-Wire Circuit, which is where two circuits from different phases or buss share the same neutral. You can tap into one of these circuits as long as the circuit has the available amperage and the neutral remains under the amperage rating of the circuit wiring conductor.
    Keep in mind that the circuit breakers that provide the power for these two circuits, circuits #6 and #8 should have a tie bar across the two breaker handles. The reason is because both of these circuit must be OFF before working on the circuit wiring to eliminate any voltage potential on the neutral wire.
    I hope this helps you,

  3. Jerry Brown says:

    I am replacing a bathroom exhaust fan located in the ceiling. The existing electrical wire will not reach the new exhaust fan. Can I extend the wire by installing a junction box which will end up behind the ceiling dry wall?

  4. Dave Rongey says:

    Hi Jerry,
    I understand your wiring problem and this may help you: If the added junction box will be accessible from the attic space then this method is allowed. However, if the junction box will be inaccessible then it is not allowed.

    How to Make the Wire Longer
    You may want to see if you can reconfigure the path of the cable by removing the cable staples, which may allow you to get a little more length from the wire so it reaches the new exhaust fan. Make sure the cable is well protected, and then secure the cable in place.
    Enjoy your new exhaust fan,