Replace a Switch with a Switch and Outlet
How to Replace a Switch with a Combo Switch and Outlet: I want to replace it with a switch and outlet combo unit, but I am unsure about the wiring.
Combo Switch Outlet and How to Wire Them
Electrical Question: I want to replace it with a switch and outlet combo unit, but I am unsure about the wiring.
- I have a light switch in my kitchen that controls a ceiling fan and its light fixture.
- Is it possible to install a switch and outlet, and how would I do it?
I thank you for your help,
This electrical question came from: Norman, a Homeowner from Miami, Florida.
Thanks for your Electrical Wiring Question Norman.
How to Replace a Switch with a Combo Switch and Outlet
Application: Wiring a Combo Switch Outlet.
Skill Level: Beginner to Intermediate – Best if wired by a Licensed Electrical Contractor.
Tools Required: Basic Electricians Pouch Hand Tools and a Voltage Tester.
Estimated Time: Depends on personal level experience, ability to work with tools and electrical wiring.
Precaution: Identify the power source at the panel, turn it OFF and Tag it with a Note before working with the wiring.
Notice: Installing additional outlet wiring should be done according to local and national electrical codes with a permit and be inspected.
Materials: Make sure to use materials of the same amperage and voltage rating as the electrical circuit.
Required Wiring to Replace a Switch with a Switch Outlet
- Replacing a light switch with a combination switch and outlet can only be possible if there is a neutral wire in the switch box.
- The neutral wire is necessary for the 120 volt outlet to work.
- In a switch box a “white wire” may not actually be a “neutral wire” especially if the white wire is connected to a switch.
- When neutral wires are found in a switch box they are spliced together and not attached to the switch.
- Verification of a neutral wire is best accomplished by using a voltage tester and understanding of how to use the tester and interpret the readings based upon the application to avoid confusion.
- Because the outlet will be in the kitchen, the outlet should be a GFCI Outlet, and there are GFCI switch and outlet combination devices available for applications such as this.
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