Replacing a Three Position Light Fixture Switch
Replacing a Rotary Switch for a Three Level Light Fixture – The light fixture that you are describing uses what is called a Rotary – Three Way switch. This type of rotary three way switch is used in a variety of light fixtures that have three levels of lighting.
Switch for a Light Fixture
Electrical Question: What type of electrical switch do I need to replace a faulty one in a Gone with the Wind Lamp. This lamp, if you are not familiar, works this way: The 1st turn of the switch, bottom Night light comes one. The 2nd turn of switch, the top globe comes on and the bottom turns off. The 3rd turn of the switch, both globes come on.The 4th turns off.
This electrical wiring question came from: Mike, a Homeowner from Lexington, Kentucky.
Dave the Electrician’s Reply:
Thanks for your electrical wiring question Mike.
Replacing a Rotary Three Position Light Fixture Switch
Application: Replacing a Switch for a Table Light Fixture
Skill Level: Beginner to Intermediate.
Tools Required: Basic Electricians Pouch Hand Tools and Voltage Tester.
Estimated Time: Depends on personal level experience and ability to work with hand tools.
Precaution: Unplug the light fixture from the wall outlet or power source before working with the wiring and replacing the switch.
Materials: Make sure the replacement light switch has the same amperage and voltage rating as the original switch, and is fully compatible with the light fixture and the type of light bulbs that are being used.
The light fixture that you are describing uses what is called a Rotary – Three Way switch.
This type of rotary three way switch is used in a variety of light fixtures that have three levels of lighting.
These rotary light switches have 3-wires:
- The black wire is for the main supply of power.
- The red wire for the first level of light.
- The blue wire for the second level of light.
- The third light level is accomplished by sending power to both the first and second lights, thereby turning all three levels of the lighting on.
More about Wiring Light Switches
Based on this question the following specific links may be helpful to you:
Wiring a Light Switch – Diagram 1
Fully Explained Light Switch Wiring Diagrams by the electrician. Detailed Electrical Wiring Diagrams and Pictures assist your Home Electrical Projects.
You identified your project to be about Light Switch Wiring, so you might find this information useful:
Diagrams for Wiring a Light Switch
Fully explained pictures and wiring diagrams about wiring light switches describing the most common switches starting with photo diagram 1.
Be Careful and Be Safe - Never Work on Energized Circuits!
Consult your Local Building Department about Permits and Inspections for all Electric Wiring Projects.
The Safest Way to Test Electrical Devices and Identify Electric Wiring!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, [amazon.com], I use for the detection of Standard 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.
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