Create A Mood For Valentine's Day With A New Dimmer Switch

It's the most romantic day of the year, and you want the room to feel as cozy and intimate as possible. You could change to lower watt bulbs for the day, but you'll have a much better effect if you dim the lights just before relaxing together after a nice dinner.

Even if you don't have any knowledge of electrical work, there's no need to hire an electrical contractor to change a standard light switch to a dimmer switch.

What do you need to install a dimmer switch?

Toggle type dimmer switch

For a standard light switch that controls one light, you will need a single pole dimmer switch. A toggle type dimmer switch, which has a small toggle switch next to the regular light switch to adjust the level of light in the room, is less expensive than an electronic model and easier to install.

Non-contact voltage tester 

You can use this device to be certain that the old light switch is not powered before you begin to remove it. 

Flat head and philips head screwdrivers

Removing the old light switch

Before you begin any type of electrical work ,you must be sure that the power to the component is turned off, This is accomplished by turning off the circuit breaker that controls the flow of power to the component.

The door of your breaker box should have a chart that lists the locations controlled by each circuit breaker. However, these charts can be highly inaccurate. 

After turning off the breaker that you believe to be the correct one, flip the light switch on to see if the light comes on. In order to be absolutely certain that no power remains at the light switch, use the voltage tester according to the instructions.

Some voltage testers have indicator lights only while some are also equipped with warning sounds if power is present.

When you are sure that the power is out, you can begin by removing the two flat head screws that hold the switch cover in place. You will then loosen the upper and lower screws that secure the switch inside the wall.

Remove the two black wires from the sides of the switch by loosening the screw terminals that connect them, then pull out the switch.

Installing the dimmer switch

Your single pole dimmer switch will be equipped with either two black "hot " wires or one black and one red "hot" wire. There will also be a green ground wire.

You will connect one black wire to the top screw terminal and the other black or red wire to the bottom screw terminal by looping the bare wire ends under the screws in a clockwise direction. Tighten the terminal screws in the same direction until they are secured.

The green wire will be connected to the green screw on the back of the gang box inside the wall. Loosen the green screw, loop the green wire under it, and tighten the screw securely.

Push the switch into the gang box, tighten the two screws, and restore the switch plate. Turn on the breaker and you're ready to surprise your valentine. For more information, talk to a professional like Dunedin Electric Co., Inc.


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