How Do You Replace a Light Switch?


Quick Answer

Replacing a wall light switch is an easy job that takes just a few minutes. Purchase a new switch and cover at your home improvement store. Gather needle-nosed pliers, wire strippers and screwdrivers.

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Full Answer

  1. Turn off the power at the electrical panel

    Locate the circuit that serves the switch. Flip the circuit breaker to the off position, or remove the fuse.

  2. Remove the cover

    Use a flathead screwdriver to remove the switch cover. Use an electrical tester to ensure the power to the switch is off before proceeding.

  3. Remove the switch

    Use a screwdriver to remove the screws at the top and bottom of the electrical to remove the switch. Loosen the electrical contacts. Remove the switch from the wires and box.

  4. Install the new switch

    Strip 3/4 inch of insulation from the wire. Use the pliers to bend the exposed wire into a semicircle. Place the black wire on the brass screw and the white wire on the silver screw. Attach the ground wire to the green screw on the switch. Press the excess wire back into the box and insert the screws to attach the switch to the box.

  5. Install the cover

    Place the new cover over the switch. Install the two screws into the holes, and tighten them until they are snug.

  6. Test the new switch

    Turn on the circuit breaker, and test the switch.

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