A must do when building

sjolanderDecember 12, 2012

Add a plug outlet above each child's bedroom door for a night light... That way it will cast a soft glow over the whole room instead of shadows caused by furniture blocking the light.... Also a hall way switch in each bedroom so if the child gets up to go to the bathroom at night they can turn on the hall light before walking down the hall and turn it off when they get back to their room. Great for small children afraid of the dark! Also install a master panel by your bed that turns on each bedroom light and hall light so that if a child cries out in the middle of the night you can flip them on before you head down the hall. Also include a row of switches that turns on all outside lights if you hear a sound in the middle of the night.

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lazy_gardens

a hall way switch in each bedroom so if the child gets up to go to the bathroom at night they can turn on the hall light before walking down the hall and turn it off when they get back to their room

Can you draw me the circuit for how that would be wired in for three bedrooms? Along with the usual 2-way hall switches.

And tell me what's to prevent Child A from harassing child B by turning OFF the lights?

Also install a master panel by your bed that turns on each bedroom light and hall light so that if a child cries out in the middle of the night you can flip them on before you head down the hall.

And can you show me the wiring diagram for this ... keeping in mind the previous requirement for hall switches in the bedrooms ... a diagram that ensures that the master bedroom switching panel can override anything happening at the other switches.

======================
BTW, it would be a piece of cake for wireless computer controlled lighting, but that hasn't reached a stage where it's ready for homes. They haven't even set a standard for inter-operability which means you are locked in to whatever manufacturer you pick, and if they go out of business you are SOL for repairs and replacements.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 7:13AM
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millworkman

lazy, he registered the same day he made the post so take the post for what it is worth. He will probably reappear with spam shortly!

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 8:08AM
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Annie Deighnaugh

Hahahah! Reminds me of the conversation with my old boss, who was an extremely bright guy but a technical boob. When I was talking to him about building a home, he said what he always wanted was a single switch that he could flip before he went to bed so he'd know that all the lights in the house were off.

I told him I had such a switch. He said, really? He was so impressed!

I said, smiling sweetly, "Yes. It's called the main breaker."

He was very interested and wanted to know more. Meanwhile, all the engineers who were listening in on the conversation at the time started laughing (politely, of course as he was their boss too!)

Finally one of them explained that it would also turn off his freezer and refrigerator.....and in fact all the power to his house!

Such fun!

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 9:20AM
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mrspete

I'd vote for lights in the closets, which can be left cracked open when the kids are small and want a small light. This is something you're going to do anyway, so it's no extra cost or trouble.

However, if you have girls, they might appreciate the outlet above the door later when they're teens and want to string colored lights around the room.

I think the loads of light switches in the hallways and master bedroom would be expensive and odd-looking.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 9:47AM
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virgilcarter

What ever happened to the old "night light" that just plugged into a normal duplex outlet? Too simple, I guess.

Simple minds look for simple solutions...

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 10:02AM
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kirkhall

We are planning a remodel and one electrician told me (when I was just planning a 2 switch circuit) that they could do 3, 4, 5 switches... I was shocked. But, maybe it isn't such a crazy idea? I haven't tried to diagram that, but why would he suggest it?

I told him that we didn't need that many. The hall isn't that long, and 2 would be fine.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 10:54AM
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DLM2000

When we put our on our addition, my husband included a switch to our backyard lights in our 2nd story bedroom. Can't count the number of times one of us has forgotten to turn out the lights before coming to bed and it saves us a trip down the stairs to the back door where the other switch is. It also helps when we hear masked marauders in our garbage in the wee hours - we can flip on the light and actually watch them making a mess ..... not like the lights scare them or anything ;-)

But as for night lights, I'm with virgilcarter - KISS

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 11:01AM
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theballs

We have a motion sensor light switch in our laundry room. It seems like I always am carrying something (groceries, laundry, etc) through there, and the light just comes on, not to mention it is such an application specific room that if one of us is in there, we have the lights on because we are doing laundry or passing through to the garage. Best $15 ever.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 11:59AM
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bevangel_i_h8_h0uzz

OP. The outlet above the child's bedroom door for a nightlight actually sounds like it might be a good idea for those with small children.

As for the rest tho, I thought I went crazy with double and triple switched circuits! Even if you can find an electrician who can figure out how to wire what you're asking for, you DO NOT want to do it. With double and triple switched lights, it's easy to wind up with so many switches that you can never figure out which ones control what. After 2.5 years in our new house, I have two banks of switches that I'm STILL trying to figure out. If I had it to do over again, I'd go for a lot fewer double switched lights.

Consider instead just getting some nice LED nightlights that have sensors so they automatically cut off during the daytime and put those where ever you're likely to need light in the middle of the night. Most people getting up to use the bathroom (or check on a child) at night really don't WANT to turn on an overhead light because it's just TOOOOO bright for eyes dilated from sleep.

We wanted some nightlights for our upper hallway and stair case to ensure that overnight guests didn't accidentally take a tumble and found some that look like the lights you see on the edges of theater seats. They can be plugged in so that the light is thrown either upward or downward. Ours are antique brass and they fit in so nicely with our decor that I never unplug them except when I need the outlet to plug in the vacuum cleaner. We actually paid less than $10 each at WalMart. Below is a link...

Even if you don't like these at all, I'm sure if you look around, you can find nightlights that fit in with your decor so that you won't need so many switches.

Here is a link that might be useful: night light option

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 12:11PM
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lolauren

"And tell me what's to prevent Child A from harassing child B by turning OFF the lights?"

Yep. This applies even as Adult A and Adult B. ;) The light switch outside the lit-room is a prank waiting to happen...

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 4:13PM
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flgargoyle

I just put a new GFIC outlet in our bathroom, and it has a built-in night light. It's automatic, and surprisingly bright. I plan to use them in strategic places as I build our new house.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 4:16PM
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worthy

Can you draw me the circuit for how that would be wired in for three bedrooms? Along with the usual 2-way hall switches.

See below for diagram. It's a matter of adding four-way switches between three-way switches. I've had four-way switches wired in for switching from three locations. Like surgery, it looks easier than it is in reality. Expect later homeowners and "renovators" to be stumped and botch repairs.

Source: electrical-online.com

This post was edited by worthy on Thu, Dec 13, 12 at 16:44

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 4:40PM
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sweet.reverie

Many pediatricians actually try to dissuade parents from using nightlights. Light pollution is not good for a solid night sleep. A dark room is best.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 5:10PM
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frozenelves

I like to put a dimmer switch on my hall light so I can dim it at night and it acts like a night light but not in the bedroom, just for trips to the bath or my room. I would do night lights in the hall but we don't have plugs in the hall.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 5:26PM
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mrspete

theballs, I'm planning automatic lights in a number of places:

All closets
Laundry room
Pantry
Mudroom (which I wouldn't do, if it had a window)

If I had a window-less half-bath, I'd do an automatic light there too.

Bevangel, When we have guests, we leave the shower light turned on during the night. It's "softened" by the shower door, but it gives plenty of light for a person to find his way to the toilet in a strange bathroom. Of course, ours is towards the back of the bathroom, and it's positioned in such a position that it serves as a good guide to the toilet without shining into any bedroom doors.

Worthy, I totally agree that it's simple enough (though not necessarily cheap) to put in triple, quaduruple, whatever switches . . . such an extra-large set-up is likely to cause confusion for repair people in the future. I personally value simplicity, thinking that if you have more bells and whistles, you have more things that potentially may break. IF you go all-out to avoid walking a few feet to turn on/off the lights, you should absolutely take plenty of good photographs before the sheet rock goes up.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 6:54PM
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Annie Deighnaugh

We put a switch in the closet door in the foyer so the light comes on when you open the door, and I should've had him add one to the pantry door too. We have trouble with motion detectors as they don't work well with fluorescents...

We use an LED nightlight by the potty so we had the electrician put an outlet in there. The rest of our house doesn't really need night lights as it's so bright from the vampires....all the electrical stuff, security system panels, etc that glow night and day. We have our subwoofer built into the window seat so it's out of sight and even that thing glows through the slot to let the sound out! It's ridiculous. I had DH make a special folded sheet metal shield to block the clock on the cable box as it would keep me awake without it.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 7:45PM
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bigB1

The wussification and coddling of America's youth continues. Get them a flashlight and they'll be just fine.

    Bookmark   December 14, 2012 at 11:34AM
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