Return to the Electrical Wiring Forum | Post a Follow-Up

 o
4 Switches to 2?

Posted by sophie123 (My Page) on
Tue, Mar 20, 12 at 14:46

I have a den that when built in the 90s they put in 4 single pole switches - one for ceiling fan and three for lights around the room (like two recessed lights each) each with a rotary dial for dimming. Its annoying and the dimmer caps have worn out. I'm repainting the room so i'm thinking of trying to fix that. Ideally i'd like one dimmer switch for all the recessed lights that is modern like lutron maestro and one control for the fan. I'd like to add a light kit for fan if it isn't too ugly so dual control on that.

So my questions are:
1) is it going to require an electrican to go from 4 gang wall plate to 2 gang wallplate? ie 4 switches to 2 switches. does it need a new box mounted? not sure i'm up for that.
2) if i got a light kit can i control that individually with a lutron fan light switch.
3) if i can't go away from the 4 switches, any suggestions on how to make it simple to turn off and on all the lights in the room?

Thanks!


Follow-Up Postings:

 o
RE: 4 Switches to 2?

"is it going to require an electrican to go from 4 gang wall plate to 2 gang wallplate? ie 4 switches to 2 switches. does it need a new box mounted? not sure i'm up for that. "

It will take a new box & wall patching.

Not very difficult though.

You can get wireless kits to control fan speed and lighting.

For hard wired control you need extra wires from the switch to the fan.

How easy it is to change from multiple light switches to a single switch depends on how it is wired.

If power comes to the switch box and is than split there it is very easy.
If there are separate switch loops (possible, but unlikely) it likely would be a little more difficult (and might involve running some new cables).


 o
RE: 4 Switches to 2?

The 4 switches offer a flexibility that will be lost if changes are made. It is possible at present to operate just a few of the lights or more in combinations that will not be possible later. Electricity costs will rise for the foreseeable future.
If it was mine, I would retain the present system.

Here is a link that might be useful: Discussion


 o
RE: 4 Switches to 2?

"The 4 switches offer a flexibility that will be lost if changes are made. "

Or you can use a single dimmer.


 o
RE: 4 Switches to 2?

Still mulling this over. Thanks for the insight and instructions on how to fix!


 o
RE: 4 Switches to 2?

Ok i decided to keep all the switches and go to the decorator dimmer style by Lutron (Diva) which are easier to flip all on or off. I turned off the circuit breaker and opened up the switches. The old dimmers had no ground wire while my new Lutron switches have a green wire. The box is metal and in the back is a bunch of bare metal copper wires taped together. I assume they are the ground wires. Do i take the ground wires of the new switches, twist them together with a pig tail and take the pig tail and twist it with the old bare wires in the back of the box? I found a bare copper wire - can i use that as the pig tail? Thanks!


 o
Another question: 4 Switches to 2?

Ok i decided to keep all the switches and go to the decorator dimmer style by Lutron (Diva) which are easier to flip all on or off. I turned off the circuit breaker and opened up the switches. The old dimmers had no ground wire while my new Lutron switches have a green wire. The box is metal and in the back is a bunch of bare metal copper wires taped together. I assume they are the ground wires. Do i take the ground wires of the new switches, twist them together with a pig tail and take the pig tail and twist it with the old bare wires in the back of the box? I found a bare copper wire - can i use that as the pig tail? Thanks!


 o
Another question: 4 Switches to 2?

Ok i decided to keep all the switches and go to the decorator dimmer style by Lutron (Diva) which are easier to flip all on or off. I turned off the circuit breaker and opened up the switches. The old dimmers had no ground wire while my new Lutron switches have a green wire. The box is metal and in the back is a bunch of bare metal copper wires taped together. I assume they are the ground wires. Do i take the ground wires of the new switches, twist them together with a pig tail and take the pig tail and twist it with the old bare wires in the back of the box? I found a bare copper wire - can i use that as the pig tail? Thanks!


 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!


Return to the Electrical Wiring Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.


Learn more about in-text links on this page here