Need advice on switched outlets

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  #1  
Old 10-10-06, 11:28 PM
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Need advice on switched outlets

I just bought an older home, and in the living room there is a switch which controls power to an outlet mounted in the floor as well as all of the outlets on the wall (about 5 of them). Because my television and related equipment is plugged into one of these, the switch has to be kept on all the time and is pretty useless as it is now.

What are my options? Ideally I'd like to have the switch only control the outlet in the floor so it can turn a lamp on and off. I'm not really interested in installing a ceiling mount. If nothing else, my fallback plan was to simply connect the wires in the switch box to be always on, and either leave the disconnected switch there or put a solid plate over the box.

By the way, I'm obviously no electrician. I've replaced switches, lights, and outlets (all in existing wall boxes), but that's about it.

Any help would be appreciated!
 
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  #2  
Old 10-11-06, 12:02 AM
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How many cables are in the switch box? It likely has two cables, with each black on the switch and the whites tied together in the back or it has a single cable with the white and black on the switch.

I'm guessing it's the latter, and that the receptacles were replaced at some point and one of them was wired incorrectly, causing all of them to be switched instead of just half of one of them.

If so, you'll be able to return it to the original configuration easily enough, but we don't know yet WHICH one of the receptacles used to be the switched one. Changing that to a different one would require pulling new wires somewhere.
 
  #3  
Old 10-11-06, 07:02 AM
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Are you sure it switches the entire receptacle. Often only the top or bottom is switched.
To determine if this is possible to change you need to open the switch box and the floor recptacle and tell us how the wires are connected. Turn off power first. We may need to open some of the wall receptacles also but lets start with these.
 
  #4  
Old 10-11-06, 09:32 AM
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Originally Posted by joed
Are you sure it switches the entire receptacle. Often only the top or bottom is switched...
Actually, he's saying it controls SEVERAL entire receptacles. Or are you thinking it might control half of EACH ONE? I suppose that could be possible if someone wired it that way on purpose for a specific lighting theme.
 
  #5  
Old 10-11-06, 11:21 AM
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Tonight I'll test the outlets to verify it is both plugs on each of them.

I'll also open them up and take a look at the wiring, then post my findings.

Thanks again.
 
  #6  
Old 10-11-06, 03:20 PM
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Originally Posted by MAC702
Actually, he's saying it controls SEVERAL entire receptacles. Or are you thinking it might control half of EACH ONE? I suppose that could be possible if someone wired it that way on purpose for a specific lighting theme.
It is not uncommon to switch half of a set of receptacles.
 
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