Change switch that controls outdoor outlet & lamp post


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Old 03-28-08, 11:38 AM
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Angry Change switch that controls outdoor outlet & lamp post

I have a light switch in my entry way that controls both an outdoor outlet and an outdoor lamp post. So, in order for the outlet to work I have to have the lamp post on at the same time and vice versa. I would like to separate these 2 if possible because it makes things a bit inconvenient. For example, I can't install a timer for exterior lights unless the outlet is on all day, which would make the lamp post on all day (not necessary). Also, just to run a leaf blower or another piece of electrical equipment I need to go inside the house and flip the switch.

Is it possible to make the outdoor outlet always on and just have the lamp post controlled by the switch? Hopefully without too much digging or tearing through walls. Thanks for any help!!
 
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Old 03-28-08, 11:50 AM
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It is possible. It just depends on how it is wired now. We need to know what cables and wires are in the switch box and the receptacle box.
 
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Old 03-28-08, 11:55 AM
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Originally Posted by CPie65 View Post
Is it possible to make the outdoor outlet always on and just have the lamp post controlled by the switch? Hopefully without too much digging or tearing through walls. Thanks for any help!!
Probably not. In order to do that, you would need to have an additional wire between the house and the lamp post. Usually this would be a red wire in a 12/3 or 14/3 UF cable. The lamp post was probably installed with 12/2 wire because it's cheaper, but it's worth it to have a look inside one of the junction boxes to see what wires you have.

Assuming you only have two conductors (black,white,bare) you have a few options. The first is that you can leave the swtich on all the time (or bypass the switch) and install a photo sensor switch on the lamp post so it only turns on at night. You could also get a "home automation" remote control switch from Smarthome, X10 or a similar company to control the lamp bulb while leaving the receptacle powered all the time.
 

Last edited by ibpooks; 03-28-08 at 12:53 PM.
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Old 03-28-08, 12:37 PM
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the other thing you have to watch out is the outdoor repectale it is a mantory GFCI requirement but otherwise both Joed and Ibpooks pretty much got right on the spot with the options you can do.

oh the other thing just make sure you don't have the outside repectale on kitchen SABC at all [ it is not allowed per NEC ]

Merci,Marc
 
 

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