Digital Touch Screen Dimmer Switch Wiring

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  #1  
Old 12-04-11, 11:28 AM
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Digital Touch Screen Dimmer Switch Wiring

How can I wire a digital dimmer when all I have is hot and neutral?

The dimmer has 4 wires green(ground), Blue(load) black (hot) and White(neutral)


I've installed one upstairs without any issues. Now I need to install the same dimmer in one of room in my basement but all I have is 2 wires the hot and neutral from one cable. The "old" switch that I want to replace is a single pole toggle light switch.


Thanks


 
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  #2  
Old 12-04-11, 11:36 AM
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Now I need to install the same dimmer in one of room in my basement but all I have is 2 wires the hot and neutral from one cable.
That white* is not a neutral. It is a hot. You have a switch loop with no neutral. Easiest solution is a dimmer that doesn't use a neutral. Second easiest is two replace the 2-conductor switch loop cable (black, white, ground) with a 3-conductor cable (black,red, white, ground).

*A white wire used as a hot in a switch circuit by code must be recolored some color other then white green or gray but often that isn't done.
 
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Old 12-04-11, 11:56 AM
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I can't re-run a new cable those digital dimmers came in a box of 2 I have installed 1 and I need to use the other one somehow since I can't return it. So basically what you are saying is I can't use that dimmer with the wiring that I have?
 
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Old 12-04-11, 12:03 PM
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So basically what you are saying is I can't use that dimmer with the wiring that I have?
Yes. Plan C would be to run a cable from a near by power source such as a receptacle* to the switch box, disconnect and abandon in place the existing power in cable at the light and feed the light power from the switch using the existing cable from switch to light.

*Except restricted circuit receptacles such as laundry.
 
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Old 12-04-11, 12:24 PM
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Well I guess I'll abandon that project. Can I still use regular dimmer for a switch loop?
 
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Old 12-04-11, 02:12 PM
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Originally Posted by audiotek View Post
Well I guess I'll abandon that project. Can I still use regular dimmer for a switch loop?
Yes, so long as it doesn't require a neutral and the lights are incandescent. LEDs and CFLs require special dimers and bulbs but dimmers will generally work on a switch loop. Fluorescent fixtures require special ballasts and wiring.
 
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Old 12-04-11, 05:16 PM
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OK so I got a Lutron MAW-603-RH-WH, MAW-603-RH

Lutron MAW-603-RH Maestro Multi-Location 600W 120V Dimming Package - ProLighting.com


So if I understand this right I can use both hot on that dimmer. 1 Hot on the black screw and the other Hot(neutral) on the silver screw???? or blue screw??? Yeah I guess the guy at Home Depot didn't fully understand what I really needed
 
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Old 12-04-11, 06:39 PM
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That is a 3-way dimmer. You just need a simple cheap single location dimmer. Sometimes a 3-way dimmer can be used as a single location dimmer. I don't know about yours but I doubt it because of the silver screw.

other Hot(neutral [sic]) on the silver screw
No. Please stop right now and recolor the white wire black or red with a magic marker so you stop confusing yourself by thinking of it as neutral. The silver screw on that dimmer probably needs a neutral. Go back and just get a simple single location dimmer.
 
  #9  
Old 12-04-11, 08:21 PM
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Yeah while I was unpacking I realized it was the wrong dimmer, so I guess no neutral=no fency dimmer. I bought another one it's a Lutron MA-600HW-BLSS and that one has only 2 brass screws but I bought it to go in a room where there's 2 wires from the electrical box and 3 wires that goes to the fixture. Will that work?
 
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Old 12-04-11, 08:48 PM
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Only two brass screws will work. If by three wires you mean white, red, and black that was installed to have separate switches for a ceiling fan and ceiling fan light. Normally if used for light only the red is capped on both ends and only black and white are used.
 
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Old 12-04-11, 09:12 PM
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So I can use that dimmer by just using the 2 Hots? Yes the cable going up to the fixture is Red Hot and White I kind of noticed that the fancy dimmers need a neutral and a load wire but not that one!!!!

I guess I'm going back to HD tomorrow to exchange the other dimmers. What do I need to ask the sales guy at HD? I need a dimmer that will work with a switch loop and no neutral? Anything else because that's what I told the guy and he gave me dimmers with Neutral and load wires!!!!
 
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Old 12-04-11, 09:16 PM
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Thanks Ray for all the help I'll keep you posted on what's going on with that little project
 
  #13  
Old 12-04-11, 11:23 PM
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Been a while since I bought a dimmer but the old rotary knob ones just had two black wires coming out of them. Really haven't looked at a dimmer in a long time.
 
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Old 12-05-11, 05:47 AM
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So many choices and gadget nowadays it's unreal. And the simple dimmers are harder and harder to find. I like the simple slider type.
 
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