Replacing two dimmers: one single pole, one three way.


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Old 03-08-14, 06:54 PM
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Question Replacing two dimmers: one single pole, one three way.

I'm in California, USA

We had some switches wired up for dimmers, but need to remove the dimming option as we don't use it, and cant find dimmable CFLs that are the right size for the fixtures.

The switches are separate from each other, different circuits. They have nothing to do with each other other than they are physically next to each other in the same electrical box.

I've outlined my plan below and I'm looking for someone a little more experienced to tell me that I've got the right idea, or I'm totally off my rocker.

I've never done any electrical work before today, so I'm hoping for a little guidance on what I'm sure is a simple task for people with experience.

Thanks.

Single Pole switch:
This is the current state of the wires in the single pole dimmer
[ATTACH=CONFIG]28028[/ATTACH]

From my reading so far, it seems like I can attach the green -> green screw and attach each black wire to one gold screw, but it doesn't matter which one goes to which? That concerns me a bit.
[ATTACH=CONFIG]28029[/ATTACH]

Three Way switch:

Having rewired a CFL dimmer to one of these earlier today, I'm pretty sure the one black wire is the common, and that should be attached to the black screw on the new switch below. I also think each red wire can go to a brass screw and green->green for grounding.
[ATTACH=CONFIG]28030[/ATTACH]

[ATTACH=CONFIG]28031[/ATTACH]
The packaging for the switches said I could side or back wire the new switches. I was going to sidewire them by cutting what is currently in the wire nut and stripping back about a half inch of shielding before wrapping them around the screw.

Not sure if this will make a difference in how I wire it, the wires coming from the walls appear to be solid copper, and not twisted wire like what's coming from the light switches.
 
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Old 03-08-14, 06:59 PM
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You plan sounds correct. Using the screws not the backstabs is the better practice. Back stabs tend to be less reliable because only a small spring finger that can weaken over time holds the wire.
 
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Old 03-08-14, 07:04 PM
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Thank you for the quick reply and advice regarding the backwiring.

Just to be doubly sure, because it's the one that's bugging me the most, for the single pole switch, it doesn't matter which black wire connects to which screw?
 
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Old 03-08-14, 07:12 PM
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or the single pole switch, it doesn't matter which black wire connects to which screw?
That is correct.

.
 
 

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