new dimmer not working

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  #1  
Old 09-18-14, 03:07 PM
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new dimmer not working

Hi all

I swapped out 19 older outlets, switches, and covers for these nice ones like these a couple of weekends ago and this dimmer is the only one that has been a problem. No dimmer existed before (just a regular switch). This is the only dimmer, and it's not working. Like won't allow the lights to turn off at all. Just red and black wires in the box and it bothers me that there is no white or ground wire. The other holes on the right say '3 pole' and this is just a 2 pole switch location. It's not a 3 way switch location. I tried swapping the wires / holes between the 2 'non 3 pole holes'. Still nothing. I tried 2 different dimmers (same brand). Nothing. Lights still stay on. They are incandescent floor lamps plugged into the switchable outlets.

Should I try using one wire in the 3 pole position? If so... which one, red or black?

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  #2  
Old 09-18-14, 03:26 PM
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It is a code violation to use a dimmer on a receptacle. No sense trying to figure out why it doesn't work because it must be removed. If someone plugs something in to a receptacle with a dimmer something very expensive could be damaged.

Either install a dimmer receptacle with a rejection tab and swap out the plug on the lamp to one for a dimmer receptacle or buy a plug in lamp dimmer. The dimmer receptacle won't match your new receptacles though so a plug in lamp dimmer is the best solution.

Example of lamp dimmer: http://www.homedepot.com/p/Lutron-Cr...H-WH/100001525
 
  #3  
Old 09-18-14, 05:28 PM
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Odds are, changing out so many receptacles that some of them had the tabs broken so you could switch the top or bottom receptacle. You probably didn't catch that and that's why the lamps won't dim, or switch off.

But, as Ray indicates it is a code violation as you have it now.
 
  #4  
Old 09-18-14, 05:43 PM
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Thx Ray, I didn't even think of that! I've bought some of those dimmer switches in black before, I'll get a couple more. thx!
 
  #5  
Old 09-18-14, 06:41 PM
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After you remove the dimmers go back and check the receptacles for tabs as suggested by
Aandpdan. Chances are if you have both a red and black wire connected to the receptacle the tab should be removed. (But I didn't say 100%.)
 
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