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Help with wiring switch timer and possibly combining 2 switches

Help with wiring switch timer and possibly combining 2 switches

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  #1  
Old 05-02-17, 06:07 PM
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Help with wiring switch timer and possibly combining 2 switches

I have a timer coming tomorrow that I would like to replace the switch on the far right (actually far left as it upload upside down). The timer has a blue, black, white, green and the switch has 2 blacks and a ground. I do have an AC meter if I need to check anything but I haven't messed with wiring in while so wanted to ask for help. Is it obvious looking at my pic what wires on the timer go where?

Also the switch with 2 red wires -- it goes to a lamp post -- I was thinking of combining the 2 switches and putting both on the timer. Is that possible? All the switches are on the same breaker.

I appreciate any help. Thanks.



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  #2  
Old 05-02-17, 06:30 PM
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You can put them on the same timer. You will need to determine, with your meter, which black and which red wire are hot. They should come from a common source, so you may have to dig into the box a little. Connect one of the hots to the back wire of your switch. Connect the other black and the other red from the second switch to the blue wire. You will need to dig and find the white wire bundle in the box, install a pigtail to the bundle and connect it to the white wire of the dimmer. The green is, of course, ground.
 
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Old 05-02-17, 06:31 PM
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Hi, first make sure you have a neutral in the box, which looks like you do, the white from the new timer will connect to that group, as for controlling 2 loads from the timer with your meter test and find out which wires on the switches are dead when the switches are in the Off position, tie those two conductors of the load side of the timer, remove one of the feed conductors from the switch and connect it to the line of the timer, cap the remaining feed conductor from the other switch and tuck it back in the box.
Geo
 
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Old 05-02-17, 06:32 PM
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Use your meter to find which of the two black wires going to the switch is hot when the switch is off. That goes to the timer black wire. The other black from the switch goes to the Timer blue. It looks like you have a bundle of white wires wire nutted together in the back of your box; the white wire gets added to the bundle. Green goes to bare ground wire bundle.

For the other switch, find out which red is *not* hot when the switch is off, and connect that one to the blue wire also. Just wire nut the other red wire and leave it unconnected.

If you don't have a bundle of white wires, you may not have a neutral in the box; that would mean using a different kind of timer.
 
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Old 05-02-17, 06:42 PM
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Ok... the bottom wires are hot all the time and the top when the switch is on. I do have a bundle of whites nutted together. From the replies, I think I got it. I appreciate everyone's help.
 
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Old 05-02-17, 06:53 PM
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Maybe dumb but there are 4, maybe even 5 white wires under a red nut. Can I separate them into 2 separate nuts when I add the timer wire or do they need to be together?

Does pigtail mean cut one of the whites a few inches from the current nut and then tie those 2 ends with the new timer wire?
 
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Old 05-02-17, 07:08 PM
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No, they all need to be together. Use a red bcap if needed. Pigtail is using a new piece of wire from a bundle to an application. You may or may not need to do that.
 
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Old 05-02-17, 08:08 PM
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Can I separate them into 2 separate nuts when
A lot of electrical is just logic. There is only one "neutral in". The rest are "neutral out". All "neutrals out" need to be connected to the "neutral in". Any circuits whose neutral you disconnect from the "neutral in" will no longer work.

A pigtail is a short length of wire, usually 6"-8" long the same color and gage as the wires you are connecting to.
Does pigtail mean cut one of the whites a few inches from the current nut and then tie those 2 ends with the new timer wire?
That is not the way it is usually done. You normally add a new wire but it would work. As stated though best to just use a larger wire nut.
 
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Old 05-02-17, 09:05 PM
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When you attach the white wire..... carefully take the wire nut off. You don't want to take the connection apart. Make sure your white wire is stripped an inch. Carefully wrap the stranded wire tightly around the bundle and recap.
 
 

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