Replacing light switch with Z-Wave

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Old 07-11-17, 02:33 PM
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Replacing light switch with Z-Wave

Hi everyone,

I bought a Z-Wave Leviton light switch hoping to control my exterior patio lights. I've changed a few receptacles before but haven't changed a light switch before. I thought it would be as simple as the receptacle (as stated in the diagram) but it looks like the wiring is a bit different.

I've taken some images and a quick video to see if I can get some advice from you guys on what to do.

I am trying to replace this switch:







The confusion I am having is the Leviton switch seems to requires the black, white, and red wires in this diagram:



Full Image Resolution: http://i.imgur.com/KwVJVWs.jpg



Would anyone be able to give me a bit of advice how I would go about wiring the new switch?

Here are more images of the two switches. I am changing the exterior light (on the right), and keeping the interior light (on the left) as is.





Thanks for any help you can provide!
 
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Old 07-11-17, 04:13 PM
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Welcome to the forums.

As a new member.... since you posted five or more pictures.... your post was in moderation. It has been approved.

You have a fairly easy job there.
The two black wires can be used just as they are on the new switch.
You will need to add a short piece of white wire to the neutral splice for the switch.

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Old 07-12-17, 05:43 AM
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If those switches are not listed as self grounding then the ground needs to be directly connected to the ground screw on the switches. I don't see any grounds to the switches.
 
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Old 07-12-17, 08:03 AM
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Wow thank you for the diagram, I will be browsing these forums more often. I will head to home depot today and pickup some wiring and try it out.

I noticed there was no grounding wire though on either switches, but there is copper attached to the ground screws in the back. Do you think that is fine? Or do I need to attach copper wire to the ground screw and then the back of the box?
 
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Old 07-12-17, 08:09 AM
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Thanks pattenp, I was wondering this as well. I noticed there is copper attached to the ground screws at the back of the box. Do you think its safer to just go ahead and ground the other two switches?
 
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Old 07-12-17, 10:08 AM
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To be on the safe side attach ground to each outlet and also the box.
 
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Old 07-13-17, 12:39 PM
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Thanks pattenp. I bought 1M of 14 AWG wire. Does the ground wire have to be bare? Or can I use insulated ground wire as well?
 
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Old 07-13-17, 01:11 PM
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The ground wire can be green insulated or bare.
 
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Old 07-13-17, 02:37 PM
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Thanks PJmax, I've been told mixed things. Some people say since the metal box is grounded the switches don't have to be. What is the difference if I were to not ground it?
 
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Old 07-13-17, 02:46 PM
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Technically the switches are grounded thru the mounting screws. The ground screw on the switches is primarily for use in a plastic box.

Since the screws to the box could be loose and the switches move.... the ground is not considered 100% solid. Hence the reason for the ground wire.

In my opinion....
On a receptacle.... the ground wire is a must. On a switch.... it's optional.
 
 

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