Trying to install a smart light switch...


Old 01-07-19, 04:49 PM
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Trying to install a smart light switch...

this is my first post here, so please forgive me if I break protocol.
I am in Omaha Ne, for starters. I wish to install a smart wifi light switch in my basement, but requires a neutral wire. I only have the black wire going to the switch, a white wire coming out of the switch and then the ground. No fourth wire for neutral. A buddy suggested that I could split the black wire so it would power the switch and provide power where the neutral would normally provide power for the wifi part of the switch. Does this sound feasible? I'm not sure if that would be safe, or if it would be too much voltage, although I really can't see how that would be the case.

Thanks in advance!
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Old 01-07-19, 05:34 PM
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Hello and welcome!

As you've found, most smart switches require a hot and neutral wire. There are two solutions:

1) Some smart switches are designed to work with only a hot line. It sends a little trickle of current through the light bulb, and newer ones work with LED lights and such. The downside is that you have fewer options. What system are you planning?

2) You can replace the 2-wire (not including ground) cable from the switch to the light figure with a 3-wire. Depending on attic access and such, this could range from easy to hard, but is certainly doable. It would then give you the neutral you need.
Old 01-07-19, 05:41 PM
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Your fiend is wrong. The only way to get a neutral is to run a new cable.
Old 01-07-19, 06:27 PM
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I had a feeling this was the case. My lighting is actually recessed lighting and it's in a finished basement. I'm guessing I would have to take the fixtures out to rewire them, especially since I have no access from above.
Old 01-07-19, 07:19 PM
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Welcome to the forums.

You have a switch loop there. The power is brought to one of the fixtures and then a two wire cable is run down to the switch to just control/switch the hot wire. In order to get a neutral there...... you'd need to get a cable from that switch box to one of the fixtures. What switch were you going to use ?
Old 01-07-19, 08:13 PM
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I was hoping to use the kasa hs220 by tp link as I already have their smart bulbs for other fixtures

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