New dimmer switch, too many wires


Old 03-16-04, 09:10 PM
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New dimmer switch, too many wires

I just got a dimmer switch. It has four wires altogether that come out from the center of the switch, two black wires, one red wire and one green wire.

When I opened up the switch box of the existing switch in the wall, I found three wires attached. One green wire (which I'm assuming is the ground wire) and two black wires. One black wire is attached on top and one black wire is attached to the bottom.

1) What do I do with the red wire?

2) Does it matter which black wire is attached to other existing black wires that are running from the wall?
Old 03-17-04, 09:09 AM
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Is the new switch replacing a 3-way? One of the blacks from the switchbox is the hot leg the other is going to the light.The ground is always bare or green.This is just a single pole swithc setup, A 3-way will still work its just more expensive to buy.Because of the electronics in dimmers you must shut off power to the circuit{safer anyway},the dimmer will burnout otherwise.Good luck,be careful.
Old 03-17-04, 01:18 PM
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As ampz suggested, it sounds like you bought a 3-way dimmer when only a single-pole dimmer was required. If so, you can save some money by exchanging it. Some dimmers are sold as either 3-way or single pole. If you have one of those, follow the directions for the single-pole connection (which will involve leaving one wire unconnected).
Old 03-27-04, 03:00 AM
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You have a Leviton dimmer and on that particular dimmer the red wire is the common wire. Just put a wire nut on one of the black wires on the dimmer (doesn't matter which one) and just use the red and black comming out of the back of the dimmer and connect those 2 wires to your 2 wires (doesnt matter how just as long as it is one to one) and then green to ground and you are done. But you may want to save yourself a coule ofbucks as suggested and get the single pole dimmer instead

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