Replacing dimmer switch (no ground)


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Old 06-23-18, 05:28 PM
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Replacing dimmer switch (no ground)

Alright, old house here. The dimmer switch knob and shaft both broke on me, so time to replace the dimmer.

I thought it would be simple enough, find any 600 W max, incandescent...

Then I realized when looking into the box, there is no ground. The switch itself had no ground input as it's an old house, but it seems all new dimmer switches these days are expected to have a ground attached.

As I understand, I can just buy a cheap modern day Dimmer switch, and ignore the ground connection. This should make it no more safer/dangerous than the previous dimmer. Correct?



I just wan't to check for a 2n'd opinion here from the experts.
 
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Old 06-23-18, 05:47 PM
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I realize I have another question now. Seems different dimmers have a different number listed for Amps. And some don't list it at all.

Maybe I'm over-thinking this, but don't I need to have things exact?

I had been hoping this was simple, and I could just grab something generic at Lowes like this:

Switch
 
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Old 06-23-18, 06:10 PM
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Grounds are not needed for function. Just coil it up and leave unconnected.

As long as load does not exceed rated amps for the dimmer you are okay.
 
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Old 06-24-18, 11:18 AM
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Old devices didn't have a ground tail as they were expected to be used in a metal box and that provided the ground. Now with many plastic boxes in use.... a method was needed to connect the device to ground..... so the ground tail was added.

Most basic dimmers are 600w. Specialty dimmers for CFL/LED's are rated a lot lower.
 
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Old 07-02-18, 12:14 AM
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I picked one up from Lowes, but it's a little more complicated than I had expected. Will possibly return it and get a much more simpler one from Home depot, with only 2 black wires (which matches two black wires already from the box).

I just hope that there is no issue with getting the two blacks mixed up in any way.

I will try to see if I can figure out which one is live if it makes a difference.
 
 

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