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How to Wire a Light Switch

It can be downright frustrating to do electrical work.

But I found a light switch that’s easy to install and looks awesome.

I almost had my daughter wire this light switch but then imagined what my wife would say!!

If your switches look old and grimy you may need to replace them.

Especially if you want a modern looking home.

Today I’m going to show you how easy it is to install a new switch.

And I’ve got a give away that could literally save your life 😀

Every week I walk through Lowe’s or Home Depot looking for the newest supplies.


So I can share what I find with you.

This past Saturday I spotted something really cool: Adorne light switches.

Adorne light switches

Maybe I’ve been living under a rock but I’ve never seen these before.

After investigating the Adorne switches and outlets I decided to buy one.

I did this for two reasons

  1. To see how they differ from traditional switches and
  2. To share a few super important electrical tips with you.

Plus, Adorne has a ton of different color options that other switches don’t have.

Red, black, purple…you name it they have it.

Here’s your supply list for installing this kind of light switch

The Adorne switch isn’t cheap.

But if you’re going for a sleek modern look it could be the answer.

Okay, let me show you how to wire a light switch in about 5 minutes without shocking yourself!

5 smart tips everyone should know when removing light switches

You might know some of my tips.

But I bet you don’t know all 5 (kudos to you if you do!!)

Here they are

  1. Turn off the electricity at the panel or fuse box (I bet you know this one)
  2. Score around the tabs of the old light switch
  3. Double check the electricity with a non-contact voltage tester
  4. Take a picture of the old switch’s wiring
  5. Rub the copper wires with emery cloth

Let me quickly address these tips.

Always, ALWAYS, turn off the electricity to your switch at the electric panel or fuse box.

Turn off electricity

Find the breaker or fuse that controls the switch’s power.

If you can’t locate the specific circuit just go ahead and turn off the entire panel.

Scoring the intersection between the old switch’s tabs and wall will prevent you from tearing the paint.

Score switch tabs

Sometimes prior homeowners (not you of course) paint over the switch’s tabs.

When you go to remove the old switch it will tear the old paint off the wall.

Now you have to repaint or worse yet patch the wall.


Sore the tabs, you’ll thank me later.

Double check the electricity is turned off by placing your non-contact voltage tester next to the switch terminals.

Use voltage tester

The tester will beep if there’s electricity still running to the switch.

In my early DIY days I didn’t use a voltage tester.


One time I was replacing a switch in our bathroom.

Since the power was off to the light I figured the switch wasn’t live.

Next thing I knew there was a nice shock running up my left arm and into my chest.

Fortunately my wife didn’t collect any insurance money from State Farm.

If you don’t want to get shocked then use a voltage tester, it’s the most important tool for any electrical project.

Taking a picture of the old wiring is just flat out smart.

Take picture of wiring

Pictures give you a reference for how to wire the new switch.

Hey, my 73 year old Mom has an iPhone and now texts.

Love you Mom 😀

Finally, use emery cloth to make your copper wires shine.

Emery cloth wires

This improves the contact between the copper wire and new switch.

I’ve wired switches before and they didn’t work simply because the old copper wires were oxidized too much.

A few emery cloth applications later the switch was working with no problem.

Once your old switch is removed you can wire up the new one.

I’ll show you why I like the Adorne switches.

How to wire an Adorne light switch

Some people pay $4 for Starbuck’s coffee.

I drink green tea from home and spend my money on new light switches.

What a nerd, right?

Like I said earlier, Adorne switches aren’t cheap.

But sometimes cheap isn’t what you want in your new kitchen, bathroom, or living room.

Check out my video to see all my tips in action and why you might like the Adorne switches for certain rooms. They’re pretty cool.

What’s Next

Wiring a switch is very similar to wiring an outlet.

But remember, bathrooms and kitchens need GFCI outlets – our tutorial shows you step-by-step how to install one.

If you’re doing a bathroom remodel and need help, join one of our online courses – they’ll make your bathroom renovation much easier!

Let me know if you have any questions and I’ll do my best to help.

Thanks as always for reading, watching, and being part of our awesome community.



Wire a Light Switch