New light switch question

t0by

Active Member
Afternoon all

I want to install a new light switch in my living room now that my plasma install is complete. We have one main light on the ceiling and we used to have two wall lights which are no longer in use (the wires have been hidden in the wall). There is a single existing double switch, one switch for the ceiling light, and the other for the redundant wall lights.

I want to replace the existing double switch with a single switch (just for the ceiling light) and I just need a bit of clarification on what happens with what wires. In the existing double switch there are two pairs of red and black, one pair for each switch. Clearly one pair needs to be used for the new single switch, but what happens to the redundant pair?

These lights are/were all controlled from this one double switch. There aren't any other switches for them.

Just to be clear, I am fully aware of all safety procedures associated with performing this kind of activity. I am safe and sensible and have been working on simple home electrics like this for years.

Thanks in advance.

Toby
 

putbinoot

Banned
It sounds to me as if the L + N is at the light fitting and this is just the feed to the switch and the switch wire back to the fitting. Not knowing how the old wall lights are terminated when hidden in wall i would just put a bit of 5amp connector block on the red and black and a bit tape round them and leave them in the switch box if you have room or push them out one of the box knockouts into the cavity. Make sure you test the cables are dead before handling them, don't rely on them all being dead just because the light goes out when you pull the fuse / switch the breaker off.
 

davehk

Active Member
It sounds to me as if the L + N is at the light fitting and this is just the feed to the switch and the switch wire back to the fitting. Not knowing how the old wall lights are terminated when hidden in wall i would just put a bit of 5amp connector block on the red and black and a bit tape round them and leave them in the switch box if you have room or push them out one of the box knockouts into the cavity. Make sure you test the cables are dead before handling them, don't rely on them all being dead just because the light goes out when you pull the fuse / switch the breaker off.
And don't do this test with a neon screwdriver - they are not reliable. Use a multimeter and test to earth as well as to neutral (cos if you have an open neutral a L-N test will show up as dead even if it is live!).
 

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