Step 1: Turn Off Power
Before you begin, make sure to turn off the power to the circuit that you’ll be working on. This can be done at the circuit breaker or fuse box.
Step 2: Remove Existing Switch
Remove the existing switch and disconnect the wires from it. Take note of which wires are connected to the common terminal, traveler terminals, and ground terminal.
Step 3: Install Dimmer Switch
Install the dimmer switch in the same location as the old switch. Connect the wires to the corresponding terminals on the dimmer switch. The common wire should be connected to the black or dark-colored screw, while the traveler wires should be connected to the brass-colored screws. The ground wire should be connected to the green screw.
Step 4: Install Companion Switch
If you’re installing a 3 way dimmer switch, you’ll also need to install a companion switch. This switch will control the same lights as the dimmer switch, but won’t have the ability to dim them. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to install the companion switch.
Step 5: Test the Switches
Turn the power back on and test the switches to make sure they’re working properly. If everything is functioning as it should, you’re good to go!
Q: Can I install a 3 way dimmer switch if I only have 2 wires?
A: No, a 3 way dimmer switch requires 3 wires – a common wire and 2 traveler wires.
Q: Can I use a regular switch as a companion switch?
A: No, a companion switch is specifically designed to work with a 3 way dimmer switch. Using a regular switch could cause wiring issues.
Q: Can I use LED bulbs with a 3 way dimmer switch?
A: Yes, but make sure the dimmer switch is compatible with LED bulbs. Not all dimmer switches are created equal, and some may not work properly with LED bulbs.
Wiring a 3 way dimmer switch may seem intimidating, but it’s actually a fairly simple process. Just make sure to turn off the power before you begin, and follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully. With a little patience and know-how, you’ll have a dimmer switch installed in no time!