The 1st image below is a typical diagram for a switch with 2 lights. I have a scenario where I can't wire the 2 lights in series because they go off in different directions. Can I wire it like the 2nd (modified) image below?

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  • We wire lights in parallel not in series. You can tap the conductors at the existing light or the switch location.
    – Ed Beal
    Sep 26, 2018 at 21:41
  • Neither of these is series. Be aware that in many cases power does not come as illustrated, conveniently into the switch box first from a different direction than the lights.
    – Ecnerwal
    Sep 27, 2018 at 0:00
  • This is a step up from the usual MS Paint drawings. It looks like you cut apart the first image and reassembled it in Photoshop or another image editor.
    – user76859
    Sep 27, 2018 at 0:50
  • The first image shows the lights electrically in parallel even though the cable is going in series to each light.
    – user253751
    Sep 27, 2018 at 3:13

1 Answer 1


I the simplest of terms. Yes you can.

  • Thanks. Previously, there were 2 sets of wires running from the box to one of the lights. I am assuming one going to the light, and one going back to the same box, where I assume it connected to the other light. Is there a preferred method? I would assume running just one wire is easier.
    – Mike
    Sep 26, 2018 at 20:08
  • No, that was probably power coming from the light fixture location to the switch, and switched power going back to the light(s).
    – Ecnerwal
    Sep 26, 2018 at 23:58
  • One line winning answer. Also a win for OP since they did their homework. Sep 27, 2018 at 2:25
  • There are 2 romex cables running from the switch to one light fixture and they are not live. That is what confused me. It sounds like I can wire it like I show in the 2nd image and just remove one of the wires. Thanks!
    – Mike
    Sep 27, 2018 at 14:13

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