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Was trying to replace light switch because old one was not aesthetically pleasing. Thought this was going to be easy as Ive done many before but was thrown off by so many black wires. Not sure what wire goes where and when I try to turn on the breaker it automatically trips back. Please help!!! enter image description hereenter image description hereenter image description hereenter image description here

  • just connect it up the way it was with the old switch – jsotola Mar 16 at 6:45
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    Hello Jordan, welcome to this Stack Exchange site. I suggest to post a higher resolution picture with less non-essential border. The current mini-picture at 320x240 is so small and blurry it is hard to see what is going on in the electrical box. – Michael Karas Mar 16 at 9:17
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    I really hope you took a picture BEFORE dismantling everything – MonkeyZeus Mar 16 at 12:54
  • do you have testing equipment? have you done any testing? – Ack Mar 16 at 14:00
  • Unfortunately I did not take a picture how it looked before; dont have any testing equipment. Wonder how I can identify the different black wires? – Jordan Vazquez Mar 16 at 14:19
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If your new switch is the same as the old you have skinned a wire or have hot touching ground. You should be able to connect all of the black wires together and the light would be on all the time and not trip the breaker . The switch is a simple open closed device. 1 hot feeding another device and the switch to the light when the switch is in the on position all the wires are connected. You need to find the short, it could be by chance the lamp failed with a short , not likely but a possibility a skinned black wire touching the metal box will cause the breaker to trip.

Another possibility is a switch leg where white is used as a hot I cannot clearly see the rest of the wiring , if you only messed with the 1 pig tail (just black wires) look for the damaged insulation.

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  • Is there any way to figure out which black wires get pig tailed and which wire should be by itself? Does the light switch have to have 2 black wires connected to it or will just 1 suffice? – Jordan Vazquez Mar 19 at 18:10
  • Yes connect all but 1 when the light doesn’t light that single goes on the light by itself. You might get it on the first try or 4th but that’s not two hard to do , Mark the wires you test so you don’t loose track, fingernail polish great for marking – Ed Beal Mar 19 at 18:23

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