Renovating the garage and replacing the lights with ceiling outlets and eventually plug in LED lights. I'm going to install a single smart switch to control these lights from one end of the room and put a remote on the other end of the room. The source for the outlets is a sub panel that I installed (which passed inspection!). Because the source would most conveniently enter an outlet in the middle of the room, the wiring wasn't as straight forward as I originally anticipated. I drew it out and it makes sense, but just wanted to verify here before I start doing things. Apologies for the crappy image, hope it makes sense. The gist of it is I'll need 14-3 for the outlets leading to the switch, but 14-2 from the source to the outlet and the remaining outlets running away from the switch. Does this look right?

wiring diagram

Edit: thanks for the answers / comments thus far, but no one has actually answered the question yet. I think this diagram will work, but just wanted confirmation from someone with more knowledge to confirm.

  • This is on a 15A circuit, right? Commented Oct 24, 2020 at 23:49
  • Yea, that’s right. Putting the shop lights on their own 15 amp circuit, everything else 20 amps
    – BlueGuy
    Commented Oct 25, 2020 at 3:05

3 Answers 3


Looks GOOD!

  • you've got the neutral stubbed off at the switch (for future upgrade to smart switch)
  • you've got switched hot to all the outlets and neutral connected to each
  • the red black color switch is a bit confusing but works
  • you will also need your ground to each of them
  • IF this is outdoors, the first outlet in the chain should be a GFCI outlet in which case instead of pig-tailing the switched power you will feed the LINE and have the LOAD go out to the next one.
  • It looks like the first three outlets will be possible to convert in the future to always on, as they have the hot, neutral and switched wire all available in the box.?

I'd just use 14/3 throughout

If I were in your shoes, I'd use 14/3 throughout this circuit (homerun aside of course) with black as the always hot, red as the switched-hot, and white as the neutral. Why? Well, someone down the road, maybe even you, might want to change one or more of the receptacles to constant power from being switched, and without always-hot available at all locations, that's going to have a good chance of requiring the wiring to be rerun. It also simplifies the color-coding of the wires, which helps you keep track of things so you don't have surprises with regards to the behavior of the switch.

  • Would GFCI protection be requires for these? Yes, 14/3 all the way. +1
    – JACK
    Commented Oct 25, 2020 at 1:02
  • 1
    1. So my diagram will work though correct? 2. Yea that makes sense and I’ll probably do that. So the source wire will just be capped off then? That’s ok?
    – BlueGuy
    Commented Oct 25, 2020 at 1:51
  • 1
    @BlueGuy -- yeah, it's OK if the "stub end" source wire is capped off Commented Oct 25, 2020 at 3:14

Nobody likes switched outlets, uurgh. Why not simply wire the new lights in?

You could However, working from what 3phaseE mentioned, pop the tab and make each outlet half hot half switched. That wouldn't smell so bad....

  • I don’t know, I like switched ceiling outlets. And popping the tab won’t work as both outlets in each of the receptacles will be used for shop lights.
    – BlueGuy
    Commented Oct 25, 2020 at 3:06
  • Yeah ceiling outlets that aren't switched don't make much sense to me unless they're 10' back from a garage door... Commented Oct 25, 2020 at 4:52

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