We have an old dimmer switch in a two-switch box (next to a regular light bulb) (in California). The old dimmer switch's button no longer works right, so we wanted to replace it with a new one. We got a Lutron switch to replace it, and I looked over the instructions, but when I saw the wiring of the old switch it made me hesitate. The main thing I'm concerned about is the ground wire.
From the old dimmer switch, there is a capped off (unused) black wire and it has a red wire and a black wire connected to white wires in the box. This is a little different from the new dimmer switch which just has two black wires (besides the ground wire), but as far as I know I would connect the two black wires to those two white wires. Feel free to comment if that is right or wrong.
But for the ground wire, what I expected was that the box would have a green or copper wire coming out of the box with the old dimmer switch's ground wire connected to it. Rather, the old dimmer switch's green ground wire looks to be almost grabbed onto by a group of wires like fingers.
So what should I do? Is this normal wiring? Is it safe? Should I mimic it with the new switch? Should I leave it to an electrician? Are there particular instructions that I should follow, or would I need any special tools to open/close the fingers around the ground wire if I were to do the same thing for the new dimmer switch?
As it is, I pushed everything back in the box and screwed it back in (I hadn't disconnected any of the wires). Thank you.