The picture describes it better than I can, but here is the plan. Run a circuit off the panel (hot, neutral, ground) into a GFCI. Off the load side of the GFCI run wires into a light switch box that will control two sets of lights (all lights plugged into outlets). The hot will be pig tailed in the light switch box to feed both switches, while the neutral passes straight through to the first outlet box. In this outlet box I will pig tail the neutral (now have two hots and two neutrals in this box). These two sets of wires will supply two separate sets of lights.

Is this plan valid and safe?

proposed schematic

  • @J... You mean the neutral will need spliced in the first box after the GFCI, the one with two switches? Why there since it plays no role in the with the switch?
    – tnknepp
    Nov 15, 2020 at 20:09
  • 1
    @J... I think I see what you're saying. I should have added that detail. This is in EMT with individual conductors.
    – tnknepp
    Nov 16, 2020 at 11:00

2 Answers 2


Looks good - you're not switching the neutral, the loads are all in parallel, and the conductors are kept together.



Yeah, that looks fine. The only thing I'm not a fan of is having lights on GFCI. I would revisit Code to confirm that's really necessary in your district, avoid it altogether if possible.

If not possible, I would want separate GFCIs on each switch so that a GFCI trip doesn't plunge you into the pitch black. (I'm assuming they're all lighting a large room, garage, etc.) FWIW, they make GFCI switches in two form factors:

  • A GFCI 1-socket recep + a normal toggle switch
  • A GFCI deadfront whose Test and Reset buttons are the light switch (weird but effective, and yes, listed and labeled for that use).
  • 1
    I agree 100%. Unfortunately, my shop lights require outlets...which require GFCI protection. Maybe, at some point, I'll get lights that can be hard wired and run some MC cable, but not today.
    – tnknepp
    Nov 15, 2020 at 0:25

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