I want a motorized appliance switch that turns on only when I am depressing a button then turns off when I let go.

I know about air switches I do not want those as they do not go in an electrical box.

Are there any switches that fit in an existing electrical box next to a light switch that do this?

Are there any parts that I can put together to make something like this?

  • This is called a "momentary contact" switch. They are quite common in electronics. Key question: Do you need to control 120V or 240V AC? Or can you use low voltage (e.g., 12V) LEDs? Because if you can do this in low voltage it becomes a heck of a lot easier. Dec 4 '20 at 18:25
  • I am 120v. I am trying to run my disposal.
    – Whitecat
    Dec 4 '20 at 18:30
  • 1
    You know, this makes a lot of sense, since you don't need to run a disposal for more than a few seconds at a time. Dec 4 '20 at 18:35
  • Allen Bradley has momentary contact block switches that are used in industrial equipment, you will need a round hole ~30mm faceplate to mount it to catalog 800-a1 and you would need the contact block similar to an 800t-XA 10 amp, I would try to find one on e-bay or get ready for sticker shock
    – Ed Beal
    Dec 4 '20 at 18:42
  • 2
    @EdBeal The Leviton switches are $15 - $30. Not the usual $2 - $3 as a standard switch, but not a fortune and fit standard boxes & cover plates (regular or Decora). Dec 4 '20 at 18:45

There are certainly switches available, like this Leviton:

Leviton 5655-2T Momentary Contact

or if you don't like Decora style, here is another one suggested by @Alaska Man also from Leviton:

Leviton 1256-W

The key phrase is momentary contact. Make sure you get something properly designed for 120V use. There are tons of switches from Digikey and similar places for use in building electronic stuff. But for a disposal you need something UL-listed (or equivalent).

Make sure the switch can handle the disposal. Lights are easy on a switch (especially with today's low-power LEDs). Motors like disposals are not. These two examples are rated for up 1/2 HP @ 120V, which is enough for a standard (in my area) Badger 5 but not for some bigger models.


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