I'm renting an apartment in a century home and in the living room there is a wall switch that controls 2 wall sconces (both that have independent knobs on them to control the lights), but it also controls two receptacles. As I run a server on one of these receptacles that needs frequent power, I don't use the wall switch at all and just use the knobs on the sconces themselves to toggle the lights. The living room doesn't get any external light from anywhere so sometimes doing so can be an annoyance.

I've been thinking about replacing the wall sconces with ones for medium base bulbs (current ones are chandelier bulbs) that don't have a independent knob/switch and picking up a Philips Hue starter pack so I can just toggle the lights with my iPhone. Would this effect my hydro costs differently at all than the current setup? Also, my wife doesn't have an iPhone so would there be a way for her to control the lights in my proposed setup? I'm familiar with using IFTTT but I don't think linking the lights with a Belkin WeMo Light Switch would work, unless I'm mistaken. Would it be possible to replace the existing wall switch with the Belkin WeMo Light Switch as the receptacles will need frequent power and I just need to control the lights?

Anyone have a similar setup or any advice?

  • 1
    Wouldn't the easiest solution be to simply plug the server in somewhere else?
    – Tester101
    Commented Oct 6, 2014 at 15:55
  • The server is connected to a modem/router via Ethernet, and the only place the modem can be is in the living room. I have cats so I try to keep the wiring as short as possible.
    – Kevin
    Commented Oct 6, 2014 at 15:58
  • Is the whole receptacle switched, or only half of it?
    – Tester101
    Commented Oct 6, 2014 at 15:59
  • @Tester101 Whole
    – Kevin
    Commented Oct 6, 2014 at 17:41

1 Answer 1


First off, I would get approval from your landlord before making any wiring changes to your apartment. You never know, he might be friendly enough that he would hire an electrician to make the changes you want.

I would first attempt to figure out how the receptacles are wired to the switch. If there is a way to separate them, then I would do that.

If not, then I would bypass the switch and just make everything permanently on. then just use your wireless bulbs and remote app. You should be able to replace the switch with the wireless switch, but make sure it works with your bulbs.

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