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I need some help. I want to replace the 2 old switches, fan + light, by 2 Leviton decora 1 way switches. I am confused by the wires (see attached pics), especially by the black one that goes from one switch to the other, like a loop. Also I do not see any green/ground wire. The Leviton switch has a spot for that, I guess I should use. How to connect the wires properly? Please help. Thanks in advance for a reply. enter image description here enter image description here

  • Thanks a lot for the answer. I did what was recommended, but now some of the outlets and the dressing switch in the bedroom are not working anymore. I suspect it's because of the bare wires I found in that electrical box. There are 3. I do not know which one to connect to the 2 new switches (fan + light). Can you help? – RD23 Dec 21 '14 at 17:51
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The wire that "loops" between the two switches is the hot wire from the power source. This is the same as having a single wire with 2 pig tails that connect to each switch. Since you're replacing two single-pole single-throw (SPST) switches with two of the same types, all you need to do is replace them with the exact same wiring that currently exists. There is no hot/neutral to these switches, so as long as you connect to the two screws on each switch, you will be OK.

For the ground, in the pictures you can see the bare ground wires (with some paint on them) with a wire nut at the very back of the electrical box. You can and add in two pig-tails in order to connect to your new switches ground terminals. In your particular case, since you have a plastic electrical box, you should definitely connect this wire. If your box was metal, then the switch would be grounded just by making contact with the electrical box (assuming the box were grounded).

  • Thanks a lot for the answer. I did what was recommended, but now some of the outlets and the dressing switch in the bedroom are not working anymore. I suspect it's because of the bare wires I found in that electrical box. There are 3. I do not know which one to connect to the 2 new switches (fan + light). Can you help? – RD23 Dec 22 '14 at 19:47
  • All bare wires should be connected together but this would not impact the operation of downstream circuits. You either miswired the hot or neutral wires. – Steven Dec 23 '14 at 14:36

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