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I have a light switch that controls the top half and bottom half of a nearby receptacle. How do I disconnect this switch and make both halves of the receptacle permanently hot? There are other receptacles on the same circuit located to the left and right of my switched receptacle. The light switch and receptacle are wired as shown:

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I am installing recessed lights and want to run that circuit to this switch location and replace the switch with a dimmer to control the recessed lights.

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The 2 black wires are piggy-backed, indicating that one is the incoming hot and the other is the hot to other device(s). The red appears to be the switched hot supplying the receptacle in question, so...

Turn off the power at the circuit breaker/fuse panel first! Then disconnect all the wires from the switch and connect them together with an appropriately sized twist-on wire connector, except for the ground, which simply terminates at the box. The red wire supplying current to the receptacle will now be an un-switched hot.

  • Turn off the power at the circuit breaker/fuse panel first! – Jimmy Fix-it Nov 27 '15 at 15:57
  • And then when you install the new switch "pigtail" off these same hot wires for your power. – ojait Nov 27 '15 at 16:03
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    @Joe Philllips, the switch pictured has 3 wires connected to it. 2 (black) are piggy-backed, indicating that one is the incoming hot and the other is hot to other device(s). The red appears to be the switched hot supplying the receptacle in question, so... yes connect all three together. What specifically is your concern or question with this? – Jimmy Fix-it Nov 27 '15 at 18:21
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    +1 I think you might add the explanation you gave Joe Phillips to the answer to make it clearer to subsequent readers. – bib Nov 27 '15 at 23:30
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    @bib thanks, you are right and I have added the brief explanation to the answer. – Jimmy Fix-it Nov 27 '15 at 23:34
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I am installing recessed lights and want to run that circuit to this switch location and replace the switch with a dimmer to control the recessed lights.

What you need to do is create a parallel circuit.

As always, turn off the circuit breaker for that switch before any changes!

For the outlet to be a permanently on, non-switch circuit, you need to bypass the switch. As @JimmyFix-It has said, you need to tie the Red wire and the Black Wires (Live) together. That Red wire goes to the Outlets. The White wire provides the Neutral return from the outlet.

For the recessed lights you are installing, you will need to connect the Black Wires (Live) to the Switch, and run a new wire (In most home electrical code it should be Red) to the ceiling for the new recessed lights. The return Neutral wire from the lights will need to be tied to the existing White wires in the Switch box. Appropriately sized Wire Nuts/Twist Caps should be used.

schematic

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The other answer will work but this is easier and the right way. In your outlet box there is 2 black wires in wire nut, this is your constant hot going to other outlets.

Remove red wire from outlet Remove wire nut from black wires and connect to outlet were red wire was and other black wire above it. Red wire going to switch is not needed now. Cap at both ends or snip wire on both ends.

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