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I am replacing a two receptacle outlet in a hallway with a newer Leviton outlet-guidelight combination. I noticed that the outlet box has two wires coming in, both with one hot/one neutral. The new device I'm installing only takes one wire. As it is now in the picture below, I do not get current from the receptacle when the breaker is switched on. This is true for the other outlets on the circuit. Is it possible to wire the device so that it only uses the one wire?

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The old receptacle connected the wires together internally, so you'll have to do it external to the device now.

Using a twist-on wire connector (or similar), connect both the whites together with a short piece of scrap wire of the same color and size. Then connect the other end of the scrap piece of wire, to the silver "neutral" terminal on the new device.

This is known as a "pigtail", and is a common method for joining multiple wires to a single terminal.

Do the same with the black ("hot") wires, connecting the pigtail to the brass colored screw terminal on the device.

Finally follow the same procedure with the grounding conductors, attaching the pigtail to the green screw terminal.

  • Also, the push in wire connectors (such as the Ideal "In-Sure") make it even easier and cleaner. I've found that these devices have fewer problems than wire-nuts. (I've seen a lot of incidents where a wire came loose out of a wire-nut because it wasn't properly installed.) – Maxfield Solar Jan 28 '16 at 12:01
  • @MaxfieldSolar I would trust them more than an improperly installed wire nut, but I trust a properly installed wire nut more. It's easy to properly use a wire nut; just make sure all of the ends of solid wire line up, and any stranded wires extend slightly further. I do use the push in wire connectors that come with lights, because with such a small load it doesn't matter as much. – Brad Gilbert Jan 30 '16 at 18:39

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