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How A Light Switch Works

(Last Updated On: September 4, 2018)

A light switch is an essential component used to turn any light installation on or off. There are different kinds of light switches out there to cater everyone’s needs. We have ones that merely function to be switched on or off, while we have more sophisticated ones that can control the brightness of light fixtures.

You might often ignore the importance of a light switch as you mindlessly use it every day. However, most homeowners are encouraged to learn about how such electrical switches work for them to know how to troubleshoot such electrical problems when the time comes.

There are different types of light switches in the market that can be installed in commercial and residential buildings depending on your needs. Moreover, they also come in different colours and specifications such as a toggle or a rocker. For this blog post, we will be discussing how the typical on/off light switch, 3-way light switch, and 4-way light switch work.

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On/Off Light Switch

As you might already know, an on/off light switch is a switch that basically turns lights on or off from a specific location. This specific functionality is the reason why this light switch is also called “single location switches.” If you want to be more technical, you can also call it “single throw” or “single pole.” The term ‘single pole’ indicates that just one hot wire is supposed to be connected to it. On the other hand, single throw means that it connects to just one wire after being switched on. Some homeowners opt for this type of light switch, especially when doing a fan light switch replacement as it easier to control.

Inside this light switch is a spring-loaded gate that closes when switched on. With this, the circuit then closes and power flows from the switch to light. If you then turn the switch off, the gate snaps open. This opens the circuits and interrupts the flow of current to the light fixture. If this device gets damaged over time, make sure that you engage in the electrical services of a professional light switch repair electrician.

3-Way Light Switch daylight electrician singapore

3-Way Light Switch

The 3-way light switch is considered to be a single pole, double throw switch. Just one hot wire is supposed to be connected to this switch. Additionally, this switch comes with two other wires properly connected with it. The double-throw indicates that if you switch it on, this switch alternates the hot wire connection between the two other wires called “travellers.”

These travellers are basically connected to another 3-way switch that is connected to the wire that carries the power to the light.

When inspected internally, a 3-way light switch is likely to look like ‘V’ with the pointed intersection as the terminal where the hot wire from your circuit breaker is connected. As such, this point is called “point terminal” or “the common.” This point can be easily distinguished as it has a dark screw. The two traveller wires are then connected to the two open points of the ‘V.’ These open points are then called “traveller terminals” and they usually have some kind of bright brass screws.

4-Way Light Switch daylight electrician singapore

4-Way Light Switch

A 4-way light switch is considered to be double pole, double throw switch. Double pole indicates that the switch is connected to two hot wires. These two hot wires refer to the two traveller wires found in the 3-way light switch that is connected to the power from the electrical panel. In addition, it also has the same two wires from the 3-way light switch that carries power to the light fixture. On the other hand, the double throw means if you switch the 4-way switch, connections are changed between two pairs of traveller wires.

One of two traveller wires from the 3-way light switch will eventually be hot. In case the 4-way light switch is properly set in such a way that the wire is just connected to the traveller in the second 3-way switch, then the light will be turned off.

 

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Having problems with your light switch? Don’t hesitate to call Daylight Electrician Singapore now to replace your light switch professionally. Contact us now by calling +65 6653 6261 or email us at enquiry@daylightelectrician.com to speak to our friendly customer service staff about our quality electrical works.

Daylight Electrician Singapore - #1 trusted Electrician in Singapore

Daylight Electrician Singapore provides complete electrical services including an emergency electrician service. Our EMA Licensed electrician and electrical workers are EMA/BCA/IDA certifiied and specially trained to execute all kinds of electrical repairs and works including electrical installation such as light installationceiling fan installationpower failure recovery as well as electrical wiring and rewiring. We have over 10 years of electrician experience and have done thousands of electrical works for both residential (Landed, condo and HDB electrician) and commercial electrician. We are the highly recommended electrician in Singapore with many happy customers and reviews. Call us for guaranteed transparent and honest pricing for all your electrical needs at +65 6653 6261

About Daylight Electrician Singapore

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Daylight Electrician Singapore provides complete electrical services including an emergency electrician service. Our EMA Licensed electrician and electrical workers are EMA/BCA/IDA certifiied and specially trained to execute all kinds of electrical repairs and works including electrical installation such as light installationceiling fan installationpower failure recovery as well as electrical wiring and rewiring. We have over 10 years of electrician experience and have done thousands of electrical works for both residential (Landed, condo and HDB electrician) and commercial electrician. We are the highly recommended electrician in Singapore with many happy customers and reviews. Call us for guaranteed transparent and honest pricing for all your electrical needs at +65 6653 6261

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