Due to the expediency of its function and design, light switches tend to last forever despite being used every day. Certainly, many of us hardly notice this modest, hardworking electrical component; however, there will be times where you may have to replace them.

Nonetheless, as long as you follow basic electrical safety precautions, you can easily replace a light switch by your own, saving the stress and money needed to hire a professional electrician. Odds are, your toolbox may already have the essential tools needed aside from the new switch, and you’ll only need an hour to finish this project.

Below are steps from Jaycox Industries on how to replace your light switch.

  • First, turn off the power feeding the switch. You can do this in your electrical service panel and by either turning off the circuit breaker or removing the fuse.
  • Go to your light switch and turn on the switch to check if power has been turned off.
  • Using a flathead screwdriver, remove the switch cover and then using a Phillips screwdriver, gently take out the existing switch from the box making sure not to snap the old wiring.
  • Loosen the screws that are holding the wire on the switch side using a screwdriver and then remove the wires from the switch. It’s important to remember the colors of the wire and their exact location on the old switch because you will be copying their exact placement on the new switch. Since you will be working on small space, it is helpful if you use needle nose pliers as you work. Make sure that the wires are separated by bending and directing them on the opposite corners. Another thing to remember is that if the switch is grounded, you have to take away the grounding wire last.
  • Start to connect the cores to the appropriate terminals of your new switch and tighten up the screws. Make sure to check if the cable cores are clamped firmly by slightly pulling the wires. Run a length of brown PVC sleeving on the blue core (black core for wirings with an old color scheme) if there is none, to indicate that it’s live.
  • Fit green or yellow PVC sleeving on the bare earth core of the drop cable of the switch and link it with the grounding terminal of the box. If you are utilizing a metal switch, it is important that you ground the switch faceplate.
  • Make sure that each connection is properly secured, then shove the cable back to the mounting box and put the faceplate.

This is a tip to help you from hiring an Victoria BC electrician. But always be cautious when doing electrical work on your own.