Ask Electrical Question
E Books

Wiring a Switched Outlet Wiring Diagram

Single Pole Switch to an Outlet

Click on Image for Larger

This entry was posted in Indoor Wiring Diagrams and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
  • Keith

    What would the circuit look like if I wanted to add another duplex recepticle so that I have 3 outlets added to the switch. Would I just run 14/2 off the 2nd outlet to the 3rd one. The reason I would want to do this is to place the duplex recepticles above kitchen cabinets and plug in the under counter lights and control all the lights from the switch

  • JM

    I’m just a DIY’er, but I was told to run the hot black to the bottom of the switch and the red from the top of the switch.

    Does it matter?

    This diagram shows the opposite.

  • JM

    Does it matter if the hot wire connects to the top or bottom of the switch? The diagram shows the opposite.

    • nikflorida

      Both the black and red wires are hot when the switch is on. If the switch is off, the circuit is broken, and not energized. If the switch is on, the circuit is completed. Thus, it makes no difference.

    • Tony_Manero

      It does matter to the extent the black/red connection align with the off/on labeling of the switch.

  • Dmancuso7

    based on the above can I then run further plugs in addition to the one additional in your drawing?

    • The Internet Electrician

      Yes you can. Connect to the black, the white, and the ground wires using pig-tail splice connections.

    • Anonymous

      You would splice in to the black, white, and the ground wires at the last receptacle.

      • ssent

        Based on the above diagram, how would I replace the single switch with a single-plate dual switch to separately control a ceiling fan (2-wire to fan, has remote for all controls)?

        • ssent

          Figured it out, I just took the white from the fan and ran it with the existing group of whites, took the black going to the old switch and connected it to the common of the new switch (leaving the tab between the 2 common connections intact), then took the red going to the old switch and connected it to one of the new switches and the black from the fan to the other switch)… was easier than I had expected.

  • Tagshinny

    There is no explanation for the colors of the wiring and a novice may not know what the red wire is for…

  • DutchGuy

    Using this diagram, with the switch in the off position, I’m still getting 60 V on the red wire and 120 V on the black wire.  Yet measuring the resistance of the switch seems to indicate the switch is fine.  With the switch turned on, both red and black show 120 V.  What can be the cause of the 60 V?

    • Tom

      It sounds like you have a “floating ground” which is a dangerous condition and needs to be fixed.  Using you DVM, check from hot to ground, hot to neutral and neutral to ground.  I am guessing you will find 60 volts from both hot to ground and neutral to ground.  You will need to get an electrician to check the wiring in the house and establish a good ground.

  • Thetexasdeb

    I’m trying to convert a ceiling outlet to a switched outlet.  Right now its source to ceiling outlet then pull chain light.
    My source right now goes to the (first) ceiling outlet that I want to convert to a switched outlet, (one side will work ok if need be), then onto the pull chain light.  How can I make the pull chain light hot like the 2nd half off the outlet or should I add a jumper off the source hot instead?

  • craig

    I have a split outlet with a wall switch and the “in” wire from the breaker has only two, (black and white romex with white and ground wires) and the “out” wiring romex has three adding a red to the mix. The switch and the receptacle both had red attached to the upper right brass screws with the black attached to the lower right brass screws. There are also no middle attached tabs. The switch started burning and smoking the other evening when left on, and this after about 20 years of being wired this way. I looked up diagrams and have found two different for this application. Which is right and btw, the other two rooms in this house have the exact wiring and the first that started burning. Are we in trouble here? I bought a new switch and installed the switch with the red “runner” wire on the bottom and the receptacle wire with the red on the top right. The black wires are on top and bottom respectively. Any help or thoughts? Craig

  • Tim

    here is my situation: goal is to add a outlet to an existing circuit that stays hot all the time (i.e. not switched controled).

    supply power comes to switch and goes back to two ceiling lights and one outlet.  I tapped into supply line and inserted one outlet upstream from switch and now the wire is too short to reach switch location, so I also inserted a junction box and extension line back to switch.  All seemed fine till I turned on breaker and now the switch does not control the previous ceiling lights it once did but now switches off lights in the next room. !!!
    this is not what I intended.  Please explain all the inputs and outputs on the actual switch so I can review if I need to switch some wires around or something?

  • John Frost

    Hi John here , I have an overhead fixture which I plug into a receptical.I want to mount a light switch above rece. and have it control the light. Also I would like this switch be a dimmer switch . Is this possible?

  • Hfh101

    In my setup I have a outlet gfi the shows the light on but no power to it I tried to trip it and that don’t work I changed it and still the same I have a switch next to it what can it be

  • Randyking1967

    I’ve got 5 sets of wires running to the box where I’m replacing a light fixture, I removed old light fixture and joined 5 black wires together and the 5 white together and it don’t work should I have all the black on blab
    Ck and white on white someone please help

  • Don

    want to put a combination switch and plug in the middle of a plug in cord and not sure what goes where. it is a 3 prong wire.
    help, thanks.

  • KB

    how do I wire split circuit outlets that are controled by two three way switches—all I can find is a single switched controled.

  • Jorge

    I am installing a ceiling fan and my switch looks hot but it won’t turn fan on. Wires in fan are hot also. What can I do

  • TLH512

    I am trying to add an outdoor GFCI with an in-use box so I can install a birdbath with pump. The access to the house is about 25feet away. I have trenched yard for conduit and prepared for project, however when I removed the outlet in the house where I wanted to add on, it had two cables running into it. So, the receptacle was full, meaning it had two whites and two blacks with grounds. How can I attach the new romex wire for power source to the GFCI? Any thoughts or ideas are much appreciated.

    • Internetelectrician

      In this situation you need to pig-tail the conductors and then bring the pigtails of the white, black, and ground wires out to the receptacle in the existing outlet. Considerations: Is the box a deep box? A standard size metal outlet box can only accommodate 5 conductors, a deep box, 7. You will have 6 now (ground wires don’t count in box fill). Plastic boxes generally have a higher box fill allowance. I have a series of videos coming out this week on the website and on YouTube (How to Wire a Switch – 2-gang, From Rough-in to Finishing) that will explain and show the practice of pig-tailing in detail.

  • Db Ben

    hello, i’m planning a project and wanted to double check my thoughts. however, your diagram seems to lack a little information. please correct me if i am wrong with the following: based on your diagram above you have 4 outlets and one switch. so is the switch controlling only outlet #1, ie upper left hand corner but the other 3 outlets are not, ie always hot? thanks.

  • Kat Sim

    So is the second one run by the switch too? I saw you said to add another switch you would splice in another black white and ground can you connect them to the top of the last switch or do they have to be joined together then connected to the switch?


The Basics of Household Wiring DVD

"If you're looking for a good reference to help you understand simple home wiring, I personally recommend 'The Basics of Household Wiring' DVD".

Terry Peterman, the Internet Electrician
Electrical Wiring
Electrical Diagrams
How To
Electrical Tools
Electrical Videos