Question about Leviton Decora Light Dimmer Switch

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I want to replace my levitron dimmer switch with a new one, the wires are pushed in not turned around a screw. How do I release the wires from the old switch? Thanks Tom

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  • tjames48 Jan 16, 2009

    thank you, this switch had pigtails solder on and no slot.




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There should be a small hole on the back of the switch, place a brad all or a pointy tool in the hole and pull out the wire at the same time.

Posted on Jan 25, 2009

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Tom the most important step is to shut off the breaker which controls this dimmer switch. Dimmer switches are sensitive and should never be worked on with out killing the power.

that being said, simply take a tiny flat blade screwdriver which will slide into the hole next to the wire and put some pressure on it. You can then easily remove the wires. good luck

Posted on Jan 19, 2009

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Some switches have a small area where you can insert a pin, or small screw driver that prsees down on the metal holding the wires and releasing them. Others do not have that and the wire must be cut and stripped.

Posted on Jan 16, 2009

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There should be a slot over or under where the wire is pushed in. try taking a toothpick or something of that sorts and insert it into that slot. the wire should then release.

Posted on Jan 16, 2009

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1 Answer

I need to know how to wire a Levitron dimmer switch in replacement of a regular light switch.

Don't use on LED or CFL unless they are rated for dimmer switch. Didn't switch come with directions? Picture looks like it might be for a three way application.

May 27, 2015 | Electrical Supplies

2 Answers

How do you wire a touch dimmer


1. Turn the power off to the switch at the breaker box (turn the light on, and flip the breakers until the light goes off to identify he breaker, if need be)
2. take the plastic plate cover off the existing switch,
3. Unscrew the two screws holding the old switch in, and gently pull the switch out
4. Clip the wires off the old switch,
5. Remove the insulation from the wires about 1/2 inch with a razor knife or suitable tool,
6. If the new dimmer switch has wires protruding out, connect them black to black and white to white to the wires in the box with yellow wire-nuts (or whatever color wire-nuts that might be included with the new switch),
7. If the new switch only has screws on it, and not wires protruding out, connect the white wire to the silver screw (marked :"Com" or "Common") and the black wire to the gold-colored screw (marked "Load"). Make sure to wrap the wire around the screw, so even if it were to loosen it will not fall off the screw. Wrap the wire so the end goes around in a clock-wise manner. Squeeze it around the screw with a needle-nose pliers, and then tighten it quite firmly (be very careful, this is where you will likely stab yourself in the hand with the screwdriver!)
8. The bare wire that is left (or should be) goes in between the plates (do not bend this wire to put it in, it just stabs straight in) of the GREEN screw (marked "GRD" or Ground). You might have to open it a bit by unscrewing the green screw a little, as to make it accept the bare ground wire, Tighten it firmly, too.
9. Gently push the switch into the box, moving any wires you need to out of the way to make it fit, and screw the top and bottom screws into the box
10. Put the cover over the switch, turn the breaker on, and then spend the next hour or two just playing with the switch in amazement, because you just DID IT YOURSELF! and SAVED A HUNDRED BUCKS OR SO!!!


(Home Depot has a video on the subject here: More or less the same instructions. Have fun!)

Jul 20, 2014 | One Touch Electrical Supplies

1 Answer

Need to change dimmer switch in my 1999 gmc safari

The headlight dimmer not the dash dimmer? If so here are the instructions
  • 1Remove the steering wheel shroud, using a Phillips-head screwdriver.
  • 2Locate the two screws holding in the multiswitch. Take these screws out with the Phillips-head screwdriver. You may have to adjust the tilt on the steering wheel to access the screws.

    • 3Pull the switch out slowly by hand. This will expose the wiring harness that is attached to the switch. Separate the wires from the harness by prying the tab up with your fingers and pulling them apart. There will be one large harness and two smaller harnesses to detach.
    • 4Separate the switch from the steering console by pulling it out with your hands. Pull slowly to prevent the switch from catching on other components.
    • 5Attach the wires to the new switch. The new wires should be spliced to fit your vehicle schematics. Simply push the wires into the appropriate harness. They will click when they are seated correctly.
    • 6Position the switch to the steering column. Start the screws to ensure it fits correctly.
    • 7Tighten the screws with the screwdriver.
    • 8Turn the ignition key in your Safari to the "Run" position, but do not crank the vehicle. Test the switch to ensure the turn signals are working correctly. Test the windshield wipers as well as the dimmer switch.
    • 9Tighten the steering shroud back around the steering console, using the screwdriver.

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    1 Answer

    I have a 3 gang box in my kitchen on switch is a double switch for the kitchen , one is for the outside flood light and the other is to the garage lights. I need to replace the garage light switch beacuse...

    Your switch has 2 wires, and 2 brass screws, and new switch will have same.
    Connect either wire to new switch.
    Connect bare ground wire to green screw.
    Turn power off, remove screws that hold switch into box, pull out switch, take photo of wiring, install new switch.
    If wires are pushed into back of switch, then use small screwdriver and push into slot to release wire.

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    We have a Leviton switch, #15A - how do you release the old wire from the old switch? There are 2 holes in the new switch, my husband thinks one releases the wire?

    There are 2 holes in the back of the old switch,either take a piece of #14 gauge solid copper wire and press it into the hole to release the wires or just clip them close to the switch and then restrip the wire to the length indicated in the moulding on the back of the new switch.This tells you how long to strip the wire.After doing this loop halfway the solid copper wire with a pair of needle nose pliers and insert it around the screw clockwise,so that it turns with the screw and tightens the loop.MAKE SURE the copper on the black(hot) wire is not exposed beyond the loop,it has to only be around the screw.It's always a good practice whether your pushing the switch into a plastic or metal box,single lead or multiple incoming wires.For metal boxes I always wrap black tape on the brass(hot) screws.

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    1 Answer

    I have installed a 2-way dimmer switch in my dining room. I was able to install it and it works great. However, on the other side of the wall where I installed the switch, I have another single way...

    If I understand correctly new dimmer is in different box than outdoor switch.
    And outdoor switch controls different light than new dimmer.
    Both new dimmer and outdoor light are on same circuit breaker, and that breaker is not tripped.

    Outdoor problem could be related if loose wire inside dimmer box also feeds over to outdoor switch. More below.
    Here's how I would troubleshoot problem.
    1) Check outdoor bulb(s). This step can be big time saver.

    2) Pull outdoor switch out of box a bit so you can see and test wires.

    3) If wires are pushed into quick connects located on back of switch, these connects get loose. Moving switch usually causes loose wire to connect again, so turn switch ON-OFF and see if outdoor lights work. Sometimes switch works fine after quick connects reconnect. If quick connects are bad, use tiny screwdriver in slot next to connect-hole to release wire. And then connect wire to screw terminals on switch. Or replace switch.

    4) Turn switch to OFF, use tester and test both screws on switch to bare ground wire. Tester should light up on one screw. If tester does not light up, then switch is not getting power, and that wire has to be tracked back to see where short is.

    a) Look if one of the black switch wires is connected to other switch, or connected to other black wires inside same box. This wire might have come loose.
    b) Look at white wire inside same box and make sure they are twisted together and covered with wire nut.

    c) Now here is where dimmer could be related ... if white wires are joined together in dimmer box, they could have come loose if they were not properly twisted together and covered with wire nut.

    5) Turn switch to ON and test again. Tester should light up on both screws. If switch does not light up on both screws, then switch is bad. Replace switch.

    Add a comment if you need more help.

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    Make sure the power is off.
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    How do i replace a standard light switch with a dimmer?

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    I'm not sure if this is going to work in your case, but I'm pretty sure it will...

    Green to ground (probably bare)
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    That should fixya!

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