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How to wire a two-gang, two-way light switch

Updated February 21, 2017

A two-gang, two-way light switch sounds complicated, but it's actually the very common two-switch light fixture you're probably used to seeing in your home. "Two-way" means that the switch has two positions, on and off, and "two-gang" means that two switches are packaged together. Typically, these switches will be used to operate two separate lights, with power coming from a common source wire.

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Turn off the power going to the circuit you'll be working on at the circuit breaker. Never work on a live electrical circuit.

Remove 1/3 cm (3/8 inch) of insulation from the end of the white wire leading to the switch from the breaker. Loosen the screw at the bottom back of the switch with a screwdriver and slide the bare end of the wire underneath it. Tighten the screw with the screwdriver.

Remove 1/3 cm (3/8 inch) of insulation from the ends of the white wires leading to the lights you'll be connecting. Loosen the screws on back of the switch corresponding to each switch with a screwdriver and slide the bare ends of the wires underneath them--one wire per switch. Tighten the screws with the screwdriver.

Remove 1/3cm (3/8 inch) of insulation from the end of the black wire leading from the breaker. Remove 1/3 (3/8 inch) of insulation from the ends of each of the black wires leading from the lights. Slide the ends of these three wires into a wire nut and twist clockwise until the wires are firmly held together with no bare wire showing.

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Things You'll Need

  • Wire strippers
  • Screwdriver
  • Wire nuts

About the Author

Based in Virginia, Nichole Liandi has been a freelance writer since 2005. Her articles have appeared on various print and online publications. Liandi has traveled extensively in Europe and East Asia and incorporates her experiences into her articles. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in history from West Virginia University.

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