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Replacing Bathroom Pullcord Switch - Wiring help!
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# 1
jonny2510
Old 25-09-2008, 2:36 PM
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Lightbulb Replacing Bathroom Pullcord Switch - Wiring help!

Can anyone confirm that what I've done in trying to replace the pull switch in my bathroom is Ok?

The pull switch in the bathroom had started to only sometimes work, so I bought a replacement 1/2 way switch from B&Q.

When I took the cover off the old switch (after flicking the stopper for the lights circuit first of course) there were three wires.
  • A green and yellow wire going to a point on the rim of the ceiling mount fixture of the switch
  • A red wire screwed in to a point marked "COM"
  • A black wire (with a red sleeve) screwed to "L1"
  • There was also an L2 with nothing screwed into it
The instructions for the new light stated for a 1 way switch with 3 wires:
  • one wire should go to a simalar point near the rim of the fitting (which I attached the green and yellow to, as it was before),
  • one wire to COM (which I attached the red one to, as it was before), and
  • one wire to L2 (which I attached the black with red sleeve to).
  • I left L1 empty - as per the diagram
It all seems to work fine, but I was just wondering if I should have it attached to L1 as it previously was, if I should follow the manufacturers instructions, or if in deed there is any difference between the two?

If there is a difference, what is it, and do I need to change anything?

Additionally the diagram showed the earth and L2 wires coming through one gap (from the ceiling through the top of the ceiling mount fitting) and the COM wire coming through another gap on its own.

Due to the short lengths of wire available to work with (out of the ceiling) I had to feed the earth and COM wire through the same gap (in the ceiling mount fitting), and the L2 through the other on it's own. I'm assuming this is Ok (as the wiring runs all through the house next to all the other wires)?

Any advice to put my mind at rest is greatley appreciated
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# 2
madjay
Old 25-09-2008, 3:00 PM
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With a pull cord as long as one cabe is connected to COM and the other is connected L1 or L2 and and the earth cable does not go into any of these terminals it going to work
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# 3
latecomer
Old 25-09-2008, 3:01 PM
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I would always follow the manufacturers instructions, and it sounds to me like you've done it right (although note I'm a DIYer not an electrician)
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# 4
madjay
Old 25-09-2008, 3:06 PM
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I am an electrician and you can connect COM and L1 or COM and L2 in a pullcord it does not make and difference it does the same job on/off/on/off but it makes a difference in switches because you will connect the switch upside down.
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# 5
jonny2510
Old 25-09-2008, 3:18 PM
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Thanks for the replies. My mind is now at ease

Just a side thought - Under what circumstances would you need a two way switch (using both L1 and L2)? Why would you have 4 wires?

Last edited by jonny2510; 25-09-2008 at 3:27 PM.
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# 6
Mutton Geoff
Old 25-09-2008, 3:30 PM
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As mentioned already, you don't need to worry, either L1 or L2 is fine as the switch is simply a "toggle". If you wired a wall switch up the wrong way the only thing would be the up/down on/off would be reversed (simply turn the switch 180 degrees to fix).

The two way switch is for landing light situations where two switches control the same light. In olden days people often had a pull cord above the bed so they could switch the bedroom light out without getting out of the bed.
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# 7
27col
Old 25-09-2008, 10:49 PM
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As a retired electrician all my bedrooms have two way circuits, which include a pull switch over the bed. Not so much of the olden days. Actually, now I think of it, I built the house in 1977, so I suppose that to some people it was the olden days.
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# 8
alared
Old 01-07-2009, 2:55 PM
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Sorry to drag up an old thread but if someone could help I`d appreciate it.

The old bathroom pullcord switch is a one way 5amp with an earth wire and two reds.
I`ve just bought a 6amp TWO WAY with earth,L1,L2 and com.

How do I wire it up please or do I need a one way?
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# 9
27col
Old 01-07-2009, 3:38 PM
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Connect one red to COM and the other red to either L1 or L2 and it will work fine. The answer was already on post 4 and others.
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# 10
alared
Old 01-07-2009, 3:41 PM
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27col
I did read post4 but it was the "one way","two way" switch that confused me.
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# 11
jonesjw
Old 01-07-2009, 10:33 PM
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My pull switch worked fine after I unscrewed the top & applied WD40 to the mechanism.
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# 12
seaniesean
Old 22-07-2010, 4:08 PM
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Default Same problem

Hi, hope this thread is still active.

I am trying to fit a new pull string light switch in the bathroom and have a similar problem. I have two black wires and two red, the old fitting had the red ones going to two screws and the black were twisted together and fitted to one, there were no markings on the old fitting..
My new fitting has three screws, one way, two way and com. I tried putting the red wires into 1-2 way and the two black into com and the fuse blew, I have also tried the two black in com and the two red just in 1 way, it blew again. Does anyone have any ideas?
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# 13
KillerWatt
Old 22-07-2010, 4:18 PM
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Put the two blacks in a bit of choccy block (terminal block) so that they are connected together.

Connect one of the reds to COM
Connect the other red to either L1 or L2 (that's the "one way" option as you describe it).
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# 14
ormus
Old 22-07-2010, 6:58 PM
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the above is correct. the two blacks together.
one red in com, and one red in L1.
leave L2 spare.
Get some gorm.
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# 15
Chelseadons
Old 26-07-2010, 11:58 AM
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Another simple question I think. I am also replacing a bathroom pullcord which also turns on and off extractor fan with the the light.

The old pull cord had two cables entering it with unfortuately 4 red sheaths and two earths. The pull cord unit had two terminals marked IN, which took a red wire from each cable and there were two other unmarked terminals also taking a red wire from each cable. I have bought a new single switch pull cord which only has two terminals one marked com and the other 1 way.

My questions 1 Have i got the right light pull ?
2 Why are both cables having two red wires and an
earth. Is this correct or was the installer lazy ?
3 Where are the 2 cables coming from ?
4 Most importantly, if I've got the right light pull how
should it be wired ?

Regards Chelseadons
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# 16
muckybutt
Old 26-07-2010, 7:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chelseadons View Post
Another simple question I think. I am also replacing a bathroom pullcord which also turns on and off extractor fan with the the light.

The old pull cord had two cables entering it with unfortuately 4 red sheaths and two earths. The pull cord unit had two terminals marked IN, which took a red wire from each cable and there were two other unmarked terminals also taking a red wire from each cable. I have bought a new single switch pull cord which only has two terminals one marked com and the other 1 way.

My questions 1 Have i got the right light pull ?
2 Why are both cables having two red wires and an
earth. Is this correct or was the installer lazy ?
3 Where are the 2 cables coming from ?
4 Most importantly, if I've got the right light pull how
should it be wired ?

Regards Chelseadons
1 Yes
2 Red sheathing denotes that both wires are / could become live
3 one cable from the light fitting and the other from the fan
4 both LIVE wires into the terminal marked COM and the other two sheathed wires into L1, connect the earths into the brass earth terminal or put them together in a connector.
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# 17
Chelseadons
Old 27-07-2010, 10:43 AM
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Brilliant Mucky I'll try that this afternoon !!
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# 18
Chelseadons
Old 28-07-2010, 2:20 PM
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Thanks Mucky. It worked like a dream !!
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# 19
preecer1981
Old 27-12-2010, 10:32 PM
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Default Help - 9 cables and 5 holes !

The pull cord switch in the Bathroom was broken -

So I brought a new one and took the old one out. To my surprise I found more cables than I thought -

I have three grey cables coming down from the void above -

1) has a Black, Red and Earth
2) has Black, Red and Earth
3) has Blue, Brown and Earth

The old one had the three earths together, both reds into the same, both backs into a block (can't remeber where the brown and blue went)

On the new unit I have L1 & C and Earth ?

Any ideas on which should be wired to which ?

Thank you
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# 20
diable
Old 27-12-2010, 11:29 PM
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Looks like they used the switch as a connecting point. What cables do you have loose the brown and the blue?
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