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OK - I replaced the switch with my motion sensor outlet. It looks like it's working fine. However, I am going to replace the other light switch just to keep the colors consistent. I pull off the switch and found a black wire connected to each terminal (go figure, huh). Well, I'm putting the wires on the new switch in the same places. The new switch has two terminals on each side, a screw for the ground (there's no ground in the box) and a screw labelled Common. What the heck is the common for?

Leviathan
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The new switch has two terminals on each side, a screw for the ground (there's no ground in the box) and a screw labelled Common. What the heck is the common for?

Did you buy a 3-way switch instead of a 2-way? If you paid more than 25 cents for it, then you did. That "Common" is to allow two switches to work together e.g. a switch at each end of a long hallway, etc. Nothing wrong with using a 3-way switch in a 2-way application, although you paid triple the price you needed. However, I'm not sure if an extra 60 cents is worth the hassle of returning the 3-way for a 2-way and wiring it in.

-Agg97
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Holy Schnikies! I'm over 500 posts! I just noticed that tonight. Yay, me.

-Agg97
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Did you buy a 3-way switch instead of a 2-way? If you paid more than 25 cents for it, then you did. That "Common" is to allow two switches to work together e.g. a switch at each end of a long hallway, etc. Nothing wrong with using a 3-way switch in a 2-way application, although you paid triple the price you needed. However, I'm not sure if an extra 60 cents is worth the hassle of returning the 3-way for a 2-way and wiring it in.

Yeah, in hindsight, I did buy a 3-way. Oops.

Leviathan
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