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Okay to leap the impartial wire from one change to a different in the identical field?

I’ve a double-gang mild change field that’s fairly cramped, and is the place an enormous wad of neutrals for all the main bedroom is tied along with the most important wire nut I’ve ever seen.

One change already has a impartial run to it from that wire-nutted bundle (zwave).

I now wish to convert the second change in that field to zwave. The present change doesn’t want a impartial, however the brand new one will.

Can I run a brief piece of wire from the present change to a second change for impartial? Or do I’ve to get impartial from the wire nut bundle? I do know it’s going to work both method, however want to persist with code, or a minimum of usually accepted practices. I’m within the Los Angeles space, if that issues.

Edit in response to feedback: the zwave switches have holes within the again to insert wires, however with a screw on the aspect that clamps the inserted wires in place. Not screw terminals nor friction push model. I don’t know what they’re known as, however I like ‘em. There’s an additional gap out there for impartial on the present change. [Here’s a pic of the switch](

Edit 2: You guys are superior! Actually admire it.

Comments ( 23 )

  1. You are correct to be concerned about messing with a giant wire nut with a bunch of wires, those can be nasty to add another pigtail to.

    It’s unlikely that the existing switch will have two screws for the neutral like a standard receptacle would, and connecting two 14 or 12ga solid wires to one screw is not recommended. I believe the right way is to use another wire nut that sends a pigtail to each switch.

    Are you concerned about running out of space in the box?

  2. Maybe a picture of the available terminals will help. Years ago when I was looking at the NEC book a lot I often just followed the guideline of completing the project in a workmanlike manner. Receptacles often have multiple connection points to allow the kind of configuration I think you might be asking about. If you’re the homeowner, I don’t think you will get in trouble unless you burn the house down. I let my license expire a long time ago though so perhaps someone else can provide greater clarity on this.

  3. If your switch has push connections, you can run the incoming neutral to the push connector and then use the screw terminal to jump to the next switch.

  4. Not a licensed electrician. Neutrals from one box to another box should be fine. Make sure at all points in time the additive amp load is lower than your rating. Don’t mix different wire guages as a general practice because the next person working after you won’t understand why a 15A Romex line is running 20A wires or vice versa. Always try grounding. Try to take a picture. A huge wirenut sounds wrong but could work. Also make sure you’re compliant with the wire vs volume code. No junction boxes or outlets should be so cramped because it’s an electrical fire hazard.

    Sparky Channel on YouTube is my go to for understanding NEC analysis

    2023 code for electrical boxes

    2023 code for wire extensions (3 inches beyond the box)

    2020 code for cable stapling and distances (it’s mostly the sams in 2023 the last time I had to check)

    Super basics on installations

    The way you asked do you need to use neutral is concerning.

    So that we’re on the same page, in AC electrical wiring, there’s hot/live (black, red, or blue), neutral/return (white), and ground (green or bare copper). You always need a neutral to complete an AC circuit.

    Connecting from one switch to another depends on the design. Most of the time is for convenience only. You’re connecting in parallel, so each parallel load (each having a power using device or disconnected) is independent of the other. Some smart switches at both ends of a hallway are both connected and oppositely connected to detect orientation and on/off states of the other switch. Check your manual. For dumb outlets connected together, if you look at them closely, they’re all parallel connections so that’s why just take care of the fire hazard compliance and everything else should work out. Hope this helps.

    Note: You might want to think about adding AFCI and GFCI protections, if you don’t already have, to be safe for new installations.

  5. Most common practice is to remove the small line from the existing switch, then pigtail it to two new short lines connecting to each switch, using a normal size wirenut.

  6. As long as the switch has another screw/terminal you can use and you won’t be doubling up wire on one connection, then yes, absolutely.

    Just make sure you’re still within the limits of your local electrical code for the amount of wire inside the box. There are specific limits as to how many wires/devices/wire nuts inside of a box of X cubic inches. If you’re above that, you’re not to code and need to put in a bigger box or eliminate some things.

  7. If the wire nut is annoying and keeps coming undone, you can replace it with a wago lever nut.

    Here’s an example pack:

  8. Not an answer to your question, but in yor pic of the switch, one of the wire terminals is labelled “Traveller”. Never head of that, anyone know what it’s for?

  9. Did they run all of the lights’ neutrals back to that switch? Typically, you’d run the switch to the first light in the run and then from light to light.

    Having a hard time imagining what some genius was thinking using a (likely) blue wire nut in a residential light switch.

    When you put your wire in, it’s very important you twist it in tightly with the others and then do a pull out test after the wire nut is back on to make sure none of the wires will be able to work loose over time.

  10. Electrical code varies, no idea if it’s truly ‘against code’. Generally the expectation is to use a pigtail (one wire from that wire nut bundle) to connect each device and not daisy chain even though it’s physically possible. I don’t think I’ve ever ran into an install by a professional that wasn’t a pigtail setup. Daisy chaining ‘works’ but it can be a pain in the ass later to change devices or troubleshoot problems.

    My suggestion would be to pull the wire nut and replace it with a lever nut (common brand name Wago). It’s much cleaner and easier to deal with later to add/remove connections vs the wire nut. They’re definitely catching on and starting to be used in place of wire nuts even by some old sparkies. Any time I touch an outlet/switch I replace wire nuts with them now.

    I do a lot of z-wave switches and they pretty much all connect the same way, the backstab + clamping terminal is better than pretty much any other connection method IMO. Old sparkies just assume it’s a crappy tension backstab, it is not. These type of switches also aren’t really made to wrap wire around the terminal as some people are suggesting, so don’t do that.

  11. First off, nobody in this thread mentioned “box fill.” Look up how to calculate box fill, it will tell you how many wires you are allowed to have in the specific size box. If you look on the box somewhere it will say what its allowed “volume” is in cubic inches. Then you assign a value to each conductor and item in the box, depending on wire gauge, and the sum of those numbers needs to be below the box volume. That’s if you want to stay in code.

  12. DO NOT do what you’re asking about. It won’t work. Those two switches need to be independent of each other.

    A switch doesn’t have a hot (black) and a neutral (white) wire like an outlet would. It may use one black and one white wire, but that’s only because those are the colors available in standard Romex. Technically both wires are treated as black because the switch is simply opening and closing the circuit (usually on the hot side) going to the light fixture.

  13. The zwave switch probably has the screws with plates that you can put 2 wires under, one on each side. There will even be 2 holes in the back you put the wires into to clamp them with the screw plate. I’ve only seen Zwave switches with that, or with pigtails and you didn’t mention it having pigtails. So, do that on the existing switch to connect 2 wires to it and then run the jumper to the new switch.

  14. This thread is a dumpster fire of advice you shouldn’t be taking. Coming from a journeyman electrician some of this advice is correct, some of its fine, some of it is clearly from some dumbass that’s watched a few YouTube videos and thinks they’re now an authority.

  15. Those switches are meant for the second hole to be a “jumper” hole.

    I don’t love it, as an engineer, and code would probably frown on it, but at the same time… It’s likely fine.

  16. You can share a neutral if you confirm that it’s from the same circuit.

    Stealing a neutral from another circuit can be troublesome and dangerous if you don’t know what you’re doing. The other method is taking a neutral from another circuit that’s on a different phase. If you take it from a circuit on the same phase then you risk overloading your neutral wire and causing an electrical fire that won’t trip your overload protection (breakers/fuses).

    Then the other risk of stealing a neutral from another circuit is shock/electrocution. When you turn one circuit off, the neutral can still carry a load through the circuit it shares the neutral with.

    Residential electrical is simple enough, but you have to know what you’re doing, so you don’t cause harm to your family or the people that have to work on it after you. Verify your circuit with a multimeter, and if you’re not sure then hire an electrician.

  17. Electricity is what ever you want it to be man.

  18. You need to sit down and figure out the circuits in the box, where they go, and what they do. Neutral isn’t neutral off a switch, or maybe it is. If you assume that the person who did that box knew what they were doing, you are putting your life, or someone else’s life in a strangers hands. It already seems a little suspicious with a giant wire nut, but it could be reasonable.

  19. The only time it’s not permitted is when you have a multi-wire branch circuit.

    [And then sometimes, only when it’s the portion containing more than one hot conductor](,compress&fit=fill&fill=blur&w=1200&h=630)

    NEC 300.13 B

    300.13 **Mechanical and Electrical Continuity— Conductors**.
    (B) **Device Removal**. In multiwire branch circuits, the
    continuity of a grounded conductor shall not depend on
    device connections such as lampholders, receptacles, and so
    forth, where the removal of such devices would interrupt the

    This is because when a neutral is disconnected you’ve lost the neutral connection back to the panel, and can have 240v between anything on either circuit. It’s a good way to get injured, killed, at the very least let the magic smoke out of anything connected to either circuit downstream

  20. #Make sure it’s from the same circuit!

    Some gang boxes can have wiring from separate circuits. If there is only 1 incoming line to the box then it’s fine.

    The box is probably overfilled as well. Consider converting it to a bigger one. I’m guess that if you are asking this then you are not comfortable with doing that.

    Smart switches take up lots of space, often too much space.

  21. I personally wouldn’t jumper then unless you know they’re all from the same homerun or circuit. If you end up jumping the neutral and leaving the neutral for another circuit open, then you could possibly be doubling up on current on neutrals.

    I would do some investigation, and find where and what each run is doing before just tossing it in. You would be surprised how much you can fit in a box if you’re neat and tidy with it. Just make sure to document your progress

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