How to Jump a Light Switch

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Jumping a light switch is a simple process.

Light switches and light fittings in your home are wired using a method known as parallel wiring. This means each light switch and light bulb is independent of each other. Light switches are wired using live electrical wires rather than neutral wires. This ensures that when the switch is turned off, the live flow of electricity doesn't get to the light bulb. So if you accidentally touch a "hot" terminal while replacing a light bulb, you don't get an electric shock. If you no longer need the light switch, you can jump its wires in a few steps.


Step 1

Open your trip switch box cover. This is where all the circuits in your house connect. If a fault occurs, the affected trip switch turns off.

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Step 2

Locate the trip switch for the light circuit connected to the switch you want to jump. Turn off the switch so the electricity is cut off to the switch. Each trip is clearly labeled.


Step 3

Unscrew the light switch fitting using a screwdriver. Pull the cover off so you can access the terminals.

Step 4

Loosen the screws on the terminals labeled "In" and "Com." Don't loosen the screw on the terminal labeled "Out." The wires colors on the two terminals are likely to be red, orange or black, but never green, gray or white.


Step 5

Slide the wire out from the terminal labeled "In." Insert the wire into the terminal labeled "Com." Tighten the screw.

Step 6

Replace the light fitting cover and tighten it using a screwdriver. Turn the trip switch to the "On" position. Close the box cover. Try turning the switch you've jumped to the "on" and "off" position. The light should not operate because you have jumped the wire.


These instructions are intended for a single pole light switch, such as a switch that operates a single light. Double and treble pole light switches are more complex. Unless you are a trained electrician, get a professional to jump the switch for you.



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