Electrical Wiring in the Home/Switch to plug


Older home with aluminum wiring. We have changed out all our plugs and switches in this home, everything is working fine.  However I just went through all the plugs to double check and seem to be getting error messages in the plugs that run from the switches and turn on lamps.  i believe I connected correctly but can I double check with you?  So aluminum switch/plug to start with...  Tried to just connect as usual, with blacks going on right side, white going on left side and ground.  Doing it this way doesn't work , so i snap the right side , and it works the switch to the plug.  However I am getting and Open hot message on top plug and bottom is testing okay.  Is this correct?  Would this pass inspection?

Must have done something wrong

Side is irrelevant, hot to brass screw, neutral to chrome.
Are these new devices listed as copper/aluminum? You can't just install copper only devices to aluminum wire.

Don't understand why you "snapped" the device - I guess you mean you removed the bridge between the two screw terminals. Was the old device bridge removed?

How many cables are at switch? [Cable is sheathed group of conductors - black is a single conductor, white and black inside outer covering is a cable]

How many at receptacle?

Did you change any connections?
About Electrical Wiring in the Home
This site answers questions related to home electrical wiring, home wiring, general electrical help,and other electrical questions related to aleternating current (AC). You can find help on the National Electical Code, home electrical issues, wiring electrical outlets, installing lighting, electrical grounding, and general electrical help for do-it-yourself projects not require an electrician. If you do not see your home electrical wiring question answered in this area then please ask your electrical wiring question here

Electrical Wiring in the Home

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Robert Wilber


Licensed Philadelphia electrician serving Delaware, Chester, Montgomery and Philadelphia County in Pennsylvania. I install and repair residential, commercial and industrial wiring and lighting. Troubleshooting and repair of problems that stump other people is my favorite. I am willing to help people figure out why things don`t work. I understand motor controls, transformers and machine wiring. I do not teach basics to novices or do free design work.


Experience in the area I have 44 years experience in residential, commercial and industrial electrical construction and repair, 480 volts and below. This is not to be confused with one week repeated two thousand times.

44 years experience in residential, commercial and industrial electrical construction and repair

©2017 About.com. All rights reserved.

[an error occurred while processing this directive]