Reversed operation of an electrical switch

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I have two switches on faceplate. But one of them operates opposite to the other. The photo shows their off position. Guest keep flipping them to get it right.
Any suggestions in making them consistent?
q reversed operation of an electrical switch, electrical, home maintenance repairs, minor home repair, Faceplate with 2 switches
Faceplate with 2 switches
  14 answers
  • Vicky English Vicky English on Oct 17, 2015
    Tools: Screwdriver, possibly flashlight. TURN OFF FUSE for this (and probably other) outlets. Remove all 4 screws visible. If you are lucky, the electrician left enough wiring and you just remove the two screws that hold in the switch you want to turn over and flip the switch over. Replace all screws in reverse order. If there is not enough wiring to flip the switch you may want to get someone who knows a "little" bit about electricity and just swap the wires that attach the switch to the wiring. (The flashlight use will become obvious when you turn off the fuse). It is actually quite simple.
  • Becky Miller Becky Miller on Oct 18, 2015
    I agree with Vicky English..perfect instructions and very easy to do.
  • Lauren365 Lauren365 on Oct 18, 2015
    Ugh, that is so ANNOYING! Good for you for fixing this. ;)
  • Jean Myles Jean Myles on Oct 18, 2015
    I was thinking the same as Vicky
  • Virginia R. Wallace Virginia R. Wallace on Oct 18, 2015
    Is one of them A three way switch? If not there is suppose to be the word -top- on the switch, and that is the way it goes...on top.
  • Virginia R. Wallace Virginia R. Wallace on Oct 18, 2015
    Why did my comment dissappear!
  • Virginia R. Wallace Virginia R. Wallace on Oct 18, 2015
    In the first place......find out if it's a three-way switch! I have known people who did not know they had a three-way switch.....take the cover off and see if each switch has the word TOP @ the top of the switch!
  • Vel1629730 Vel1629730 on Oct 18, 2015
    Unless you are a licensed electrician, I recommend that you consult a professional...sorting out this typle of electrical problem is not something amateurs should fool around with.
    • Kathy Ruth Kathy Ruth on Oct 19, 2015
      @Velen Nonsense! This is a simple fix--just be sure to turn off the breakers before fixing it! (Simply turn the one that isn't correct over!
  • Kerry Kerry on Oct 18, 2015
    Oh, please! Take the cover plate off, and then remove the mounting screws for both switches, then GENTLY pull them forward. A standard switch will have only two wires, plus maybe an uninsulated ground wire attached, while a 3-way switch will have three wires going to the switch, and maybe a ground. As long as you are careful to touch only the tabs at the top and bottom of teh switch, no problem. Best to turn off the breakers if you go farther. Easy way to tell is turn whatever is controlled by both switches on and then turn off whatever breakers are needed to be sure both go off. a two way switch can simply be turned over if the wires are long enough.....if you are really paranoid, wear rubber gloves.....
  • Alva Sapp Alva Sapp on Oct 18, 2015
    Possibly, they could be out of sync because one of them was turned on in one location and turned off in another. My kitchen switches get this way because I have turned on the cans at the entrance to the kitchen and turned them off in the dining room. The undercounter lights can only be operated from the kitchen entrance. This leaves them opposite of each other.
  • Charles Prock Charles Prock on Oct 19, 2015
    turn the power off and then take the cover off and unscrew one switch and then turn it over...Now they match'
  • Rus1058682 Rus1058682 on Oct 23, 2015
    Are those the ONLY switches to the room? is it a bathroom with two entrances? If they are the only switches, turn the breaker off, pull the upside down switch out and flip it over, top to bottom. If there are two entrances, thus two sets of switches, it is impossible to keep them in sync..
  • Anne Marie Anne Marie on Nov 01, 2016
    If it is ONLY controlling lights from that spot (not other switch for same light), then rotating 180 degree will solve problem. Turn off the power to avoid any potential problems, work safe. If only two screw on side of switch they point to the right side of box (up is on, off is down), if three screws, then it's two screw side to right. If there are 4 screws, two on each side, then look at writing on the metal parts that rest on drywall (looking right at paddle of the switch)
  • Joe king Joe king on Sep 22, 2017
    take everything apart. Put blacks wit's whites and use a wire nut. Then while holding all the wires cut with a pair of dikes while holding the ground. Good to go