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Replaced Light Switches With Dimmer Switches... Strange Problem!





(short description at the bottom)


My children have been asking about dimmer switches for quite a while so I thought I'd surprise them while installing them when they weren't at home. I have now done this with some success but have a strange problem.


The current wiring from the removed light switch was 3 brown cables - 2 connected to L1 and 1 was connected to L2 (the switch had L1, L2 and L3).


The dimmer switch I purchased has L1, L2 and a curvy line with an arrow going through it. I got both dimmer switches to work by connecting what was in L1 to the curvy line and what was in L2 into L2 on the new dimmer.


This works fine on both lights... HOWEVER I noticed that my bathroom light does not work. I thought I might have blown something as nothing came on in the bathroom, but then at night time when my son had his light turned low to read a book, I noticed that the bathroom light was on but very dimly. When I turned up my sons light to full, the bathroom light went up and then the fan came on too, which normally comes on when the bathroom light is on. When I pull the cord in the bathroom, it still turns the bathroom light on and off.


I was going to try and move the cables that are connect to L2 on the weird dimmer into L1 - would you advise that I do this?


Can anybody explain to me what I have done please?


Any help appreciated! Thanks.


** Short description **


Changed 2 light switched to dimmer switches. 1 now controls dimming in the bathroom, which the pull cord turns the light on or off.

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What sort of light is in the bathroom, and does the fan come on with the light,?

Fans in general do not like dimmer switches, there are some exceptions to this, but generally it's bad.

Also, some types of lamp are not generally dimmable, again, some exceptions, as above. 

Hang on,

Just re-read it,

On the dodgy dimmer it seems you may have mixed up the looped live, try swapping one of the two browns with the other single one. 

Or, could be a switching neutral somewhere,

tbh, it's not easy to diagnose from afar, but probably only a 10 minute job. 

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Yes you have messed up, the two browns that were together on one terminal got separated. and you have the wrong pair paired up.


You can analyse it until the cows come home but there are only 3 possible combinations, one you have doesn't work, so it won't take long to find the one that does.

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Thanks for the replies.


There was one point where all the wires came loose as I was connecting them. As 2 were together I assumed that they were the 2 to wires go into the same hole.


The answers make sense.


Thanks, I'll try swapping them over and see what happens I guess. Hopefully i won't damage anything.

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