04:59PM | 12/07/09
Member Since: 05/12/03
67 lifetime posts
I need to replace an in-wall 120V timer. To my suprise, the ones at the Big Box Stores all have four wires - red, white, black, and green (ground).

I have two wires coming out the wall to switch the light. Both black. The old timer also has two wires, not four. The house was built in 1983.

I could probably figure this out with enough looking through my old text books, but rather than risk blowing up the house I thought I would see if anyone knew how to do the wiring for sure.


Never buy a house built by an oil company...


01:54AM | 12/08/09
Member Since: 07/22/04
530 lifetime posts
"I could probably figure this out with enough looking through my old text books,"

didn't the new unit come with directions?

are there any other wires in that switch box that you could "tap" into ?

also are you trying to automatically control incandescent or flourescent lights.

answer these questions and somebody may be able to quide you on the best route to take.


03:25AM | 12/08/09
Member Since: 05/12/03
67 lifetime posts
I tried one timer - if I remember correctly it said to connect the white and black on the timer on one side, red to the other, green to ground. Since I had no ground, I just put a twist connector on the green wire.

When I did this, the timer just clicked on and off and so did the incandescent lights.

I switched house wires, same thing.


Never buy a house built by an oil company...

doug seibert

06:15AM | 12/08/09
Member Since: 08/10/02
842 lifetime posts
Quit tinkering!!.....Like Norm says.....Read, UNDERSTAND, and follow all the instructions........

If you only have TWO wire then you need a simple Spring Wound Timer....

You do NOT have the Neutral wire to support a powered/electronic timer....

You MAY have toasted the timer.....

"......measure Once.....cut Twice....

throw that one away and cut a new one...."


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