GE Smart Switches shorting out when putting wall plate in!

(Weston T Turner) #1

Hello all!!
Anybody had this problem. I just had it happen on another GE dimmer toggle switch. This is 2/6. It’s almost like the screws that came with the old existing wall plates are too long and it is touching something back inside of the switch and shorting it out. You can literally make an extra half turn of the screw and the light turns off, back it out a half turn and it turns back on.- the problem is when it shorts the light out, the wall plate screw isn’t all the way driven (so I can’t just leave it like that)

This seems awfully “touchy” to have this happen at a rate which is too me unusually high (2/6).

Does anyone here have any suggestions/ or have had this problem on their end?

(JBrown) #2

The ge switches should have came with short screws. You can cut the screws of the original cover with on of these I believe they are 6/32 screws

(Weston T Turner) #3

So apparently after a little research. The itsy bitsy screws that come with it. Yeah, you’re supposed to use those because of that reason I assume. I didn’t read the manual… And that’s what I get…
So, just wanted to update the post to reflect the answer so when someone else does the same thing, it’s here.

(Weston T Turner) #4

@Jason_Brown. Thak you for that response. I luckily hadn’t thrown any of the boxes away so I was able to pull the short screws and use them appropriately. But if I were to have thrown them away like I may would have a few weeks from now. I definitely would’ve took the response above. I’m sure this will help others like me whom don’t like to read the directions. :wink:

(Dave) #5

Yup, this seemed crazy at first. The old wall plate had screws that were 5/8 inch or so, and when they were screwed all the way in (to hold the wall plate on over the new GE switch), the switch quit working.

When I looked in the package and found the short replacement screws – clearly for a wall plate, as they were painted white, etc. – and put them in in place of the old longer screws, the switch worked great.

And I’m thinking they wouldn’t normally include replacement wall plate screws with a switch unless they were somehow key to the install, so go figure.

Looking into the wall box, it almost seems like the longer (old) wall plate screws I had used were somehow contacting the ground wire screw terminal and/or the body of the switch at the same time - ? Which might explain why it was shorting out…

But GE should make this more explicit, as I don’t actually recall seeing this in the instructions.