Self-Contained Switches/Receptacles in Mobile Home

Discussion in 'Electrical Forum discussion & Blog' started by kailor, Mar 4, 2013.

  1. kailor

    kailor New Member

    Messages:
    22
    Location:
    Huntsville, Alabama
    I'm helping my brother repair a mobile home and it is wired with self-contained switches/receptacles (14-2). In several areas we had to replace the sheet rock and thus installed new-construction gang boxes for the switches/receptacles. I'm fairly confident with regard to rewiring the receptacles but am not sure about the switches. By the front door there are 3 separate self-contained switches. Each of the three switches has 3 romex wires that terminate in the self-contained device. Each switch was wired exactly the same (per each switch - all ground wires laid on each other in the ground terminal, all white wires laid on each other across both neutral terminals and finally, all 3 black wires were laid on each other across both hot terminals but all 3 black wires had a section removed between the 2 hot terminals (per switch - none of the 3 black wires were continuous across both hot terminals). There is no 14-3 wire in any of these 3 switches. There is no power connected to this mobile home. All of our worked is being performed via portable generator.

    1. How would I wire each of these self-contained switches to normal switches?
    2. Are these all single pole switches?
    3. Are these self-contained devices safe and reliable?
    4. If it were you, would you replace all self-contained devices in this mobile home?

    Thanks very much in advance! Keith.
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2013
  2. jwelectric

    jwelectric Electrical Contractor/Instructor

    Messages:
    2,565
    Location:
    North Carolina
    the switch will open and close the black conductor.
    Don’t know as I can’t see them but by what you have posted I would say so
    They were installed and they are listed so yes they are safe. If you are asking if I like them that is a different story
    I never fix something that ain’t broke, you know like the old saying, “if it ain’t broke, then don’t fix it”

    You are very welcome
  3. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    27,258
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    1. Neutral wires do NOT connect to switches if that is actually what you state in the posting.
    2. Three wires connected to a single switch COULD indicate a 3 way switch, but there is no way to tell without being there and tracing or testing the wiring.
    3. Do the switches have the words "ON" and "OFF" on the toggle?
  4. kailor

    kailor New Member

    Messages:
    22
    Location:
    Huntsville, Alabama
    Thanks for quick inputs. I did not take note of whether the switches were labeled on/off.
  5. Igor

    Igor New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    Oregon
    You can find the instructions for one commonly-used brand of self-contained devices here:
    Wirecon Installation Guide.
    Note that the end of the document mentions some ways to install the device without using the expensive installation tool.
    I believe Pass & Seymour manufactures a similar line of products, but the method of installation is a little different.
    For a DIYer, the main advantage of self-contained devices is that they will fit in a shallow wall where there may not be enough depth for a standard device box.

    In a manufactured home or RV, you may also find self-contained splices in use. There is some information about these devices here:
    Molex Self-Contained Power Connector
    and here:
    Amp Non-Metallic Cable Splices
  6. kailor

    kailor New Member

    Messages:
    22
    Location:
    Huntsville, Alabama
    None of the three switches were labeled "on/off." They may be single pole with 2 power taps.

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