New Dimmer Switch Has Aluminum Ground – Can I Attach To Copper Ground?





I am remodeling my home and adding dimmer switches to all the rooms. All the dimmer switches I bought for every room have a type of stranded aluminum grounding wire. This wire does not match with the copper ground wire in all the switch boxes. Do the wires have to be exactly the same to be grounded properly? Can I attach this silver aluminum wire to the copper ground wire in the switch box safely?

dimmer switch has different grounding wire colordimmer switch has different grounding wire color

The short answer is yes the wire IS a grounding wire. The stranded aluminum wire that is on the new dimmer switches are not aluminum. The wire is a tinned copper which makes it look like it is aluminum or silver. Usually these tinned wires are tinned at the very end to stop it from ever fraying. You can hook the tinned ground wire up to the ground. The wire itself is silver in color, not aluminum, so yes connect the wires together and it is 100% safe and grounded.

Many of the new wall light dimmers and other wall light switches have the ground wire where the copper strand is plated with a thin coating of tin. The tin is there to provide a resistance to corrosion and oxidation. This also permits the insulation to be stripped away easier.







There are dimmer switch wiring diagrams are below if you need any more assistance.

single pole (one light) dimmer wiring diagramsingle pole (one light) dimmer wiring diagram


How to Install a Dimmer Switch

Dimmer Switch Wiring Diagram - Single PoleDimmer Switch Wiring Diagram – Single Pole

Questions on dimmer switches about grounding? Please let us know below.


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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 Beck October 30, 2015 at 2:18 pm

Thanks for clarifying the aluminum ground switch. I also thought it was aluminum and had no idea it was actually copper. I guess the copper would work really well for dimmer lights. I recently got some dimmer lights that I’m trying to install and want to make sure I’m using the correct material for it.

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