I need to know how to wire an illuminated LED switch. Like this kind: LED illuminated pushbutton switches

There are more than two pin connectors on the switch, I know that some must be connected to a power source, and some to the thing I'm going to be turning on and off. Do you know if I need to add anything special so that It will work? Or can you just show me what needs to be connected to what, I think I know how to wire it, but I'm not sure. Should it be wired, 2 pins to power source, 2 to circuit turned on or off, and one to ground?(5 pins total on it)

  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ Do you have a datasheet or at least a manufacturer part number? Apart from different LED characteristics sometimes those sorts of switches have internal current limit resistors so the question will be impossible to answer otherwise. Also what voltage are you looking at supplying to it? \$\endgroup\$ – PeterJ Jan 31 '13 at 10:59
  • \$\begingroup\$ Those two are not the same switch: The first has metallic threads, while the latter has black plastic. The first image is from MP3Car.com, and is shown on the linked page as having 6 screw-type terminals. Please edit the question and correct this, to avoid it getting voted for closure under the "wild goose chase" clause. \$\endgroup\$ – Anindo Ghosh Jan 31 '13 at 11:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ What does this have to do with electronic design? \$\endgroup\$ – Leon Heller Jan 31 '13 at 11:52
  • \$\begingroup\$ @LeonHeller, I'm using this for a futuristic looking project I have in mind, so I need to know how to wire the switch. \$\endgroup\$ – A.I. Jan 31 '13 at 20:51

Whenever you come across a part with unknown connections, the first thing to do is look for the datasheet!

If you can figure out the manufacturer (look for small print, logos, engravings) you can often find more information about the product line. If you can't find the exact part, often you can find something from the same line and the datasheet may cover all models in that line.

If you don't understand the pinout from the datasheet, then by all means post a question about it and one of our friendly members will be happy to assist.

After all that, if there is just no information to be found, you can figure it out by trial and error. Relays and switches are two of the easier things to determine pinout using a voltmeter and a little deduction.

A lighted switch first and foremost is going to have poles and throws just like a normal switch. When these are closed they will be shorted and when open will have "infinite" resistance. A continuity test will quickly find these. The pins that power the LED are usually (but not always) separate, allowing you the option of having the light always on, or lit with a particular position on the switch.

Look for datasheets on a lighted switches in general, you'll probably quickly get an idea of what the various pins are for on the one you have in particular.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I can't find any data sheets, so I think i'll do trial and error. Do you think I'll need resistors for the connections made to the switch,If I just connect them directly, will it burn out the LED? \$\endgroup\$ – A.I. Jan 31 '13 at 21:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ An LED lighted pushbutton often will have an internal resistor, and specify that the light requires a 6, 12 or 24V source voltage. To be on the safe side, you could test with a current-limiting resistor first, treating the connection as though it goes to a standard LED. Calculate the resistor value for say, 20mA forward current and a voltage drop across the LED of 1.5 to 2V. If the light is too dim (or does not light), it may already have a resistor, but you'd then need to know what its expected input voltage is. \$\endgroup\$ – JYelton Jan 31 '13 at 22:48

protected by W5VO Feb 1 '13 at 3:18

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