Pull Cord Switches

A pull cord switch, sometimes called a light pull, is an electrical switch which features a cord or string to control it. These switches are commonly found on the ceiling of bathrooms or other areas where water is present.

Why use a pull cord switch?

Pull switches have a cord which prevents wet hands from coming directly into contact with the mains electricity. The pull cord is often made from a fabric or other material which does not conduct electricity either.
Standard plate switches are not permitted near showers, for example, as the water or condensation could come into contact with the switch and be very dangerous. The use of a pull switch means that the power can be situated away from water, usually on the ceiling, to prevent any contact.

What do they control?

Pull cord switches can be used to control an electrical circuit. Popular uses include bathroom lights, electric showers or fans. Pull cord switches are also used for disabled toilet alarms.
The pull switches come with different voltage and current ratings. For example, 6 Amp switches are used for lighting.

How do they work?

Traditional pull cord switches have a cord which, when pulled downwards, turns the switch on. They often make a unique click sound when switched on/off. The pull cord can be pulled downwards again to turn the switch off.
Some pull switches feature a light which indicates when the switch is on. These are ideal for applications like electric showers as it is not obvious when they are switched on or off otherwise.

Types of Pull Switch

Standard cord switches are usually white. There is often a handle at the end of the cord to enable you to pull the cord downwards easily. The electronic part of the switch sits within a plastic housing which fixes to the ceiling by screws.
Pull switch alarms often have a red cord or handle to draw attention. They are used in disabled toilets, for example, if someone needs to raise the alarm for assistance. Therefore pull switch alarms need to stand out in case of emergency.

1-Way vs. 2-Way Pull Cord Switches

A 1-way switch, also known as 1 gang switch, is a simple on/off switch. 1 2-way switch enables you to control a single light or multiple lights from two switches.

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Description Price Cord Length Voltage Rating Current Rating Fixing Centres Neon Indicator Supported Lamp Type
RS Stock No. 500-0465
Mfr. Part No.3190RCWHI
2m 250V 6A 50.8mm - Fluorescent
RS Stock No. 514-2452
Mfr. Part No.8329 SS WHI
1.5m - - - - -
RS Stock No. 325-393
Mfr. Part No.3192 WHI
1.5m 250V 6A 50.8mm - Fluorescent
RS Stock No. 325-400
Mfr. Part No.3164 WHI
1.5m - 50A 60.3mm Yes -
RS Stock No. 407-0592
Mfr. Part No.S1600-R
- 250V 5A - - -
RS Stock No. 175-2872
Mfr. Part No.CAC1766
- 250V 50A 3mm Yes -