Toggle Switches

Toggle switches are among the most basic and most common of all electronic components, the switch moves contacts that either provide a path for current to flow through or moves those contacts in such a way that the path is cut. The toggle switches most people will be familiar with are light switches.

How Does a Toggle Switch Function?
Toggle switches may vary a bit in function from one to the next depending upon their configurations. However, the basics are the same.
When the actuator (the toggle itself) is moved, the armature in the switch moves the contact into position either energizing the circuit or de-energizing it. Once the switch is moved from one position to the other, it typically stays that way. There are also momentary switches, which energize or de-energize a circuit for as long as they are actuated and then go back to their normal state once the actuator is released. This is accomplished via a spring mechanism that exerts a force on the armature from the inside.

Contact Configuration of a Toggle Switch
  • A single pole single throw (SPST) switch is the simplest and most common type of toggle switch. These switches allow simple on and off operation for a single circuit. Most light switches are SPST switches.
  • Single pole double throw (SPDT) switches can be used to change where a voltage is directed. The double throw means that the switch can be used to energize two different circuits - one at a time - from a single source of energy.
  • Double pole single throw (DPST) switches allow an operation that is very similar to having two SPST switches hooked together in one device. The switch can turn two circuits on and off. These are very convenient when more than one device needs to be controlled with the same switch.
  • Double pole double throw (DPDT) switches allow two different circuits to be served by the same pole. These are used in applications where a circuit may need to have changing voltages applied to connected devices.

There are also switches with the designation CO, such as SPCO (single pole changeover) switches. These have an off position in the middle of the switch and can be used to energize or de-energize two different circuits attached to the device.

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Description Price Contact Configuration Switch Operation Contact Current Rating Mounting Type Terminal Type IP Rating Illuminated Panel Cut Out Width Panel Cut Out Height Panel Cut Out Diameter Actuator Length Actuator Material Voltage Rating Contact Resistance
RS Stock No. 861-0270
Mfr. Part No.C3900BAAAA
£5.30
Each
Units
Single Pole Single Throw (SPST) Latching 16 A @ 250 V ac Panel Mount Tab - - - - 12.7mm 17.5mm Metal - -
RS Stock No. 350-204
Mfr. Part No.C1700HOAAG
£3.12
Each
Units
Single Pole Single Throw (SPST) Latching 16 A @ 250 V ac Panel Mount Solder, Tab IP40 - - - 12.7mm 16.4mm PC - 100mΩ
RS Stock No. 350-232
Mfr. Part No.C1750HOAAI
£2.80
Each
Units
Double Pole Single Throw (DPST) Latching 20 A @ 250 V ac Panel Mount Solder, Tab IP40 - - - 12.7mm 16.4mm PC - 100mΩ
RS Stock No. 350-254
Mfr. Part No.C1770HOAAF
£5.26
Each
Units
Double Pole Double Throw (DPDT) On-Off-On 20 A @ 250 V ac Panel Mount Solder, Tab IP40 - - - 12.7mm 16.4mm PC - 100mΩ
RS Stock No. 350-210
Mfr. Part No.C1710HOAAC
£3.23
Each
Units
Single Pole Double Throw (SPDT) Latching 20 A @ 250 V ac Panel Mount Solder, Tab IP40 - - - 12.7mm 16.4mm PC - 100mΩ
RS Stock No. 350-248
Mfr. Part No.C1760HOAAF
£4.90
Each
Units
Double Pole Double Throw (DPDT) Latching 16 A Panel Mount Solder, Tab IP40 - - - 12.7mm 16.4mm PC - 100mΩ
RS Stock No. 350-226
Mfr. Part No.C1720HOAAG
£3.49
Each
Units
Single Pole Double Throw (SPDT) On-Off-On 20 A @ 250 V ac Panel Mount Solder, Tab IP40 - - - 12.7mm 16.4mm PC - 100mΩ
RS Stock No. 861-0298
Mfr. Part No.C3950BBAAA
£6.75
Each
Units
Double Pole Single Throw (DPST) Latching 20 A Panel Mount Tab - - - - 12.7mm 17.5mm Metal - -
RS Stock No. 861-0295
Mfr. Part No.C3922BAAAA
£6.60
Each
Units
Single Pole Double Throw (SPDT) (On)-Off-(On) 20 A Panel Mount Tab - - - - 12.7mm 17.5mm Metal - -
RS Stock No. 861-0309
Mfr. Part No.C3972BBAAA
£8.15
Each
Units
Double Pole Double Throw (DPDT) (On)-Off-(On) 20 A Panel Mount Tab - - - - 12.7mm 17.5mm Metal - -
RS Stock No. 861-0292
Mfr. Part No.C3960BBAAA
£6.98
Each
Units
Double Pole Double Throw (DPDT) Latching 20 A Panel Mount Tab - - - - 12.7mm 17.5mm Metal - -
RS Stock No. 861-0305
Mfr. Part No.C3970BBAAA
£7.45
Each
Units
Double Pole Double Throw (DPDT) On-Off-On 20 A Panel Mount Tab - - - - 12.7mm 17.5mm Metal - -
RS Stock No. 861-0286
Mfr. Part No.C3920BAAAA
£6.10
Each
Units
Single Pole Double Throw (SPDT) On-Off-On 20 A Panel Mount Tab - - - - 12.7mm 17.5mm Metal - -
RS Stock No. 861-0302
Mfr. Part No.C3961BBAAA
£4.00
Each
Units
Double Pole Double Throw (DPDT) (On)-On 20 A Panel Mount Tab - - - - 12.7mm 17.5mm Metal - -
RS Stock No. 861-0289
Mfr. Part No.C3910BAAAA
£6.00
Each
Units
Single Pole Double Throw (SPDT) Latching 20 A Panel Mount Tab - - - - 12.7mm 17.5mm Metal - -
RS Stock No. 861-0282
Mfr. Part No.C3911BAAAA
£6.25
Each
Units
Single Pole Double Throw (SPDT) (On)-On 20 A Panel Mount Tab - - - - 12.7mm 17.5mm Metal - -