Rocker switches are electrical switches with an operating button that users can press on either end to connect or disconnect an electrical circuit. The primary power sources for electrical equipment are frequently employed as ON/OFF switches. They come in various configurations: three-position, momentary, maintained, and two-position on/off. Read More…
Rocker SwitchesRocker switches are electrical switches, the movement of which resembles a seesaw over a fulcrum.
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There are three electrical connections on 3-way rocker switches:
The input power is delivered to the rocker switch at the pin.
The device the switch will activate is linked to the pin.
The switch is connected to the ground or is left unconnected at the pin.
Momentary Rocker Switch Configuration
When users press a standard rocker switch, it latches into that position and stays there until it is moved the other way. However, a momentary switch only activates when it is depressed and goes back to its normal setting when it is not.
Maintained Rocker Switch Configuration
Maintained rocker switches have three positions- UP, DOWN, and sustaining- and operate similarly to an automobile window switch. This rocker switch style implies that internal limit switches will disconnect the power to the actuator once it has completed its full stroke. When the user presses the switch, it remains in that position. One only needs to depress the switch's down button to bring the actuator back.
Rocker Switch Components:
Rocker switches are complex devices consisting of various yet critical parts. Below, we discuss many of these components.
Users must push the operation button to operate the functions manually. Certain switches indicate the ON/OFF condition on the button.
Rubber sealing is a rubber component used to seal the switch and protect it from moisture.
Spring and Contacts
The spring inside the switch is made by a leaf spring that has a contact attached at its end. When the switch is turned ON, the spring immediately advances its contact to another, fixed contact within the rocker switch unit. This connection of contacts provides electrical flow. However, this connection is broken as the spring retracts when switched back to the OFF position.
The switch's cover wraps around the interior casing to safeguard the rubber sealing and hold it in place.
Terminals must fix one of the contacts to ensure connection. This contact is linked to one of the terminal ends.
Configurations for Pole and Throw:
One conductor in a single branch circuit can be connected or disconnected using SPST rocker switches. This sort of switch is referred to as a single-pole, single-throw switch and normally has two terminals.
A single conductor can be connected to one of two additional single conductors using SPDT (single-pole, double-throw) rocker switches. Typically having three terminals, these switches are frequently used in pairs. Three-way switches are another name for SPDT switches.
Two source terminals are frequently connected to the corresponding output terminals using a double-pole, single-throw (DPST) switch, which has four terminals (but never to each other). DPST rocker switches make or break the connection between two circuit conductors in a single branch circuit. Normally, they have four terminals.
Two wires can be connected to two different circuits using DPDT (double-pole, double-throw) rocker switches. They typically come in versions with momentary and sustained contacts and have six terminals. In their (normal) condition, the contacts of a normally open (NO) rocker switch are either open or unconnected. Conversely, contacts in a normally- closed (NC) rocker switch are closed or connected when they are in their (normal) condition.
Momentary ON - when the rocker switch is in the typical, open (NO) position, it depicts connections that break the circuit. Momentary OFF - when the rocker switch is in the typical, closed (NC) position, describes connections that create a circuit. Momentary center-NEUTRAL rocker switches with three positions feature an OFF or NEUTRAL function in the middle.
Specifications for Rocker Switches
As previously discussed, there are various types of rocker switches with different methods and functions of operation and feature numerous components. Below, we list a variety of other factors to consider when choosing an appropriate rocker switch for one's application:
Dimensions, electrical ratings, terminal types, materials, and functions are among the crucial parameters to consider for rocker switches.
present rating ceiling
highest AC voltage
highest DC voltage
greatest power rating
longest mechanical life
dimensions or diameter
panel width and thickness
blade or quick-connect terminals
surface-mount engineering (SMT)
slender PC pins
straight PC pins
PC side pins
Resources Used in the Construction of Rocker Switches
Most rocker switch bases and actuators are constructed from metal, thermoplastic, or plastic materials.
The Uses of Rocker Switches
instrumentation front portions (shut-off switches)
electrical apparatus (power supplies, power outlet strips, battery chargers)
appliances for the home (small and large, vacuum cleaners, food equipment)
computers and related devices (servers, network hubs, routers)
small apparatus (handheld devices, electric tools, office equipment)
emergency lighting, generators, and lighting fixtures
medical devices (surgical tools, hospital beds, etc.)
The toggle, paddle, and rocker-operated family of certified quality special-use electro-mechanical switches are covered by subsection specification EIA-520D000.
Naval Electronic Systems Command, Department of the Navy, has approved this specification sheet, which is available for use by all Department of Defense Departments and Agencies.
Choosing the Right Rocker Switch Supplier
To make sure you have the most positive outcome when purchasing rocker switches from a rocker switch supplier, it is important to compare several companies using our directory of rocker switch suppliers. Each rocker switch supplier has a business profile page highlighting their areas of experience and capabilities, along with a contact form to directly communicate with the supplier for more information or request a quote. Review each rocker switch business website using our proprietary website previewer for a better idea of what each company specializes in. Then, use our simple RFQ form to contact multiple rocker switch businesses with the same form.
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