What is a capacitive touch switch?

16mm touch switch - AB-AV-TS-1671 Touch Switch - AB-AV-TS-1980

Touch switches are a type of switch typically activated by the touch of a human operator. There are three main types of touch switch:

  • Capacitive
  • Resistive
  • Piezo

For the purpose of this article, we are focusing on capacitive. Capacitive or capacitance switches work by detecting changes in capacitance or electrical charge. The human body generates an electrical charge and this is detected when you touch the surface of the switch. The capacitance increases and the switch activates, responding with the appropriate action.

Alan Butcher Components has introduced a range of panel mount capacitive touch switches. Highly durable, these products are dirt, dust and moisture resistive. With no moving parts, they have a long lifespan and are easily maintained.

Typical Applications for Touch Switches:

  • Medical and food products (can be operated using medical gloves)
  • Domestic appliances – aesthetically attractive switches which appeal to consumers
  • Vending machines
  • Industrial control panels
  • Infotainment centres

Key Features/Switch Options:

  • Electrical endurance: 50,000,000 cycles
  • Cut-outs: 16mm, 19mm, 22mm
  • Momentary or Latching function
  • IP68 / IK10
  • LED illumination – single or dual (also available with a 30 second time delay)
  • Colours: Green/Red/Blue/Orange/White
  • Operating voltages: 5VDC / 12VDC /24VDC
  • Internal resistor

In our experience, customer requirements for touch switches are often very specific to individual applications. The available switch options offer significant choice for the design engineer. MOQs are relatively low so there is no need to compromise on the switch you want. Lead-times are usually 4-6 weeks from receipt of order.

These switches make a significant visual impact. If you want your design to make a statement, then look no further than the AB-TS-AV range of capacitive touch switches.


To find out more:

Alan Butcher Components Ltd. is a UK distributor of electronic and electro mechanical components.



Our products are used in a diverse range of applications including:

  • White goods (washing machines, ovens, tumble dryers)
  • Kitchen and bathroom units
  • Medical products
  • Distribution boxes
  • Caravans and boats
  • Air conditioning and heating products
  • Household appliances (showers, coffee machines,
  • Recording studios
  • Security applications


We have established strong working relationships with all of our suppliers to ensure the products we distribute are of the highest quality. These manufacturers develop new solutions and new technologies to ensure continuous improvements to their products and processes.

With this support, Alan Butcher Components offer innovative products designed to the highest specifications and manufactured using modern, efficient production lines.

We have franchise and/or agency agreements with the following manufacturers:

  • Everel