3-Way Switch wiring

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  #1  
Old 10-05-05, 09:15 AM
garthpro
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adding another switch

I am in a similar situation. I bought a house with a working switch in place for the garage light, and the previous owner said he had placed a second switch inside, it just needed to be wired! (it is a three way)but I think the working switch is a 2-way!?
how should I proceed?
 
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  #2  
Old 10-05-05, 09:30 AM
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We need to know everything. Shut off the breaker, pull everything out of the box without disconnecting anything, and tell us everything you see: all cables, all wires, all connections. When describing wires, tell us what color wire and from what cable. When describing switch connections, be sure to identify the color of the screw that the wire is attached to (or the color of the screw adjacent to the hole that the wire is poked into).
 
  #3  
Old 10-05-05, 10:23 AM
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You also need to tell us where you plan to place the new switch. Not so much where, but how you want to connect it. You need to run a new 12-3 or 14-3 wire from the new switch, but you can run it to the light or to the existing switch. The wiring directions we can provide will depend on where you connect in that new switch.
 
  #4  
Old 10-05-05, 10:56 AM
garthpro
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sorry for delay, cable went out to boot!!! I have two lights with power (paper coated) to lite closer to switch. from paper (power cable) I have one White (W) and one Black (B). B goes to switch, W splits and goes each way to a lite. B coming back from far lite splits & goes into Power/near lite and to switch.
At switch, there is a black wirde into the top hole, white out bottom hole. when switch is down, lite is off.
This is existing.
From the new switch, three way, a cable is run up to the attic. at the switch, there is a black wire attached to a black screw below wohich is a white wire, plain screw. opposite side, lower position is a red wire attached to a plain screw.
I believe this gives me several options for wiring this new switch into the system?
 
  #5  
Old 10-05-05, 11:27 AM
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Are these two switches (one single-pole and one 3-way) you described in the same box?

Where does this cable go that goes into the attic from the 3-way?

I assume that you want the existing single-pole switch to continue to control the two lights (near and far). But what do you want the new 3-way switch to control? And where do you intend to put the other 3-way switch?
 
  #6  
Old 10-05-05, 11:34 AM
garthpro
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I must be more clear! sorry.
-Existing single pole is out in garage, near outside door.. 3-way will be at inside door. about 10 feet away.
-I want them both to control both lites.
-New 3-way is hooked to the cable, runs into the attic, but is NOT connected to anything. The prior owner moved b4 he got around to hooking it up.
 
  #7  
Old 10-05-05, 11:38 AM
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If the cable in the attic is long enough to reach the existing single-pole switch box, then route it there. Otherwise, put a covered permanently-accessible junction box in the attic and use it to splice new black/red/white/bare cable from there to the existing single-pole switch box. Once you get that far, post back and we'll detail the connections in the existing single-pole switch box. Of course, you'll need to buy another 3-way switch to complete the project.
 
  #8  
Old 10-05-05, 12:36 PM
garthpro
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after some digging up there. I don't know if a 3-way wire can be dropped thru the wall to the existing single! It is going to be a hellova job. maybe I should drop that switch and go to the single switch inside the house. most times I go out that door, I am coming from the inside anyway.! Feels like the lazy way out, but sometimes you gotta cut and run!
That said, I can unhook that switch, easy, where should I jack the 3-way switchh into the system to operate it that way?
BAsed on easiest introduction into the system.
 
  #9  
Old 10-05-05, 12:41 PM
garthpro
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ps to last post, :
keeping in mind I may get bored in a few months and decide to throw that 3-way switch in where the single pole is now.
 
  #10  
Old 10-05-05, 06:15 PM
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Why, without running the other end to the switch? A 3 way requires two switches to do its thing, and 3 insulated wires between the two. Otherwise a single 3-way switch is no better than a plain toggle switch.
 
  #11  
Old 10-05-05, 06:40 PM
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I don't know if a 3-way wire can be dropped thru the wall to the existing single! It is going to be a hellova job.
Just the contrary. This is an extremely trivial thing to do.
 
  #12  
Old 10-05-05, 07:34 PM
garthpro
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I dropped the 3-way wire to the new 3- way switch that I put in place of the single pole. ( over two eves and thru a ventilation screen!) that new three way now has a Black wire on the Black screw, white above that and red across form it. I did not cut the wire I ran until I heard back regarding the placement of the switches in the system inrelation to the power and lights etc.
 
  #13  
Old 10-05-05, 07:43 PM
garthpro
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Inregards to classic cat, the new 3 way i was installed my someone else, but not hooked into the line. It was the locaton that I wanted. as it was inside the door to the garage. the single pole was near the door from garage to outside, Not convenient.! I was somply trying to cut back on my work load by using the other guys work already inplace/ if he had not already placed that 3 way., I would have simply run a toggle down to the position I wanted.

In regards to dropping the 3 way to the current single pole position , not that it couldn';t be done, just that the builders (1959) had looped the wire all over hell and back to find that switch position. it was like sending a rat thru a maze, not a simple drop down from the eves. If it were that, I would already have had that in place before I got on here.

So that said, and already having the second 3 way in place and wired, what is the best way to run the circuit? I have power cooming in thru the light, out to the other light, and out to the old single pole.
 
  #14  
Old 10-05-05, 08:20 PM
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Not sure I fully understand. Is there a black/red/white/bare cable now running between the two switch boxes?
 
  #15  
Old 10-05-05, 08:33 PM
garthpro
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I used the Home-improvement-web.com and found like 7 diagrams.
Used those along with some farm boy skills I pict up way back when I was one. and finshed the job.
there was no comnection b/t the switches.
the one I wanted to add was a dead switch that the guy had dropped planning to finish later. then sold the house.
I wanted to complete the job.
Not sure what his plans were, but I added the 3 way in place of the single pole. pulled the wires into place with a thin rope. that was the *****, cause they went all over the place.
now I have powre to one light, with two end switches going opposite directions, one at each door. and the second light powered off the first.
It all works the way it should. And I am happier for it since I didn;t need my hand held!
I appreciate tbe info you provided thoguh/.
When I hook everything up tomorrow, I have confidence it will light.
I'll let you know.
 
  #16  
Old 10-06-05, 02:17 PM
garthpro
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works fine. except ethe guy installed a broken 3- wa switch. nothing some jb weld couldn't hold together.
Home-improvement-web.com has awesome diagrams for 3 and 4 way. easy to blow up and read / follow.
 
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