trouble with 3 way switch


Old 05-06-06, 06:29 AM
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Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 42
trouble with 3 way switch

i put a 3 way switch in and thought i did it correctly but i am having a proble with it. if you stand at the light switch and turn it on and of everything works fine. if you go to the secound switch with the light off and then turn the light on and off it works fine. but if you turn the light on with 1 switch and then turn it off at another and then go back to the first switch the lights dont work. not sure if i messed up or i have a bad switch
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Old 05-06-06, 07:12 AM
chandler's Avatar
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Rule one. Draw a diagram before you unwire anything. You have the line or load swapped with one of the runners. De-energize the circuit, remove the switch, and note the wires going to the screws. There is a black screw (this is "line" or "load"). Usually the black wire goes there with the white and red going to the remaining screws. Do this and post back with the results.
Old 05-06-06, 07:15 AM
bolide's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: PA
Posts: 1,909
> not sure if i messed up

It sure sounds like it. But it is easily to correct.

Three-way switches have one black screw.

You need to tell us what wires are in the box, which wires are hooked together, and which wires are hooked to the switch on which color of screw (black or brass).

Then we'll tell you which two wires to swap.
Old 05-06-06, 02:48 PM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Central New York State
Posts: 13,973
There are three wires to be connected. While that means that there are six combinations of possible connections, only three of those possibilities are necessary to try.

Try each wire on the odd colored screw, with the other two wires on the other screws. When you find the combination that works, you are done.

Next time remember to mark the wires that you remove from the old switch.

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