4-way switch cross up

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  #1  
Old 12-10-06, 06:28 PM
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4-way switch cross up

As a little weekend project I changed all my standard wall switches to rocker type switches, all except for the foyer. I have 3 switches that control the foyer light, one by the front door, one by the family room and one upstairs. The switch by the front door and upstairs are a 3-way switch. The one by the family room is where the 4-way switch. Yesterday I removed and replaced both 3-way switches. After replacing both 3-way switches all three switches were working as designed. I could turn on/off the foyer light at each switch, independant of each other. So that tells me the 3-way switches were wired correctly.

Today I continued with all the other switches in the house plus R&R last switch (4-way) for the foyer. The old switch didn't have any terminals marked, while the new switch had all four terminals marked. Two terminals marked "in" and two terminals marked "out". I thought I had a mental picture of which wire went where but after install the 4-way switch the foyer light is not working as designed.

Here's what happening. With the 4-way switch in one position neither 3-way switches will turn on the light and the 4-way switch itself doesn't turn on the light. With the 4-way switch in the other position then both 3-way switches will work. It's kinda light the 4-way switch is the master switch for the 3-way switches. If that makes sense.

Here's a pic of how the new 4-way switch in installed. I know it's a simple wire cross up at the 4-way switch but I just can't seem to figure it out plus I'm not trying to be too inquizitive. Also with the possibility of me installing a faulty switch.

http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_193_full.jpg
 
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  #2  
Old 12-10-06, 06:53 PM
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The black and red from each cable are a set of travelers.

One set of travelers goes on the "IN" terminals and one set goes on the "OUT" terminals.
 
  #3  
Old 12-10-06, 06:56 PM
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Make sure the red/black from one cable goes to the input, and the red/black from the other to the output.
 
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Old 12-10-06, 07:15 PM
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Don't mess with the 4-way. The problem is in one of the 3-ways.
 
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Old 12-10-06, 07:42 PM
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Lee, did you look at the pic? It is obviously wrong.
 
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Old 12-10-06, 07:51 PM
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Talking

Well of course, (after you scolded me, (just wanted to see if you were paying attention)(it was due, and accepted)).
Typicaly, In my experience, The travalers are hard to mess up.

Let this be a lesson to us all.
 
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Old 12-10-06, 08:06 PM
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Nah, not a scold. Just a heads up.
 
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Old 12-10-06, 08:46 PM
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It seems the problem has been identified and the correction pointed out, so I won't touch that.

I will add one comment more for the benefit of others reading this thread.

When you replace three way and four way switches, I recommend replacing one at a time. Turn the power back on after each switch and verify proper behavior at all switches before going on to the next switch.

Also, remember that if you make a mistake, there are only six ways to connect the wires to a three way switch (with two of those ways providing proper switch behavior) and 24 ways to hook up a four way switch (with four of those ways providing proper switch behavior). If all else fails, and you get the terminals mixed up and/or forget what wires came from which terminals on the old switch, you can always use trial and error.
 
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Old 12-10-06, 11:21 PM
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don't forget the ground wire pigtail!
 
  #10  
Old 12-11-06, 05:21 PM
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Ok gents, problem solved. As stated my wiring was incorrect, now all three switches are working as designed and I didn't forget the groundwire pigtail

Thanks
Mike
 
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