3 Dimmers For One Light

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  #1  
Old 03-18-07, 10:16 AM
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Post 3 Dimmers For One Light

The power wire is feed first to a switch, (a three-way switch) from there to the next switch, (a four-way switch) from the four way switch you feed the light, and from the light you feed the last switch. (a three-way switch)


I want to know if I can replace all switches with 3 way dimmer switches (one smart controller with two slave switches). The three dimmers worked for another light in my home but that light was wired differently, the power started at a switch and ended at the light. The standard wiring info in the box worked before but this light that I'm dealing with now as you can see above is wired differently and everything I have read doesn't address my specific wring problem. The question is with the circuit I have described above can I install all dimmers or will I have to stick with the two 3 way and one 4 way switch configuration? Thanks

Patrick
 
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  #2  
Old 03-18-07, 10:21 AM
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do you have a link to the wiring diagram of the smart controllers?

purhaps to the mfg web site?
 
  #3  
Old 03-18-07, 10:25 AM
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You need two three ways and a four way. If they worked on the other circuit they will work on this circuit. It doesn't matter how the cables are routed the switches still work the same.
 
  #4  
Old 03-18-07, 11:43 AM
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Still Need Help

Jwhite and Joed,

I have the wiring diagram still doesn’t help and I want to replace my 3 switches (2-3way and 1-4way with all dimmers), that’s what worked on the other light but I cannot get this one to work because of how it is wired… I called tech support they told me I have to rewire wire the light or I cannot use the multi location dimmers for my circuit. The reason I was told was that the last three way switch has a white common wire, the tech told me that the dimmer will not work if connected to a common white wire.

http://www.lightingfacts.com/Four%20way%20switches.html#TOP

The link above has the wiring for what I’m dealing with. #8 diagram is what I needed and had on the other light for the dimmers to work and what I currently dealing is wired like #15.

My question now is what if anything can do to make my light wired like #15 diagram to wire it like #8? I have looked at both diagrams with my limited knowledge cannot see how to rewire the light without some major rework. Thanks for the quick reply…

Patrick
 
  #5  
Old 03-18-07, 11:50 AM
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Info Requested

http://www.lutron.com/wiringdiagrams/ShowWiring.asp?WD=12,20,21&Prod=MA-600-,&20MA-1000-,&20MALV-600-,&20and&20MALV-1000-

INFO you requested, as you can see the diagram by Lutron only have the light at the end of the ciruit, no info for one that have the light in the middle like what i have see previous post.

Thanks again...
 
  #6  
Old 03-18-07, 01:22 PM
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You can make this work.
Tell us the wires in the three switch boxes and the light. I don't have drawing program or a scanner so I can't make an actual drawing for you.
 
  #7  
Old 03-18-07, 02:38 PM
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Info You Asked For

http://www.lightingfacts.com/Four%20way%20switches.html#TOP

The link above has what you need to see how my switches are wired, #15 diagram... if you can't get to this linkl here is the info:

The power comes in the 1st 3 way switch (one blk wire on black terminal, another blk wire on copper terminal and one red on blue terminal with white common in the back of the box), the 2nd switch is the four way switch location (standard two red and two blk with white common in the back again), than the power is sent to the light fixture (one red, one black and the white, I think this is correct because I cannot take the light fixture apart, it is up to high for me to get at right now). Another reason why I know the power is routed to the light fixture in between the last switch is because of the wires in the last switch, the 3rd switch a 3 way has a white wire on the blk terminal, red on copper and black on blue. The tech guys for Lutron told me that the dimmers will not work with a circuit connect the why my circuit is connected. I hope this helps. At this point all I want to know is there a quick fix to route the circuit so the power enters at one 3way, goes to the 4way switch location, then the other 3 way before going to the light. The link above is the easies example, my circuit is wired exactly like number 15 but I need it wired like number 8.

Thanks again...for looking at this problem...see other post above this one
 
  #8  
Old 03-18-07, 04:11 PM
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I can't figure out what the difference is between #21 and #20. The drawings have red and black wires reversed onthe switch hookups but I don't understand why. If this doesn't work you might need to swap the switch black and red connections.

This should work.
r2 b2 w2 cable betwen sw1 and 2
r3 b3 w3 cable between sw 2 and fixture
r4 b4 w4 cable between fixture and last switch.
SW1
power black to sw1 black
power white to white2
sw1 red to blk2
red 2 to sw blue.

SW2
b2 to sw2 black
r2 to r3 and sw2 blue
sw2 red to b3
white to white

fixture
w3 to fixture white
b3 to w4
red3 to red4
fixture black to b4

SW4
w4 to sw3 black
b4 to sw3 red
r4 to sw3 blue.


Connect all grounds
 
  #9  
Old 03-18-07, 04:31 PM
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By the way over half of those drawings on the page you linked to are WRONG. They have two white wires going to the fixture. This is a code violation. You must have only one white and either a black or red using the cable shown. You could use other colors if they were present just not white or grey.
 
  #10  
Old 03-18-07, 05:03 PM
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Thanks For The Help

Joed,

The connection you sent me did work when I used the regular switches ie two regular 3 way and one regular 4 way. However, when I use the dimmers the light either stays on or nothing works.

You lost me with #20 and #21, I wanted you to look at #8 and #15. #15 is the one I having problems with because I need it to be like #8.

Thanks for the help but I think I will just put the regular switches back and be done with this project. It would have been nice to dim the lights but oh well.
 
  #11  
Old 03-18-07, 06:17 PM
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the #20 and #21 are dimmer manufacture drawing. #8 and #15 are regular switch drawings.
 
  #12  
Old 03-18-07, 06:19 PM
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From what site???? please sent link so I can see it thanks
 
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Old 03-18-07, 06:33 PM
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I found #21 and #20 as you can see with those diagram the light is at the end of the circuit but the light I'm dealing with is wired with the light in between the 2nd sw and 3rd sw that is why I cannot use the dimmers wiring diagram. The other wiring diagram I sent you was to give you an example of what I dealing with and if I can rewire my fixture to make it work with the dimmers or not.

Thanks

Patrick
 
  #14  
Old 03-18-07, 06:58 PM
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It's a darn shame that web sites like the one referenced, which appear so helpful, show so many code violations.
 
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Old 03-18-07, 07:15 PM
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Dimmer or not. A 3-way is a 3-way. Are you sure your dimmer has not been destroyed by all the different configs you tried with the power on?

They (electronics) hate getting connected with the power on. 8 out of 10 times we wind up buying new dimmers.
 
  #16  
Old 03-18-07, 07:17 PM
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Are you telling me my home was not coded correctly. I only used the website as a reference to find out how a praticular light fiixture was wired and why the same dimmer set up I had already used didn't work for a second light fixture . Now it looks like you all are telling me my home was incorrectly wired? or should have never been wried the way it has been wired. I didn't change anything but remove the switches to add dimmers.

Patrick
 
  #17  
Old 03-18-07, 07:21 PM
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If your comment is directed to me, I made no comment whatsoever about how your home is wired.
 
  #18  
Old 03-18-07, 07:30 PM
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John,

I just want to know if the way my home is wire is correct or not, I know very little about electrical work so if someone knows better please tell me so I can get it fixed. Thanks
 
  #19  
Old 03-18-07, 07:46 PM
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I checked all the dimmers they work fine... I called the tech support line they told me that the dimmer system will not work because of the way my light fixture is wired. Not sure if you read the previous post. The fixture has three switches (2-3way and 1-4way), but the last 3way switch in the chain has a red, black and white wire because the light fixture is wire in between the 4way switch and last 3way switch. Its because the last switch has a white wire was the reason the tech gave as to why the dimmers will not work. I'm thinking the same thing your thinking. If the set up works with regular 3way switches why not a 3 way dimmer. Thanks all but I'm just going to put the regular switches back.
 
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Old 03-18-07, 07:52 PM
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I cannot make a judgment from here as to how well your house is wired. But I have seen no cause for concern in this thread.
 
  #21  
Old 03-19-07, 09:55 AM
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If you wired exactly like I told you I beleive it should have worked. The wiring even though the light is in the middle is conencted so that the dimmers are in line and the light is at the end.

The web sites referenced are from the links you provided.
 
  #22  
Old 03-19-07, 10:15 AM
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The wiring diagrams you have referenced all indicate that you can wire this regardless of how the switches are arranged in relation to the light. Check your wiring and try again. This will work.
 
  #23  
Old 03-20-07, 02:46 PM
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Thanks...so nothing wrong with having the light fixture in the middle of the of the switches and having a white common wire on the last thre wire switch??
 
  #24  
Old 03-20-07, 02:50 PM
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Stop using the term white common wire. Those dimmers do not have a common wire. You run a single wire all the way through. I suppose you could call that a common, but I wouldn't. Pay attention to the electrical wiring shown in the diagrams on line and wire as those are shown.
 
  #25  
Old 03-20-07, 05:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Menudo View Post
Thanks...so nothing wrong with having the light fixture in the middle of the of the switches and having a white common wire on the last thre wire switch??
No there is nothing wrong with that. The white wire going to the switch should be colored back with tape or marker to indicate it is a hot wire
 
  #26  
Old 03-21-07, 12:45 PM
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Thank You

To all… thank you very much… I got it to work. Whoever told me to double check the dimmers was correct. Although the lights came on when the wring was correct which I thought this meant the dimmers where working. However, the controller dimmer wasn’t working. I changed the controller and everything worked perfectly. Not sure what the tech at Lutron was talking about when he told me it wouldn’t work because of how the light was wired. Specifically, Racraft thanks for telling me that it would work, I was ready to give up on this project. I know this was painful for some but the help was greatly appreciated…

Menudo
 
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