Three way switch, second light, please help!!!

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Old 05-16-11, 08:37 PM
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Three way switch, second light, please help!!!

Good evening everyone, nice to meet you

Diagram of my existing wires | Flickr - Photo Sharing!


The picture above is a homemade drawing of how the wiring currently exists in the home that I am remodeling, with placement of the light I would like to add in.

I have an existing light and three way switch setup in the stairs going to the second floor of my home. Unfortunately, the stairway has a very high ceiling and it stays pretty dark at the bottom of the stairs. I would like to add in a second light at the bottom of the stairs to fix that problem. The diagrams I have looked at online generally seem to show a power-light-light-switch-switch setup or a power-switch-switch-light-light setup. I guess my setup looks like itll have to be power-light-switch-light-switch.

Is there any way to do this with the wiring that I have existing in my home, without tearing out walls to add in additional wiring?

Any help that you guys can give me would be greatly appreciated. Thank you so much!
 
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Old 05-16-11, 08:51 PM
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Sorry but no. You need to run a cable from the existing light to the new light. IS there any way to fish a cable from the existing light?

Just wondering, what kind of wiring do you have? Cable? Flex? EMT?

BTW - Welcome!
 
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Old 05-17-11, 06:59 AM
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There really isn't a way to fish a new line that I can see. The existing wire that runs between the two switches goes through two walls and a 15ft ceiling.

Here's another idea I thought of, any chance of it working?

Diagram of my existing wires | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

I thought of capping off the power lines coming into the light box at the top of the stairs. There is a light switch directly on the other side of the wall from the two-way switch at the top of the stairs. It's in my daughters room, but it wouldn't be too much to run a new power line from it to come into the switch at the top of the stairs. The new layout would be as shown in the picture above.

Any way of making that work? Or am I stuck with the options of no light at the bottom of the stairs or tearing out plasterboard to make it work?

Thank you foir your quick reply by the way!!! I appreciate all help!
 
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Old 05-17-11, 07:55 AM
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The problem with sticking a light in the middle of the run like that is you don't have enough wires. Either you don't have a neutral or you don't have a traveler.

In your 2nd diagram you would need to run a new cable from the switch box you are adding the feed from the bedroom, to the new light.

When it comes to fishing, sometimes you have to think creatively. It might not be as simple as from point A to point B. You might need to go up to the attic, over and drop down to the new light location.
You say you have plaster board. Is that lath and plaster or sheetrock or something else?
 
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Old 05-17-11, 08:15 AM
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Its like old crumbly drywall. I call it plasterboard, but its probably just old drywall. Anytime I try to cut a section of it I end up tearing out and replacing a bunch because it falls apart so bad. (It's an 80 year old shotgun style house)
 
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Old 05-17-11, 11:42 AM
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Shotgun style house? Does that mean you have a crawl space, basement or is the house on piers? Do you have an accessible attic? I know most people "don't want to hire an electrician" but I would be willing to bet that this job could be fished.
 
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Old 05-17-11, 12:38 PM
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Anytime I try to cut a section of it I end up tearing out and replacing a bunch because it falls apart so ba
What are you using to cut it? What is your procedure?
 
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