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Adding a Switch + Single Outlet to Existing 3 way + Light.

Adding a Switch + Single Outlet to Existing 3 way + Light.


  #1  
Old 01-24-14, 09:12 PM
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Adding a Switch + Single Outlet to Existing 3 way + Light.

Hello all,

I am looking to add a single outlet controlled by a switch (this will be controlling rope light along crown molding), to an in place 3 way switch set up that controllers a dining room chandelier.

Taking out the two switches and peaking behind them leads me to believe this is the current set up:

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Firstly, does this seem correct?

Secondly, I have read many threads on this forum about adding another switch/outlet to the non powered side (the right side in my picture), and for the most part this seems impossible. The new addition would have to be on the left side where the power is coming in, correct?

I mean, of course I could add a switch to the right side, but I would have to run a new wire over there, and in a finished room, im not sure if it's worth the work, so I may deal with being slightly inconvienced to walk over to the other side of the room to turn the light on.

In any case, is there an scenario where it is possible to get constant power on to the right side by just rewiring the current configuartion some how? I stumbled upon this yahoo thread, and it seems it may be possible?

Add full time hot outlet to 3 way switch circuit? - Yahoo Answers
"I would replace the double-throw in the first box with a regular single throw for the light, fan, what have you. Using the red wire on that switch for your device, wire nut the remaining black to the supply black in the first box for the outlet you are installing in the second box. Now at the second box wire nut that red to supply your light to the black that feeds it from the old Common terminal of the old three-way switch and use the remaining black that was supplying one of the L terminals, now will be hot full time from the first box, to supply the terminals of the outlet going in the second box."

Being a newcomer to this, it confuses me. What is your take?

Thirdly, if it's not possible to get a constant hot on the right side, I'll go ahead and plan on doing it on the left where the power is coming up. The outlet is to be controlled by the switch.

My thought on how this is to be done is as follows:

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Am I correct with my diagram? I know I may have wires going incorrectly to one side or the other, and maybe the top pole vs the bottom pole (if so, please feel free to correct me), but is the general configuration correct?

Any research I did only had two outlet, with a 3 wire with one being always hot and one controlled by the switch, so this is really a best guess based off of how one may run electric from a single switch to a light.

Any help / guidance would be appreciated.

Thank you.
 
  #2  
Old 01-25-14, 04:56 AM
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Welcome to the forums! Assuming the small box at the bottom of the diagram is your power source, your solution will work.
 
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Old 01-25-14, 05:22 AM
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You could re-arrange the wiring to get constant hot on the right for your new receptacle but only by losing the 3 way function of the existing light.

Because 3 way switches vary, it is not permissible to talk about "left side" or "top pole" when referring to their terminals. You must identify the "common" terminal which is usually stained darker or has a "C" engraved next to it on the switch body. For the other two terminals, referred to as traveler terminals, it doesn't matter in which order you use them.

The diagram below shows wiring the new receptacle in on the right and also making the light non-3-way. The existing switch on the right was taken to control the receptacle. The red circles point out some of the changes from the original diagram and do not stand for additional junction boxes. In the actual project, omit what are shown as loose ends in the diagram.
 
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Last edited by AllanJ; 01-25-14 at 06:04 AM.
  #4  
Old 01-25-14, 06:51 AM
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AllanJ, I apologize using bad terminology, you are correct in your diagram showing where the common poles are. Also, thank you for taking the time to rewire something that could enable me to use a switch on the right side, but basically it means I would lose the 3way functionality of the switches to my chandelier, correct? If thats the only way, I suppose I will just put the switch on the left side instead. Perhaps if i'm lucky with the ceiling, I may run a new 3 wire over to have a new three way circuit that controles the rope light.


Chandler, thank you! While my assumptions appear to be correct in how to wire a new addition, is that the best way, are there any other ways, etc, that I should be looking at? I just want to make sure I am doing it right, and the best way possible.

Numerous other diagrams all show using 3 wire to wire a switch to a two outlet, so I was worried that two wire wasnt possible. But since i'm only using a single outlet, theres only 3 poles anyway. Any other outlet i've seen uses 2 wire as well, im not sure why I saw so many 3 wire diagrams. But in any case, just rambling. If I were to ever add a double outlet, it wouldnt be a problem in this 2 wire configuration correct? Thats basically how every other double outlet i've seen set up as well.


Any other opinions or insight from anywhere else?

Thank you.
 
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Old 01-25-14, 07:09 AM
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The main thing you need to remember is a receptacle will need a hot and neutral. Note in none of the three way switches do you have a neutral.

Where you see multiple hot wires to receptacles, it is most likely a split...top hot, bottom switched, which is not what you are describing that you want.
 
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Old 01-25-14, 08:07 AM
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Correct. I will just stick with my original plan then!
Thanks!
 
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Old 01-25-14, 09:05 PM
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Thanks again guys.
I went ahead and did it all today, and everything worked as planned.
 
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Old 01-26-14, 04:47 AM
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Glad it worked out for you. Hope we were of some help. Thanks for letting us know. Welcome, anytime.
 
 

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