Go Back  DoItYourself.com Community Forums > Electrical, AC & DC. Electronic Equipment and Computers > Electrical - AC & DC
Reload this Page >

Switching timer to single pole switch in 2-switch gang box

Switching timer to single pole switch in 2-switch gang box

Reply

  #1  
Old 10-05-14, 07:58 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Canada
Posts: 7
Switching timer to single pole switch in 2-switch gang box

In my front hallway I had the following in a 2-switch gang box:

1. timer (with manual and automatic features) to outside light with pre-wired blue, black, red, and ground wires attached to the timer.
2. 3-way switch for inside front hallway light (the other 3-way switch for this light is down the hall).

I wanted to remove the old timer box and replace it with a simple 2-way switch for the outside light, while leaving the 3-way switch intact.

Inside the gang box were the following wires (in this order from left to right):

white, black, red, white, black, white, black, white, black

The 4 white wires were already tied off together, capped and pushed to back of the box.

The two far right black wires were twisted together, connected to a lead black wire which is then connected to the top outside screw on the 3-way.

The top screw on the 3-way has a lead wire connected to the red box wire.

The inside (bottom) traveler screw on the 3-way is connected to the 2nd black wire in the box.

I have had trouble wiring up the new 2-way switch so that the outside light toggles on and off. I have tried hooking up the top screw (via a lead wire) to the red box wire, and the bottom screw (via a lead wire) to the remaining black, and vice versa. Both ways the light just remains switched on. And of course, I have a ground wire running to the green screw.

How do I correct this?
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 10-05-14, 08:04 PM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northern NJ - USA
Posts: 46,277
Welcome to the forums.

That would be a single pole switch you were wanting to use.

You had three wires and a ground on the timer. It's unusual to have three colors actually connected to a timer without one of them being white. When you removed the timer... what three colored wires did you have available to connect to coming out of the box ?
 
  #3  
Old 10-05-14, 08:08 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,066
I wanted to remove the old timer box and replace it with a simple 2-way switch
No 2-way switch in Canada. That is what the people in the UK call a 3-way switch. What you mean is just a regular light switch.
The two far right black wires were twisted together, connected to a lead black wire which is then connected to the top outside screw on the 3-way.
3-way switches have no top or bottom or left or right. Do you mean the common, the odd colored screw, usually dark gray?

What wires were connected to the timer you removed? The same go to the new switch unless there was a neutral also. What color wires were there?
 
  #4  
Old 10-05-14, 09:08 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Canada
Posts: 7
The red on the back of the timer was simply capped off. The blue was hooked into the red inside the box. The black on the timer was tied in with second black from the left. I copied that with single pole switch but again, the light wouldn't go off.
 
  #5  
Old 10-05-14, 09:19 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Canada
Posts: 7
The odd coloured screw is tied into the two far right black wires.

The timer had a black, red, blue and green. The green was properly being used as a ground. The red was simply capped off. The blue was tied into the red hot wire and the black was tied into the second black wire from the left. I tried duplicating this with single pole switch but it remained "on"
 
  #6  
Old 10-05-14, 11:45 PM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northern NJ - USA
Posts: 46,277
It's hard for us to understand how the wiring is in the two gang box but if the timer was connected with only two wires and you put those same two wires on a switch....... if the timer worked..... then the switch must also work.

If you changed wiring inside the box then that is a different story.
 
  #7  
Old 10-06-14, 07:47 AM
ray2047's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,066
The blue was tied into the red hot wire
But from what you wrote earlier:
The two far right black wires were twisted together, connected to a lead
the black is hot. The red more likely to the light. So hot black and red from the light to the switch. (Just add a a pigtail to the group of hots and run the pigtail to one side of the switch.)
 
  #8  
Old 10-06-14, 06:13 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Canada
Posts: 7
I haven't changed any wiring inside the box.

I ran a pigtail from the first black (from left) to the bottom screw and ran pigtail from the two tied together blacks to the top screw. This had the light staying on. I removed the pigtail from tied together blacks, and instead attached to the red. Again the light remained on. I can't figure out what wire will work as the interrupt.
 
  #9  
Old 10-06-14, 06:32 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,066
How many 2-conductor cables (white, black) and how many 3-conductor cables (white, black, red)?
 
  #10  
Old 10-06-14, 08:45 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Canada
Posts: 7
There are three 2-conductor cables and one 3-conductor
 
  #11  
Old 10-06-14, 09:32 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,066
Are the whites from each of the cables all connected only to each other?
 
  #12  
Old 10-06-14, 09:40 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Canada
Posts: 7
Yes, the four white are all tied together and capped off, and pushed to the back of the box.
 
  #13  
Old 10-06-14, 10:09 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,066
Yes, the four white are all tied together and capped off
Excellent. Just realized you had answered that. Sorry for asking again.

Okay of the three two conductor cables one goes to the porch light, one is power out to X, and one is power in. The power in is the one that was pigtailed to the common of the 3-way so that black as previously stated is your hot.

Connect one of the other 2-conductor blacks to hot. If the porch light comes on you know that is the porch light black. If the porch light doesn't come on test the other black.

When you have determined which 2-conductor black is the porch light connect it to one side of the switch and a pigtail from the hot to the other side of the switch.
 
  #14  
Old 10-07-14, 09:19 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Canada
Posts: 7
Success! Thanks so much Ray2047. Got the right black wires attached.
 
  #15  
Old 10-07-14, 09:31 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,066
Good to read that it worked. Thanks for letting us know.

Just to let you know you threw me off course when you wrote:
The blue was hooked into the red inside the box.
That caused me to give you the wrong answer the first time. But you got it that's what counts.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes