Need help installing 3-way light switch

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  #1  
Old 12-06-17, 02:39 PM
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Need help installing 3-way light switch

Hi.

Our kitchen has two light switches for the overhead lights. If you use one of them to turn the lights off you need to use the same one to turn them back on.

I purchased two three-way switches to hopefully fix this.

I just pulled one of the old dimmer switches out but it has a green ground and two black wires going into it. Which wires to I connect where on my new three-way switches? I have attached pictures. Thank you!
 
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  #2  
Old 12-06-17, 04:12 PM
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That dimmer cannot be used for 3 way circuit that is why you had problem. There are dimmers that are designed for 3 way circuit if you want to continue using the dimmer.
If you want to go with just 2 3 way switches, you may do so as well.

In order to install 3 way switches, the wiring has to be done to allow it and I assume it is since you are able to control light from both placed.
There are more than 1 way to wire 3 way switches, so in order to install 3 way switches, you have to figure out how your light and switches are wired first.
Check following link and find how your light is wired. Then wire switches accordingly.
https://www.easy-do-it-yourself-home...g-diagram.html
 
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Old 12-06-17, 04:30 PM
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To operate both lights from either of two 3 way switches, the 2 lights will have to be rewired in parallel so both lights have the same power and neutral wires and the two 3 way switches wiil have to be connected with a 3 wire cable . Your current lights could have same common and power (via single pole switches ) or be wired with separate common and power (via single pole switches). Good luck.
 
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Old 12-06-17, 05:19 PM
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Very carefully pull that switch out a little further and shoot another picture. If you look into that box at the wiring you will see a single wire capped off. What color is it ?

Go to the other switch..... carefully pull it out (without unwiring it) and tells us the three colors on the switch and what color is on the dark/black screw. A picture of that would be ok too.
 
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Old 12-06-17, 09:53 PM
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I will pull everything out tomorrow and take some better pictures. Too dark now. Looks like a rats nest inside there.

I purchased non-dimmable three-way switches this time. They are kitchen lights so I don't think they need a dimmer. It will be great if I can get this fix. It's such a pain having to always figure out which switch was last used. Thank you
 
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Old 12-06-17, 11:07 PM
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Might even be able to save pictures.

When working with 3w switches always ID and mark the common wire. The others don't make a difference.

When you look at the second switch..... note the common wire on the dark screw. The other two wires are the travelers. The travelers are usually the same color at both ends.


Using my crystal ball......
My guess is you'll find a black as common on the second switch and red and black as travelers.
At the first switch.... the white wire nut on the black wire to the dimmer is common. The other black dimmer wire is the traveler black and single red wire is capped in the box which is the second traveler.
 
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Old 12-07-17, 11:53 AM
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I attached new pictures. Pictures labeled #1 are the dimmer switch and #2 are the regular switch across the room. Guessing this is original wiring since paint is all over it. Let me know if I need to scrap some paint off the wires and reshoot. Thanks!
 
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Old 12-07-17, 12:45 PM
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Refer to my reply in post 6 as that is exactly what you have and need to do.
 
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Old 12-07-17, 03:01 PM
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Did as you said and it works! Super easy. Thank you!
 
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Old 12-07-17, 03:06 PM
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Well done. You're welcome.
 
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