Neutral wire passing through - for smart switch

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Old 12-22-20, 03:08 PM
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Neutral wire passing through - for smart switch

Hi,

I have been installing smart switches in various locations.

I have a couple cases where there is no neutral and so gave up on those for now.

In one case, there is a neutral wire passing through the switch box - so it does not have a wire nut connection.

I wanted to confirm that I can cut / strip and then attach the white wire from the smart switch. And in addition, there is not a lot of give in the wire, and so it will be a tight squeeze to strip the end of each side and then attach the third wire - any issue with this?

I can attach a picture if that would help.

Thanks!
 
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Old 12-22-20, 04:34 PM
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Technically you can't as any wires need to extend 3" outside of the box. You can extend the wires but may not be approved.
 
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Old 12-22-20, 04:39 PM
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Well that will be a big bummer! It's a 3 way and so I can try the other switch location. The only problem there is that there is another smart switch in that location already so there will not be a lot of room.in the box.

Thanks!
 
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Old 12-22-20, 04:58 PM
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Well that will be a big bummer! It's a 3 way
With a three way switch there are three wires used between switches. Typically red, white and black. Although the wire is white... it is not a neutral. It is a traveler (switched hot) wire.

It's always a big help to see picture of the wiring at the switch boxes.
How-to-insert-pictures.
 
  #5  
Old 12-22-20, 05:46 PM
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With a 3 way switch, you may be able to omit white traveler wire and repurpose it as neutral. Then install a slave smart switch at the remote location.
You will have to figure out how exactly switches are wired.
 
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Old 12-22-20, 06:19 PM
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If it is passing through I will guess that you have a conduit system. There could be enough slack to pull some back from both ends. Or you could pull a new white wire in one direction and cut the other long enough to use.
 
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Old 12-23-20, 12:31 PM
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Thanks for all the additional replies!

I actually had wired the other switch - also 3 way - and there is a neutral plus the 2 travelers.

joed - I might try that as the bathroom switch is right behind this switch and I think a neutral is going there - I will check and see if I can finagle something there!

Thanks!

FYI - here is a picture....

 
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Old 12-23-20, 02:13 PM
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There is a neutral, two travelers(orange) and a common(red).
Always three wires on a standard 3w switch.
With conduit you are lucky as you can add in anything needed.
 
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Old 12-23-20, 02:13 PM
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Are the switch boxes back to back? It looks like they might be. Get a foot of white wire and feed it through.
Leave the other wire alone.
 
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Old 01-04-21, 06:30 AM
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Thank you! [sorry for the delay - been distracted with the holidays]

So basically take a foot of white wire and feed it through the box to the bathroom switch box and if that has a wire nut with the neutrals connected, connect the foot into that box?
 
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Old 01-04-21, 08:08 AM
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Yes that should work.......
 
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Old 01-04-21, 01:42 PM
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Ok thanks! I will give that a try!
 
 

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