Problem with New Replacement Light Switch


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Old 04-06-21, 02:11 PM
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Problem with New Replacement Light Switch

In my home, we have a light switch for a chandelier at the bottom of the stairs, another light switch that controls it on the second level, and another switch that can also control it on the third level. So, three switches that can turn it on or off. Recently, the one on the mid level was damaged, so I just replaced it with a 4 way switch. At first, everything seemed to be fine. After the installation, I hit the on/off switch and the lights turned on/off. But then, I went to the switch on the ground floor and it wouldn't turn on. That is until I turned the one on the mid level back on. You see, it's like the one on the mid level is determining whether the other two switches can be turned on/off. For example, if the mid level switch is turned on, then I can turn it off on the first floor or the third floor. However, if it's turned off, then the other two won't work. Previously, I could turn them on/off from any one of them.
 

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04-07-21, 02:25 AM
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.

Also, does this new 4 way switch have on the switch itself "On" and "Off" on it? Some people in error do attempt to install a 2 pole switch instead of a 4way since it has the same number of screws.

A 4 way should not have that on it.

Also just because this switch is in the middle as your eyes see it does not mean it was wired in the middle of the 2 three way switches.

As requested a picture of the old switch and the new switch. Didn't you take pictures or make a drawing of the old switch installation prior to replacement to use as a guide?
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Old 04-06-21, 02:15 PM
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double posted.............
 
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Old 04-06-21, 02:19 PM
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You miswired the 4-way switch. Swap the positions of the two wires on one side only. That should fix the problem.
 
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Old 04-06-21, 03:18 PM
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Well, I tried swapping the wires. Unfortunately, it had the same results. Then I put both of the red wires on the same side, and still got the same results. What am I doing wrong?
 
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Old 04-06-21, 03:53 PM
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Show us the old switch and the new switch.
How many wires(not counting ground) were on the switch?
 
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Old 04-06-21, 04:00 PM
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See post #8 in This thread for explanation of how 4-way circuit works.
 
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Old 04-06-21, 04:10 PM
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Four way switches are connected in one of two possible ways.......
 
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Old 04-07-21, 02:25 AM
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.

Also, does this new 4 way switch have on the switch itself "On" and "Off" on it? Some people in error do attempt to install a 2 pole switch instead of a 4way since it has the same number of screws.

A 4 way should not have that on it.

Also just because this switch is in the middle as your eyes see it does not mean it was wired in the middle of the 2 three way switches.

As requested a picture of the old switch and the new switch. Didn't you take pictures or make a drawing of the old switch installation prior to replacement to use as a guide?
.
 
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Old 04-07-21, 03:13 PM
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The old one had a black screw in the upper left and bottom right and the red wires were attached to them.
My new 4 way switch has two black screws on the right side of it, so I attached the red wires to that and the white wires on the brass screws.

I've tried so many combinations, red on black, white on black, red on white and another on black etc. Even though, I knew that they were the wrong combinations, I kept on trying and I kep on getting the same results

PS: I've attached photos of the previous 4 ways switch. My brother was in a fit of rage and punched it. When I removed it from the wall, it just fell apart.

PPS: The new 4 way switch model number is: Leviton 5604-2I



 
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Old 04-07-21, 04:26 PM
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A 4W switch must be wired between the two end 3W switches.

I've changed my diagram to reflect your traveler colors.
It's possible you have the travelers in the wrong place at the 3W switches.
Red and white must be on the gold screws.

 
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Old 04-07-21, 06:03 PM
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Thanks PJmax, I'll take a look at the 3 way switch. By the way, does it matter that the 3 way switches are about 30 years old. What I'm saying is that, is this brand new 4 way switch not "recognizing" the 3 way switches because they're so old?
 
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Old 04-07-21, 08:22 PM
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Age is of no concern. The only important thing with a three way switch is that the dark/black (common) screw be identified. The other two terminals are travelers and have no connection polarity.
 
 

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