3 Way Switch Wiring - Removed a light from Basement


Old 08-30-01, 04:22 PM
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Please help! We had 2 lay-in florescent lights, a recessed light, 1 light switch in the basement, and 1 at the top of the stairs.

My husband disconnected the recessed light without paying any attention to the how the connections were made. We are not replacing the recessed light.

We have spent hours trying to get the switches to "talk" to the lights but nothing we've tried works. Right now, the lights come on, but only if we operate it at the circuit breaker.

It appears that the first light is the start of the chain - then the second light - then the downstairs switch - then the switch at the top of the stairs. I'm basing this on the wiring in the switches and we're able to see the wires leading to the switches and lights in the suspended ceiling.

Upstairs Black (Common) to Hot Light
Upstairs White (traveler) to Downstairs Black
Downstairs White to Neutral Light

The upstairs switch has Black (which I think is common), White, and Red wires. The downstairs has Black (pigtailed), Red, and White (which is the common, I think).

There are two other sets of wires - one for the lights and the other is the 2 wire house cable, I guess.

Any suggestions are appreciated.
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Old 08-30-01, 06:39 PM
Join Date: Sep 2000
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This is an easy problem, but only with complete information.

Shut off the breaker. Look in each switch box and each light box again.

Give us a complete inventory of all the wires in each box, one at a time, making very sure we understand exactly which box you're talking about. Be sure to tell us all the wires, whether or not they are attached to the fixture or switch. Don't try to tell us where the wires go to or come from -- that part is speculation and only confuses the issue. Don't make any guesses at all -- just give us the facts.

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