3 way switch

Old 03-01-02, 09:10 PM
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Question 3 way switch

I would like to be able to turn on and off the outside lights on my detached garage from my house. the garage is about 100 feet from the house. I dont know if this will matter but the switch that controlls the lights is a 3 way already. can i just run a wire under ground to the switch or do i have to rewire the 3 way switch in the garage also?
Old 03-02-02, 10:40 AM
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Dry Side of Washington State
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By adding a third switch it will change from a 3-way to a 4-way switch arrangement. Go to Lowe's or Home Depot and buy a basic home wiring book that details a 4-way switch circuit. You could try an internet search by typing the key words "four-way switch". Some websites may have an illustration of the circuit. Good luck.
Old 03-02-02, 11:02 AM
Join Date: Dec 2001
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Go to the site homewiring.tripod.con and see there diagrams on 4 way switching
Old 03-02-02, 12:13 PM
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You have a lot of work involved in running your feeders underground from your home to your garage.

There is an option that is new that you may want to check into. It is called smart switching. You can install smart switches in the garage and in the two other switch locations that are existing. All you have to do is install a power cable from the switch to the nearest power source such as a receptacle as long as both buildings are on the same utility transformer or use the same meter base for power to both buildings. You would then install a small receiver in the cone of the light fixture that will recognize the RF signal sent on the house wiring telling that relay to turn on and off your light.

The smart switches are more expensive but if you compared to the labor and wiring cost to get to the garage you could eliminate that wiring. Smart switches send RF signals on the wires like a radio wave that is received like the radio does by the relay that does the switch on and off inside the light box.

A second option is to go to Radio Shack and research into a plug in switch system that will do the same thing bought as a plugg in unit that you plug into a receptacle in the house and a receptacle in the detached garage. Again these two building must be served by the same transformer or the same meterbase.

Let us know what you find.

Good Luck


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