3-way light/ single-pole fan

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Old 07-22-06, 05:28 PM
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3-way light/ single-pole fan

I am installing a ceiling fan with a light in new construction. I would like the fan and light switched separately. Furthermore, I would like to switch the light in two places but the fan in only one.
On the fan/light, blue is hot for the light, black is hot for the fan, and white is neutral. (And of course green is ground.) I know how to wire a 3-way switch and a single-pole switch. My problem is that if I do each of those in the normal fashion (switch-switch-light AND switch-fan), I have two separate neutrals needing to go to the same neutral connection on the fan/light. Is that safe? If not, what is the proper way to do this?

Thanks.
 
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Old 07-22-06, 05:59 PM
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You won't have two more neutrals. Neutrals don't come into play with switching. The white wires will become "black" as they enter the ceiling box as part of a switch loop, and should be marked as such. The white and red are usually used as runners on the three way switches, with the real black attached to the black screw, and the other white (now black) will attach to the other screw on the spst switch, thereby breaking the connection.
 
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Old 07-23-06, 04:28 PM
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You don't run two separate 14/2 from the common switch box to the fan. You run a 14/3 fromthe common swithc box to the fan. Then ytou hve two switched lines and neutral.
 
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Old 07-23-06, 06:22 PM
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Chandler,
I hesitate to disagree with you, as I am simply a homeowner and not an electrician. But if I understand the 3-way switch set up, the neutral (white) from the source connects to nothing but other white the entire run to the load. The red wire is the switch wire which will be hot sometimes, depending on the position of the two switches. But the white from the source connects to white between switches which connects to white between second switch and load which ultimately connects to white on the load. Thus, it remains the neutral the entire run.

Joed,
I would like to follow up on your explanation. By "common switch box" you are referring to the box which contains a switch for the fan and a switch for the light, I assume. Please explain which wires connect to which from there.
Thanks.
 
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Old 07-23-06, 07:07 PM
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You can disagree, and I don't get feelings hurt, OK? But on a three way switch set up one wire (usually black) is either line or load (depending on where it is in the scheme), and attached to the black screw on the switch. The red and white wires are runners between the switches, and have nothing to do with a neutral, although there is a neutral in the ceiling box. Flip the switch up and you energize the red wire. Flip it down and you energize the white one (which is really black). The only thing you do with a switch is break the hot wire. There is no neutral in a switch set up.
For the single location switch, if you run a cable to the switch, both wires in the cable are assumed to be black and are marked as such.
Now, I am assuming, also the power originates in the ceiling box, and you will be switching the fan and light separately.
 
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Old 07-23-06, 07:57 PM
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Chandler,
I see now the difference between what we were talking about. I am assuming power to the switch (switch-switch-light), and I see that you are talking about power to the load. I found a nice web site that explains both of our sequences (and many others) very well:
http://www.indepthinfo.com/3-way-swi...xplained.shtml
So in some 3-way switch set ups, there is a neutral the whole way; and in others, there is not.
 
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Old 07-24-06, 07:41 AM
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By common switch box I mean the one that a switch for the fan and a switch for the light.
I am also assuming that you are using the same circuit to run both of these units. You should be.

You didn't say where the power come in. That would help to make the explanation clearer.
At the common switch box you have a switch hot for each device. If the power comes in here you also have a neutral wire. Use a 14/3 and use the black and red for the two switched hots and the white for the common neutral to the fan/light.
 
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Old 07-25-06, 04:43 AM
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Thanks for your help, guys. I think this, combined with a few other web sites, has me straightened out now.
 
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