> >
>

# Problem with 3 way switch and outdoor lights

#1
07-30-13, 10:35 PM
Member
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: United States
Posts: 3
Problem with 3 way switch and outdoor lights

Ok, guys, just bought a house and replaced some of the lights that didn't work. Here is a run down of what is happening,

I have a 3 way switch in the garage with a motion light on the garage, and i have a 3 way switch in the house with a motion light attached to the house, when i turn the switch on in the garage the motion light only on the garage will work, not on the house, if i turn on the switch in the house it turns the motion light on the house into a strobe light and the garage motion light comes on but is very dim. What is happening here?

#2
07-30-13, 10:46 PM
Member
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 8,470
Welcome to the forums!

It sounds like you're describing a circuit with a pair of 3-way switches that control two outside lights, and that each of those lights also has a built-in motion sensor. Is that correct?

If so, in order to help you troubleshoot the problem we will need to know how this circuit is wired. Tell us where the power come in, the number of cables and the wires in each cable at each of the four boxes, and how each of the wires is connected now. You don't need to take any wire connections apart yet - just tell us what you see.

#3
07-31-13, 12:24 AM
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northern NJ - USA
Posts: 59,108
You have a total of two 3 way switches and 2 motion sensor lights.

It requires extra wiring to be able to have those two different lights at two different locations in the circuit.

Once you tell us what you see maybe we can rectify the situation.

#4
07-31-13, 03:01 AM
Member
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: United States
Posts: 3
The box in the house.

2 black wires and one white wire, a black and a white come out of the same piece of romex which i am guessing is the hot and netural, the other black comes out of a piece of romex by it's self which i am guessing is the common wire.

Light on the house - white and black wire

Switch in the garage - same as house switch.

Light on garage - black and white wire also.

#5
07-31-13, 06:20 AM
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,597
In a correctly wired 3-way circuit when there is cable there is normally at least one 3-conductor cable (red, black, white). You have not mentioned any 3-conductor cable.

3-way switches have two traveler terminals (same color-usually brass) and one common terminal (odd colored-usually dark gray).

The above are very important in your description for us but aren't mentioned. Please try again.

a piece of romex by it's self which i am guessing is the common wire.
Romex is cable not wire. You should not be using just a single wire inside a cable.

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off