3 way switch question


  #1  
Old 10-23-14, 06:44 PM
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3 way switch question

I wonder why someone would have planned this layout or is this an error.

A ceiling fixture is operated by 2 switches. If switch #1 is up then flipping switch #2 up can turn the light on. But if switch #1 is down, then switch #2 cannot turn the light on, whether flipped up or down. If switch #2 is up, then flipping switch #1 up will turn on the light; but if switch #2 is down, then flipping switch #1 up cannot turn the light on. In other words, switch #1 seems to just operate as a shut off for the circuit that runs to switch #2. To me, this would appear to be an error. These switches are only three steps apart. Why have switch #1 if its only function is to render #2 ineffective?

Question 2: I would like to have this operate so that either switch can turn the fixture on or off. When I open up the boxes, what should I be looking for, to determine what I have here and what would be needed to make it so that either switch can turn the fixture on or off?

Thanks, Gary
 
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Old 10-23-14, 06:52 PM
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Is there both a two conductor cable (white and black) and a 3-conductor cable (white black red) in both switch boxes or just one box with two cables and one box with just a 3-conduvtor cable?
 
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Old 10-23-14, 07:04 PM
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one box with two cables and one box with just a 3-conduvtor cable
 
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Old 10-23-14, 08:27 PM
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You probably have a common and traveler swapped. The common on the 3-way switch is the odd colored screw, usually dark gray.

Tell us all the connections in each box.
 
 

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