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Thread: 4 way switch

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member eljefedavies's Avatar
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    Default 4 way switch

    I am trying to tie 2 lights together with 3 switches. The first light will have a 3 way switch near it, then a 4 way switch, then a 3 way switch and finally the second light. I know how to wire it by having both lights at the end of all the switches. However due to this being a remodel I am trying to minimize the running of wires. all lights and switches are currently in. 1 switch is controlling 1 light (the first 1 in the above question). The other light is being controlled by 2 3 way switches ( 1 will be changed to a 4 way (#2) and the last 1 will remain a 3 way (#3). Any help especially diagrams would be great. Thanks

  2. #2
    DIY Senior Member thassler's Avatar
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    Default

    The answer would depend upon where the power source starts (switch box or light fixture) and if onward unswitched power is needed and from where. Here's a link to several ways of wiring 4-way switched power:

    (If linking to another site is not allowed, Moderator please remove.)
    http://www.selfhelpandmore.com/switch-outlet/4-way/

    You can also google "4-Way Switch Wiring Options"

    **Not a pro - only a DIY
    Last edited by thassler; 03-16-2009 at 07:50 PM. Reason: Clarify that I'm not a professional electrician.

  3. #3

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    This is one way you could do it...It might not work in your situation....
    Last edited by rgsgww; 03-17-2009 at 09:16 AM. Reason: Code violation
    rgsgww

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    Electrical Contractor/Instructor jwelectric's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by rgsgww View Post
    This is one way you could do it...It might not work in your situation....
    You have a violation of Section 200.7(C)(2) of the NEC.
    There will be a reinspection fee for this.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by jwelectric View Post
    You have a violation of Section 200.7(C)(2) of the NEC.
    There will be a reinspection fee for this.
    My understanding of section 200.7(C)(2) is that the white,gray, or marking of three continuous white stripes on a conductor, the conductor must be used for the supply, not the return.

    Using it as the supply means that it must be permanently marked with paint or other means.

    My image was wrong, so I deleted it.

    This should be right?
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by rgsgww; 03-17-2009 at 09:22 AM.
    rgsgww

  6. #6
    DIY Junior Member eljefedavies's Avatar
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    Default

    This looks like it may work, a few questions though.

    1. Why use the red wire then change to black? isn't the white one normally used then marked with black tape.

    2. Where the 2 wire branches off the feed for the light, it looks like this is spliced in, can this be done? I would be able to do this in the 3 switch box, this would solve my problem. I am trying to avoid running a 2 wire from one light to the next due to ,locations and insulation etc...

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by eljefedavies View Post
    This looks like it may work, a few questions though.

    1. Why use the red wire then change to black? isn't the white one normally used then marked with black tape.

    2. Where the 2 wire branches off the feed for the light, it looks like this is spliced in, can this be done? I would be able to do this in the 3 switch box, this would solve my problem. I am trying to avoid running a 2 wire from one light to the next due to ,locations and insulation etc...
    You can use the red wire or black wire for the returning switched power, not the white. The white can only be marked and used as a supply conductor. As defined in 200.7(C)(2)

    200.7(C)(2)

    Where a cable assembly contains an insulated conductor for single pole, 3-way or 4-way switch loops and the conductor with white or gray insulation or a marking of three continuous white stripes is used for the supply to the switch but not as a return conductor from the switch to the switched outlet. **Or light** In these applications, the conductor with white or gray insulation or with three continuous white stripes shall be permanently re identified to indicate its use by painting or other effective means at its terminations and at each location where the conductor is visible and accessible.

    You can splice two wires from the switch box, but you need to watch box fill.
    What type of lights are these? cans can usually accept two romexes.
    rgsgww

  8. #8
    Electrical Contractor/Instructor jwelectric's Avatar
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    Default

    Maybe this will help

    this one is from the panel or some other place like a rec. or another switch



    This one is if the power is at the light



    if you have any more questions I feel sure someone will answer but I have to go for now

  9. #9
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Default circuits

    ALL light circuits have the switches at one end and the light at the other, regardless of how they are physically located. The two 3-ways could be next to each other and the 4-way at the other end of the house, but they would still have to be daisy chained together as if they were located right next to each other. You have to think about the way the switches have to be wired together, NOT where they are located relative to the light fixture.

  10. #10
    DIY Junior Member eljefedavies's Avatar
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    Default

    Thanks for all the help. I have it all completed, I was just hoping to minimize the pulling of new wires, but it wasn't as hard as I anticipated.

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