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Thread: Troubleshooting two 3-way switch setups

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    Homeowner Thatguy's Avatar
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    Aug 2008


    Jim Port
    Electrical Contractor
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    [So much for freedom of speech! I guess this comes under freedom of listening or not. . .]

    I found it is much easier to predict the results given the schematic instead of the other way around, but I can't resist a good puzzle.
    Quote Originally Posted by mgabbard View Post
    #1 down, #2 down - lights are on
    #1 up, #2 down - lights are on
    Taking only the case shown above, if you step through on a piece of paper all 3 ways of hooking up the 3 terminals of a working #1 switch to 3 wires and with switch #1 in both positions [6 diagrams in all] I don't see how this outcome is possible unless you have #22 wiring with 3 travelers.

    An "impossible outcome" means that we are assuming something that is not true.
    What's good about these is that we will probably learn something new. Plus, nobody else wants these budget-busters.

    To find out what it is I'd say check #1 switch with an ohmmeter. If it checks good something has changed inside the walls and that's a separate troubleshooting procedure involving a voltmeter and incand. bulbs.

    There are many different wiring diagrams for this, but I can only find two schematics. In any case it's a source in series with a load in series with an SPST switch made up of two 3-way and zero or more 4-way switches.
    Last edited by Thatguy; 11-23-2010 at 04:48 PM.

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