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Old 03-19-2011, 09:32 PM   #1
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3 way / 4 way switch help


I have a hallway with 3 lights on the circuit and 3 switches. 2 are 3-way switches on either side and a 4-way switch in the middle. I have replaced all three switches and can't figure out what to do next. Either a new switch is bad or the wiring is screwed up is my best guess.

I took multimeter readings on various combinations and only 1 worked with the lights on.

Can you figure out what is going on?
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Old 03-19-2011, 10:21 PM   #2
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3 way / 4 way switch help


Can you put the old switches back and make it work? If you can then do it and replace the switches one a t time testing each one.
If you can't then tell us the cables in each box and how they are connected to the switch and each other. Tell us about all the wires except the grounds.
Make sure you know which terminal is the common terminal. They are not always in the same position between different brands of switches.

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Old 03-20-2011, 02:35 PM   #3
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3 way / 4 way switch help


SOME of your readings are bogus --> meaning that you are using a digital meter with a high impedance input. The readings you are reporting are measuring induction voltage, since the wires show some voltage, but no load is applied. This explains why some readings show "118" at all the terminals with the light not working.

Try using a solenoid tester, or even a light bulb in a pigtail for your readings:



The left-side 3-way may be mis-wired, as well as the 4-way.
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Old 03-20-2011, 02:48 PM   #4
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3 way / 4 way switch help


Try swapping the black wires on the left-side 3-way switch. The light appears to be connected to the black wire, and not the common terminal.

Get that working first, then let's deal with the 4-way.
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Old 03-20-2011, 03:07 PM   #5
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3 way / 4 way switch help


I made some notes to your diagram, hopefully you can make them out:
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Old 03-20-2011, 06:23 PM   #6
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3 way / 4 way switch help


I am with KBsparky however when you replace the switches can you tell us which one is the incomming power source you should able indentify the numbers of conductors in that switch box the incomming power should have netural wirenutted alone and one hot conductuctor should be on the common screw the follow the travellers colours to next swtich.

By the way the four way switch can play trick depending on what model it is some will go side by side or top to bottom depending the arrangement and few case you may end up got a double pole switch as well.

once you find where is the incomming power then the rest will go pretty quickly with it.

Merci.
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Old 03-20-2011, 07:25 PM   #7
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3 way / 4 way switch help


According to those diagrams, the incoming power is on the common terminal on the right-hand switch.
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Old 03-20-2011, 07:47 PM   #8
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3 way / 4 way switch help


Ok then the OP will have to follow the colour combation of traveller conductor to make sure they are correct all the way thru.

The key item is find the common conductor. after that it will go quick.

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