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Old 04-22-2009, 01:00 PM   #1
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3 Way switch to outlets


I had a friend try to replace 3 way switches for me and it up!
Any idea how they go back together? The house is old and its hard to tell
what wire is what. One switch is on a 3 switch cover plate and the other
is on a 2 switch plate. I have no idea where the power comes in but I know
the wires run in the attic because the house sits on a concrete pad. Any help
would be great. The 3 ways power 3 outlets if it matters. Thanks

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Old 04-22-2009, 01:24 PM   #2
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3 Way switch to outlets


A tester would be really handy right now.

You only need to identify two wires.

If you take the switches out of the box and describe the wiring we will probably be able to sort it out with a little trial & error.

The 2 gang switch will probably tell the most.


Last edited by 220/221; 04-22-2009 at 01:26 PM.
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Old 04-22-2009, 02:01 PM   #3
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3 Way switch to outlets


Well the 2 gang switch is as follows

(left) switch powers dining light w/dimmer black and white wires
(right) 3 way = looks like white cloth-like insulation,red cloth insulation and black but cant be sure

Last edited by Jarrod; 04-22-2009 at 02:18 PM. Reason: update
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Old 04-22-2009, 02:07 PM   #4
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3 Way switch to outlets


Describe the wiring.

How many cables? How many wires? Where do the wires go?

Is it just two wires to the dining light dimmer?

Are there any wire nut splices in the box?

Help me out here.

Check the other box too.
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Old 04-22-2009, 02:35 PM   #5
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3 Way switch to outlets


2 wires to the dimmer. Black and white both have wire nut connection for the dimmer switch the wires travel up to attic.
3 way has 3 wires black white and red but cant be sure on color because of age, and they go up also

Now the 3 gang:
2 red wires split and at connection a black wire comes off and is attached to all 3 switches
2 white wires split and travel up to attic
2 black wires split and travel up to attic
then 3 wires travel back down 1 red wire connects to switch" front porch light" (and it works)
1 red or black? travels down and connects to another switch" hall light"(and it works)
then 1 white and 1 red come down for the 3 way
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Old 04-22-2009, 02:49 PM   #6
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3 Way switch to outlets


Quote:
2 red wires split and at connection a black wire comes off and is attached to all 3 switches
That black wire is "hot" and goes to the "common" terminal of your 3way switch. The screw is a darker color. The red and white can go in any order.

You are 50% done.

On the other end, the black will be the "common". If you can't tell which is black, try one at a time. It will only take 3 attempts.

Test the switches on/off three times from both locations to make sure it's correct before reinstalling the switches. (on one end, off at the other, on at the first)
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Old 04-22-2009, 03:06 PM   #7
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3 Way switch to outlets


Well it did not seem to work. Would it matter if there illuminated switches or if he changed out the outlets
with new ones? I saw when he tested the outlets that it said correct on the tester. Or should I test things
another way?
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Old 04-22-2009, 03:20 PM   #8
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3 Way switch to outlets


I should probably mention that the outlets that the 3 ways are to control
are on all the time when I turn the power back on.
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Old 04-22-2009, 04:00 PM   #9
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3 Way switch to outlets


Did you replace the recepticals too?

If you did, I am going to kick your ass for not telling me.

If all you did was replace the switches, you are (obviously) doing something wrong.



Quote:
Would it matter if there illuminated switches or if he changed out the outlets


Break off the tab between the brass colored screws on the hot side of the 1/2 switched receps and never come back here.

Last edited by 220/221; 04-22-2009 at 04:05 PM.
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Old 04-22-2009, 04:07 PM   #10
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3 Way switch to outlets


Yes the recepticals and 3 ways are the only things replaced. So should I maybe test
the work and how
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Old 04-22-2009, 04:36 PM   #11
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3 Way switch to outlets


You are dead to me.
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Old 04-22-2009, 11:43 PM   #12
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3 Way switch to outlets


Quote:
Originally Posted by 220/221 View Post
You are dead to me.

Haha.

Jarod, there is a small brass tab on all new standard outlets that allows you to half switch an outlet or supply two circuits to the same outlet. Break the small tab on the hot side of the outlet, this should be the side with the brass colored screws and the two wires connected to it. Probably one wire is red and the other is black. Once you do that, your outlet should be half switched and half hot all the time. This is of course assuming that your outlets were originally half-switched before and that the outlets were re-connected identically (except for removing the tab).
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Old 04-23-2009, 12:55 AM   #13
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3 Way switch to outlets


Quote:
there is a small brass tab on all new standard outlets that allows you to half switch an outlet or supply two circuits to the same outlet. Break the small tab on the hot side of the outlet, this should be the side with the brass colored screws and the two wires connected to it.
Amd never come back here

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