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Old 10-27-2009, 10:07 AM   #1
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3 way switches.


I am finishing my basement and am at the electircal stage now. I was wanting to put the main living area on one switch, and a dimmer switch. Do I need to use 12-3 wire and run a 3 way switch, or can I use a one way switch and a dimmer?

When using 3 way switches do I run 12-3 wire to all of the lights that hook into the 3 way switches.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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Old 10-27-2009, 10:30 AM   #2
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The correct wire gauge is based on the circuit size. A 20 amp circuit would require #12, a 15 amp #14 wire.

It sounds like you want both of these switches to operate the same lights. Is this correct?

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Old 10-27-2009, 10:42 AM   #3
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Correct,
I want both switches to operate the same lights.
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Old 10-27-2009, 12:00 PM   #4
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Power into the first switch box, 3 wire from first switch box to second switch box, 2 wire cable to first light, then to each light.
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Old 10-27-2009, 12:29 PM   #5
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For 3 way switching with dimming at both locations you need to buy a 3 way dimmer kit, which has both switches in it (the switches are not physically the same size).
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Old 10-27-2009, 12:58 PM   #6
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So I only need 12-3 to run from switch to switch, and 12-2 from light to light?

On this dimmer kit, I am only going to have on dimmer switch. At the bottom of my stairs I will have a regular 3 way switch and then the dimmer will be in the family room, both controlling the same lights.
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Old 10-27-2009, 01:00 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbfan View Post
Power into the first switch box, 3 wire from first switch box to second switch box, 2 wire cable to first light, then to each light.

Do I use 3 wire to power into the first switch box or just from switch to switch? So once I go from switch to switch then I can use 12-2 to go to all of the lights? I just want to make sure I understand.
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Old 10-27-2009, 01:34 PM   #8
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Power 12/2 to switch1, 12/3 from switch1 to switch2, 12/2 from switch2 to light1, 12/2 from light1 to light etc

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