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Old 12-16-2012, 04:53 PM   #1
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4-way switches and 3-way in same box

I have a 3-gang pvc box with 2-3way switches and 1-4 way switch in the box
When I do may make what is an eazy way to label which line goes to which fixture ?
Is it permissible to put the feed line wire in the ceiling fixture and not in the switch box?


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Old 12-16-2012, 05:25 PM   #2
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You can make up labels using strips of masking tape.

Strips cut from self stick labels can be used also but you would need to wrap transparent tape around them since they often become unstuck and fall to the bottom of the box after a few months.

Yes you can run the power to the light firxture first and then run a cable to the switch. That is occasionally more complicated because the 2011 National Electric Code needs a neutral in the switch box for such purposes as substituting a motion detector at a later date.

In the past, it was not unusual for the "second" or "third" switch for a 3 way or 4 way setup to be combined with others in the same box with one cable for each switch coming into the box from the respective 3 way or 4 way setup (two cables for a 4 way switch). This usually avoided having too many wires entering the box (box fill issues). One more cable with hot and neutral can usually be added as needed without causing box fill issues.

Three way switch setups also introduce other idiosyncrasies with the neutral-in-the-box requirement. To satisfy today's code, only one neutral needs to enter the box except it may not be used to power a motion detector for a different light fixture than the setup its cable came in from. And sometimes we provide a neutral in the box (and it is code compliant) but there is no raw hot (unswitched hot) in the box because only the 3 way travelers might be in the cable.


The good conscientious technician or serviceperson will carry extra oils and lubricants in case the new pump did not come with oil or the oil was accidentally spilled, so the service call can be completed without an extra visit.

Last edited by AllanJ; 12-16-2012 at 06:02 PM.
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