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Old 06-05-2011, 02:50 PM   #1
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4way switch question


Hi all im new to this site and new to electrical. Here's my question. I have 3 switches and 2 lights with fans. I want Switch 1(power source comes here) to turn on/off lights and fan, while switch 2 turns on/off lights, and switch 3 turns on/off fans... possible? I would appreciate any and all thoughts, thanks
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Old 06-05-2011, 07:39 PM   #2
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4way switch question


Using basic 3-way switches, switch 1 could control the lights or the fan, but not both, by going to either sw 2 or sw 3 in your proposed scenario. A 4-way switch wouldn’t do any good.

You could use a ‘stacked’ 3-way switch in position one. It takes the amount of space as a standard 3-way, but has 2 independent 3-way switches on it. Then you would have a 3-way circuit to switch 2, and another 3-way circuit to switch 3. All wiring switch to switch, and switch to fans (and fan to fan if applicable) would have to be 3 wire (commonly called 14/3 (w/ground) or 12/3 (w/ground), etc, depending on the circuit size.

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Old 06-05-2011, 09:23 PM   #3
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4way switch question


Note that you do not want a double (double pole) 3 way switch with just one handle. It will work as a 3 way switch but is not desirable here .

Depending on the settings of the other switches at position 2 a single handled switch at position 1 could turn the fan off and the light on, or if you flipped it the other way it will turn the light off and the fan on. Not what you really want to accomplish.

If you want 3 way for lights and 3 way for fan then you need two switches (or one 3 way switch unit with two switches and two handles) at each position. Correction, a light switch and a fan switch don't both have to be in the exact same place.
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Old 06-05-2011, 09:38 PM   #4
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I was thinking a stacked 3-way/3-way

Leviton 5643 for example. One half and sw 2 for the lights, other half and sw3 for the fans.
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Old 06-06-2011, 08:42 PM   #5
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ahh i see what u mean SD515 with the stacked 3 way switch... yeah that would work... i hooked it up today and it did what allanj said... switch 1 would turn on/off switch 2 and 3 depending if they were in the the on/off position... hope that makes sense... thanks for replying guys
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