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Old 02-12-2013, 02:19 PM   #31
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Need held fixing a 3 way switch wiring mess.


Quote:
Originally Posted by hammerlane View Post
If you have no loose connections then the switch may be defective. When did this issue with the switch begin??
It's always been. I already tried replacing it.

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Old 02-12-2013, 03:15 PM   #32
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Need held fixing a 3 way switch wiring mess.


As wired here, where the pink cable is bringing power to box #1, the 3-way switches should function properly.

If not, then you have mis-identified a wire somewhere.

As a note, this diagram is almost exactly like diagram #3 in post #14 if you eliminate the single pole switch and its wiring.
Attached Thumbnails
Need held fixing a 3 way switch wiring mess.-imagedar.jpg  
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Old 02-12-2013, 04:00 PM   #33
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Need held fixing a 3 way switch wiring mess.


Quote:
Originally Posted by sebrous View Post
In box #1 I have a one pole switch and a three way switch.

In this box i have 3 cables :
14/2 that connect...
12/3 that goes to box #2 where the second 3 way switch is located
12/3 that goes to my light fixture

The power that feed the 3 way setup comes from...
I think you're wrong on just about everything conclusion you've made.

Starting over completely:
In 1989 it would be VERY unusual to feed power to the switch.
In 99% of houses the power for all lightswill START at the light fixture.
I suspect that the regular switch that the 14/2 is on...
is for some other light fixture altogether.
And last... electricians won't often mix up #12 wire with #14 wire on the same circuit.

What you do have:
The 3way lights use one of those 12/3 cables to bring that power down
to the switch box and then bring the switched power back up to the light.

(Why did he use a 3 wire for that when a two wire cable would have been adequate? Who knows... Maybe he only had 3wire on the truck that day? Maybe they wanted the option of adding a fan? ... it doesn't matter at this point.

When you put it all back together again you might notice that he marked one conductor as a spare... which you'll also do.)

The other 12/3 cable goes to/from the other 3way switch.
---
Your job:
Find the OTHER light that the 14/2 is switching.
Confirm which cable in the light fixture is the always hot wire.
Go about wiring it all over again.

Last edited by TarheelTerp; 02-12-2013 at 04:17 PM.
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Old 02-13-2013, 07:38 AM   #34
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Need held fixing a 3 way switch wiring mess.


Quote:
Originally Posted by TarheelTerp View Post
Your job:
Find the OTHER light that the 14/2 is switching.
Confirm which cable in the light fixture is the always hot wire.
Go about wiring it all over again.
The other 14/2 wire in the light fixture is really feeding a series of wall outlet in my living room.

I have corrected my diagram pointing out the hot wire.

Before wiring it all over can you confirm that this diagram should be working.

http://img46.imageshack.us/img46/7624/imagegvk.jpg

Could it be possible that the reason they used a 12/3 cable instead of a 14/2 from the light fixture to box 1 is to get a proper neutral coming back from the single switch in box 1 ?

Last edited by sebrous; 02-13-2013 at 08:12 AM.
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Old 02-13-2013, 08:30 AM   #35
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Need held fixing a 3 way switch wiring mess.


Quote:
Originally Posted by sebrous View Post
The other 14/2 wire in the light fixture is really feeding a series of wall outlet in my living room.
Good. I suspected this.

Before wiring it all over...
Nope. I can't make any sense out of you drawing.

Could it be possible that...
Nope. It's not needed for 3ways to work.
Having a spare conductor in the cable from the light box down to the switch box may later prove to be convenient... but it isn't necessary to be there. Ignore it.
====

Below is a basic 3 way switching diagram without the spare (red) wire:
Attached Thumbnails
Need held fixing a 3 way switch wiring mess.-3wayswitchdiagram2.jpg  

Last edited by TarheelTerp; 02-13-2013 at 08:32 AM.
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Old 02-13-2013, 08:39 AM   #36
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Need held fixing a 3 way switch wiring mess.


Remember though that I have a single switch in box 1 that get is feed from the hot wire coming down from the light fixture. This switch control a serie of outside lights in front of my house. To close that circuit it need a neutral I think this is the reason why they used a 3 wire cable from the light fixture to box #1.

3 wires

Black bring back power from 3 way switch system
Red bring power from light fixture to box 1
White neutral for the single switch.
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Old 02-13-2013, 10:00 AM   #37
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Need held fixing a 3 way switch wiring mess.


I have rewired the hole thing and noticed that the 2 red wires on the 1st switch where switched.

Now everething is working has it should be.

Thank you guys for your help.

Last edited by sebrous; 02-13-2013 at 10:04 AM.
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Old 02-13-2013, 10:14 AM   #38
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Need held fixing a 3 way switch wiring mess.


Quote:
Originally Posted by sebrous View Post
I have rewired the hole thing and noticed that the 2 red wires on the 1st switch where switched.

Now everething is working has it should be.

Thank you guys for your help.

That was the whole issue? The red wires on the 1st switch were not on the correct terminals?

In every drawing I showed the red wire that feeds the light on the common terminal of the 1st switch.

Oh well at least it was a learning experience for you.
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Old 02-13-2013, 10:17 AM   #39
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Need held fixing a 3 way switch wiring mess.


Quote:
Originally Posted by sebrous View Post
Remember though that I have a single switch in box 1 that get is feed...
I don't believe that is correct.

I suspect (assert really) that the 14/2 wire is a switch leg...
for something else entirely and that is fed on another circuit altogether.
It may not be hooked up (yardlight or such)... but it's there.
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Old 02-13-2013, 10:27 AM   #40
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Need held fixing a 3 way switch wiring mess.


Quote:
Originally Posted by sebrous View Post
Remember though that I have a single switch in box 1
that single switch was immaterial to the function of the 3-way switches.
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Old 02-13-2013, 10:29 AM   #41
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Need held fixing a 3 way switch wiring mess.


Quote:
Originally Posted by hammerlane View Post
That was the whole issue? The red wires on the 1st switch were not on the correct terminals?
When I rewired I disconnected everything so afterward I though that the 2 red wire where switch. I just looked at picture I took when I first open the switches and noticed the real issues.

The switches where wired has followed.

http://img502.imageshack.us/img502/8799/imagedrv.jpg
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Old 02-13-2013, 10:32 AM   #42
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Need held fixing a 3 way switch wiring mess.


Quote:
Originally Posted by hammerlane View Post
that single switch was immaterial to the function of the 3-way switches.
I know. I was just stating the purpose of the white wire on the cable that comes from the light fixture.

My guess is that it serve has neutral for the single switch circuit. This is why they used a 3 wire cable instead of a 2 wire.
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Old 02-13-2013, 11:35 AM   #43
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Need held fixing a 3 way switch wiring mess.


Quote:
Originally Posted by sebrous View Post
I was just stating (what I thought was) the purpose of the white wire
on the cable that comes from the light fixture.
My guess is that it serve has neutral for the single switch circuit.
Nope.

Quote:
This is why they used a 3wire cable instead of a 2wire.
Nope. The #12 3wire cable is not associated with the #14 2wire cable.
At all. For any purpose.

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