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Old 05-02-2008, 08:29 AM   #1
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Need wiring help


Hello all.

I need some electrical wiring help. I am hoping this will be very simple for somebody that actually knows something about wiring.

The light in my hall is controlled by 2 switches (one on either end of the hall). I am trying to replace these 2 switches. Not knowing anything about wiring, I made sure to put the wires on the new switches exactly how they came off the old switches. This strategy did not work. I have since since tried multiple combinations to no avail.


I do not have any testing equipment. Can anyone give me any idea how to wire this?

The pics are the left and right side of the switch. The other end of the hall has the exact same switch.

Help!



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Old 05-02-2008, 09:05 AM   #2
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Need wiring help


Do you have a meter to measure voltage and continuity. If you do I can help you.
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Old 05-02-2008, 11:44 AM   #3
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Need wiring help


It looks as if the 2 blacks are your travelers which go on the gold screws and the white goes on the black screw. Not sure what the other end of the hall looks like but if its the same set up then do the same. Let me know how this goes.
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Old 05-02-2008, 12:44 PM   #4
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Need wiring help


Swap one of the blacks with the white. If that doesn't do it, swap the two blacks next. Your white and black from one cable are travelers between the switches and the other black is the switched or power wire depending on which switch you are working with. Here is a diagram as to how it works.

http://www.thecircuitdetective.com/3and4wyinfo.htm

Scroll down to the first picture. This is what you are dealing with. A voltmeter would make it easy, but by trial and error you can get it to work. Just remember, the black and white, in one of the cables connected to the switch, are most likely the travelers. The other cable contains the common (black) to the switch, and the neutral (white) not connected to either switch.

Come back if you need more help. We can solve this. Be careful not to get a shock. Don't mess with any white wires which are not connected to the switch's.
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Old 05-02-2008, 01:50 PM   #5
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Need wiring help


good point jrclen about using the black/white from one cable as travelers. If that's the case he should have a simple fix. Personally, if I have a different color wire and 2 like colored wires I prefer to use the different as a feed or leg and the 2 same colored as travelers. Just my preference seems easier to determine which one is the common especially if someone comes in behind me.
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Old 05-02-2008, 01:53 PM   #6
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Need wiring help


Look at your old switches. See if one of the screws is black or marked common. Put the wire that was on the black screw on the black screw of the new switch. This is the common wire and the only one of the three that matters. The black screw might not be in the same postion on the new switches as the old switches.
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