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Old 07-10-2011, 06:34 PM   #1
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Three way switch-How to insert a fixture+split switches?


I have a current setup that runs source-switch-fixture-switch (3-way circuit, light in the center). Like the diagram below.



What I want to do is add a second fixture between the first switch and the first fixture, and then have them separately controlled by each respective switch that is closest to each fixture.

So the new setup would be source-(switch-new fixture)-(old fixture-switch).

Can this be done, and how would it best be accomplished? I'm new to wiring, so any simplification is appreciated.

Thanks, Brian
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Old 07-10-2011, 10:01 PM   #2
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Three way switch-How to insert a fixture+split switches?


Yes it can be done.

Redo the wiring as follows:

Remove white wires from switches and connect them to each other and to the white wires of the fixtures. only.

Connect all the black wires to each other excepot not to the black wires of the fixtures. At each switch connect the black wire (use a pigtail if more than one black wire is bundled) to the switch (common terminal if you re-use the old switches).

Connect the red wire to the other switch terminal (a traveler terminal if you re-use the old switches). Connect the other end of the red wire to the black wire of the nearest fixture.

It is possible this won't work for you specifically, because the 3 conductor wire between switch 1 and the original fixture is too short to stretch over to the new fixture. In this case you would need to run a new 2 conductor cable from the first switch to the new fixture and leave the 3 conductor wire in place. Here connect the new cable black and not a red wire to that switch. Unused wire ends should be taped over and not snipped off.
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Last edited by AllanJ; 07-10-2011 at 10:35 PM.
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Old 07-10-2011, 11:28 PM   #3
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Three way switch-How to insert a fixture+split switches?


The original cable is definitely not long enough to reach to the new fixture. I'm not sure I understand exactly how another cable integrates into the circuit if I were to leave the original 14/3 in place?
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Old 07-11-2011, 07:02 AM   #4
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Three way switch-How to insert a fixture+split switches?


AllanJ,

I looked at you sketch and said to my sell:" How in hell will that work?. Then I went back and reread the original post about using the switches as single pole and the light went off in my head. It sure will work but it would confuse the hell out of me if I was trying to trouble shoot. I think I would replace the 3 way switches with single pole just to clear the confusion factor.
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Old 07-11-2011, 07:30 AM   #5
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Three way switch-How to insert a fixture+split switches?


Diagram with new 14-2 cable from the first switch for the new light
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Old 07-23-2011, 07:55 PM   #6
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Three way switch-How to insert a fixture+split switches?


Well, I got up in the attic, and my wiring is a little different than I originally thought! My actual setup looks like the diagram below. Can anyone help accomplish the original objective of inserting a fixture so that the switch in the picture on the left controls the original fixture and the switch on the right controls a new inserted fixture? Any help is appreciated...I am now confused once again.

Thanks, Brian
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Old 07-23-2011, 08:44 PM   #7
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Three way switch-How to insert a fixture+split switches?


If you have source->switch->switch->light, you’ll have to run a new 2 wire w/ground cable from the new light to the second switch, or replace the current 2 wire from the 2nd switch to the old light with a 3 wire cable, and then a 2 wire from the old light to the new light.
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Old 07-23-2011, 09:00 PM   #8
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Three way switch-How to insert a fixture+split switches?


Right now, a 2 wire branches off of the first switch to the fixture. The switches are connected to each other by a 3 wire.

So I want the first switch to control only the new fixture and the second switch to control only the existing fixture.

Does that description you gave essentially have the setup backwards? I can't visualize it...

Brian
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Old 07-23-2011, 09:20 PM   #9
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Three way switch-How to insert a fixture+split switches?


Now I’m confused. Your picture from a couple weeks ago showed source->sw1->light->sw2 Your picture today shows source->sw1->sw2->light. Is the source in sw1 with a 2 wire to light and a 3 wire to sw2? So sw1 box has 3 cables in it?
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Old 07-23-2011, 09:29 PM   #10
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Three way switch-How to insert a fixture+split switches?


Suggested wiring with First switch controlling only the original light and the Second switch controlling the new light
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Old 07-23-2011, 09:35 PM   #11
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Three way switch-How to insert a fixture+split switches?


Attached here is a drawing to the best of my ability showing the current setup. Hopefully this clarifies the problem.
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Old 07-23-2011, 09:58 PM   #12
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Three way switch-How to insert a fixture+split switches?


So, it looks like the diagram by AllanJ would work in this scenario...the switch on the left in your drawing would be my switch 2 and the switch on the right in your drawing would be my switch 1. Does that sound correct?

Thanks again for the help, this is the first time I have really tried to reroute wiring.

Brian
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Old 07-24-2011, 12:20 AM   #13
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Three way switch-How to insert a fixture+split switches?


Just wanted to follow up that the last diagram posted worked perfectly and I consider you both to be geniuses. Thank you!

Brian

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