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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hoping someone can help solve a mystery. I suspect this must be something simple. I converted a single switch (it’s a 3 way light switch) to a double box, adding an outlet. Used the recommended method, adding two pigtail wires to both white and black (didn’t touch the red), then connecting one set back to the switch and one to the new outlet. When breaker was turned on, switch worked and outlet did not. This makes no sense since they were connected to the same set of wires. Checked for loose connections, and even took everything apart and reconnected with same result.

Tested all connections with a meter. Switch had juice, outlet didn’t. Ditto the wires when disconnected. I DID get a reading when tested the hot wire on the switch and the neutral on the outlet.

Any suggestions? Can think of no logical explanation. Amperage on th outlet is correct.

Thanks
 

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retired framer
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I don't think that white is a neutral. You might find it at the other switch or the light fixture.
See the white at the light.


See the white at the first switch
 

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retired framer
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Thanks. So what do I connect to what?
If all you have are the three wires, the white should have been marked black with tape or something and you will not get anything from there. sorry.

You would have to find the neutral and bring your power from the other switch or the light fixture where ever the neutral is.
 

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If the three way switch box in question only has a red, white and black then it can NOT be done. You do not have a neutral wire. Even though you have a white wire it being used a hot wire for the three way switch.
 

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You will not be able to energize a new outlet from your first mentioned 3 way switch. You do not have a constant hot nor a neutral. What colour are the wires at the switch you say is not a3 way?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks everyone for their responses. Sounds like plan A won’t work, however the back of the box is in a utility room and so there are several other lines there that I can tap into (a light (not part of the 3 way switch which goes elsewhere) and a couple of other outlets. It just means running a little more cable.

However one question is, assuming I leave the outlet physically where it is, in a double box next to the switch (which would be on a different circuit), is that kosher from a electrical code point of view? Or would I have to have 2 separate boxes since there are 2 different circuits involved?
 

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retired framer
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59,859 Posts
Thanks everyone for their responses. Sounds like plan A won’t work, however the back of the box is in a utility room and so there are several other lines there that I can tap into (a light (not part of the 3 way switch which goes elsewhere) and a couple of other outlets. It just means running a little more cable.

However one question is, assuming I leave the outlet physically where it is, in a double box next to the switch (which would be on a different circuit), is that kosher from a electrical code point of view? Or would I have to have 2 separate boxes since there are 2 different circuits involved?
I think that is alright but wait for the pros to chime in.
 
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