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Discussion Starter #1
I have two ceiling mounted lights just above the hallway upstairs. The lights are controlled by three light switches, one at the bottom of the stairs, one at the top of the stairs, and one at the other end of the hallway. Recently the one switch at the top of the stairs stopped working, yet the other two switches continued to work with no problems. I replaced the one defective switch and the lights worked fine for a few days regardless of which switch you use. Then, suddenly, the switch that I replaced stopped working again, but this time the other two switches also stopped working. Now all three switches will not work. What did I do wrong?
 

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Maybe nothing.
I would replace the switch again.
Was the switch wired with the screws or backstabed in to the switch?

I had to replace a switch that I installed 3 weeks before it went bad.
Sometimes it just happens.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Maybe nothing.
I would replace the switch again.
Was the switch wired with the screws or backstabed in to the switch?

I had to replace a switch that I installed 3 weeks before it went bad.
Sometimes it just happens.
How come all three switches stopped working after I initially replaced the switch?
 

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jschaben
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How come all three switches stopped working after I initially replaced the switch?
Hi Joel - That system would have two 3-way and one 4-way switch. Do you know which one you replaced? I'm guessing it would be the 4-way. How do you know the one you replaced is the one that is bad now, since none work the light? If you replaced the 4-way with a 3-way you would have several combinations where none of the switches would appear to work. I doubt that happened as you have 4 wires to the 4-way and only 3 places to put them on the 3-way(not counting ground).:)
 

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Are you really sure you used the correct type of switch ?
A three way switch set up uses stardard type switchs !
But a four way set up uses a special type switch.
And if you have used the wrong type of switch,
this could lead to problems !
 

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I have two ceiling mounted lights just above the hallway upstairs. The lights are controlled by three light switches, one at the bottom of the stairs, one at the top of the stairs, and one at the other end of the hallway.
When working correctly, are both ligh fixtures controlled by each of the three switches(like diagram A below) or is it a situation where 2 switches control one light and the third switch only controls the other light(like diagram B below)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
All three switches control the light fixture in the hallway. Shortly after I replaced the bad light switch, then all three stopped working.
 

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jschaben
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All three switches control the light fixture in the hallway. Shortly after I replaced the bad light switch, then all three stopped working.
Hi Joel - That really hasn't answered any of the questions, just restated the original post. Was the switch you replaced a 3 way or 4 way? :huh:
 

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All three switches control the light fixture in the hallway.

You said in 1st post "I have two ceiling mounted lights just above the hallway upstairs."

Now you are saying, "All three switches control the light fixture in the hallway." To me the light fixture refers to one light.
 

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jschaben
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One fixture with two bulbs. I honestly don't know if the switch is two or three way.
For the setup you have, you need two 3-way and one 4-way for it to work right. See Hammerlanes post. If you slipped a two way in there it may work until someone turns that switch off, then none will work. Not sure how you would put a 2-way in place of a 4 way, would be two extra wires. If you swapped a 2-way where a 3 way should be, you would have one extra wire. You need to try all combinations of on/off to find out where you are.. lessee, 3 squared thats only 9 combinations.:)
 

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One fixture with two bulbs. I honestly don't know if the switch is two or three way.
Why would you first describe a fixture with two bulbs as

"I have two ceiling mounted lights just above the hallway upstairs"



And as for you honestly not knowing if the switch is two or three way...that is honestly info you will need to provide.

there is only so much a DIY forum can help you with if you are unable to determine at the very least if a switch is a 3-way switch or a 4-way switch.
 
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