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3-Way Switch Wiring Diagram Variation #6

3 Way Switch Wiring Diagram

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  • Ttsdanbrook

    Excellent illustration. Exactly what I needed.

  • Djaques129

    very, very good illustration. Precise, clear. Color coded, too for better visual

  • Hammerhead

    This is exactly the diagram that I was looking for.  Thanks for the clear, most helpful illustration that I have seen!

  • Dougwin

    Is this the diagram you would use to wire a 3-way switch with a pilot light?

  • Mjaggies

    Fantastic illustration. It couldn’t be any more clear.

  • Checktherules

    Not legal in Canada

    • CLUE

      why isn’t this legal in canada, please explain why?

      • Ben Aberle

        It is legal in Canada. Checktherules is mistaken.

  • Badjeepr

    Again  with the same violation, cant use white as a traveler!

  • Domlei001

    Why can’t I use 12/2 and 12/3 to wire the lights to a 20 amp 125 volt 3 way switch?

  • Bscott

    The only thing that I don’t like about this is that the common pole on the 3 way isn’t identified. In order to make mine work with this diagram I had to flip flop the main power wire with the red wire on my switch.  The same with the second switch… change the position of the black and red wires.  Still saved me a lot of time.  Just had to trouble shoot with the volt meter.

  • Bdruf44

    So what would change if i wanted to add a third or fourth light in line?

  • Adacus1

    Southwire who own the Romex tradename also make a 14-4, Black, White, Red, Blue NM-B cable. Although not easy to come by it simplifies the wiring between the lighting boxes and removes the extra (second) ground wire you have from running 2 x 14-2. Use Blue and Red as the travellers and black as the switched live and White as neutral

  • Ty3340

    the white wire can be used as a traveler

  • Adacus1

    TY3340 if you are using 14-4 you have to use the white as neutral and not as a traveller. One other issue with 14-4 is to be very careful about box fill as you need 22cu in box minimum when there is a 14-4 in and out 4 current carrying in plus 4 out plus 2 light plus ground totals 11 x 2 or 22 cu In. There is another alternative which is to run a separate 14-3 the full length from switch to switch and then use 14-2 from the power in switch and link from switch to light to light. Easier to get hold of the cable and in fact works out cheaper.

  • Ben Aberle

    You absolutely can use a white as a traveler. In fact, in many many 3 way switch configurations the white is used as a traveler. Also in dead-end single pole switch configurations the white is the unswitched hot. And you don’t have to tape the white black if it is obvious from the splicing/terminal connections that the white is not the identified conductor. Canadian Electrical Code rule # 4-034 (2) stipulates:
    “Where armoured cable, aluminum-sheathed cable, or non-metallic-sheathed cable containing an identified conductor is used for single-pole, 3-way or 4-way switch loops, it shall not be necessary to render the identified conductor permanently unidentified at the switch if the connections are made so that an unidentified conductor is the return conductor from the switch to the outlet”.
    For those unfamiliar with this terminology, the identified conductor is what many (incorrectly) refer to as the “neutral”. The spirit of this rule is to prevent having a light fixture connected to two white wires.

  • bew36

    whu cant i use 14-3 between the lights insteed of 2 runs of 14-2

  • Tulmaster

    So, in effect does the traveler need to be connected to the same terminal on each switch? I have it wired as described above, but while both switches work and will turn lights on and off, when one switch turns it of the other will not turn it on until the other switch turns it on first. I’m thinking the the two travelers need to be switch but not sure.

  • Tip Per

    does this conection diagram control each lamp seperatly (0% light, 50% light, 100% light)?
    if yes:
    does it work on AC LED lamps the same way?

  • Debra Gauger

    i have 3 way switches 1 on each end of a run,but i fed the middle light fixture how do i feed the other 2 lights,one is on each side of thje center feed

  • Debra Gauger

    can anyone help with three way14-3?


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