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Wiring a 4-Way Switch

The 4-way circuit is used when you want to control the light or lights from three or more locations.  This article and detailed wiring diagram outlines the steps to wiring a typical 4-way switch.

4-Way Switching Circuits

If you understand the logic behind the 3-way circuit, the 4-way will not seem that difficult.

When Do You Need a 4-Way Switch?

The 4-way is used when you want to control the light or lights from two or more locations.

4-Way Switch – NOT To Be Confused With a 2-Pole Switch!

A 4-way switch has four terminals (do not confuse with and purchase a 2-pole switch by mistake).

The 4-way terminals are labeled “In” and “Out” (two of each). The mechanics of this switch are simple, in that they either switch the travellers straight through, or criss-cross them.

To add more than three locations for one set of lights, you would just insert more 4-way switches in between the two 3-ways. The following diagram illustrates the easiest way to connect a 4-way circuit.

NOTE:  The picture is a thumbnail – click on it to enlarge it.

This entry was posted in Indoor Wiring, Indoor Wiring Diagrams and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
  • shakil

    i hav 2 pc 2 way swtich & 2 pc normal stich so how to use that 4 swtiches 4 way swtich connection

  • Randy

    I’m trying to install a more complicated 4 way switch setup than shown here. It has 2 3-way (each end of the circuit) and 2 4-ways in the middle. The power comes in at the 2nd switch and the lights are between the 3rd and 4th switch. Anyone with a schematic that does this?


  • Walt Rivers

    I want to add a switch. I have a 3 way to 3way to fixture. I would like to replace the last 3 way with a 4 way to fixture and add a 3 way. I think I have it but I’d like a diagram to prove it.

  • abid hussain

    please clear 4 way switch dafination

  • Et Diabolus

    This is an excellent article for explaining the design and logic of a 4-way switch. 

    One edit that needs to be made:

    The sentence reading; “The 4-way is used when you want to control the light or lights from two or more locations.”

    Should say; “The 4-way is used when you want to control the light or lights from three or more locations.”

    This is because a 2-way switch is used for a single location, a 3-way switch is used for 2 locations, and a 4-way switch is used for 3+ locations.

    • Internetelectrician

      Et, you are absolutely correct! I will fix that, and thanks for pointing that out!

  • Fohwofasa Money

    hw can i connect d 4 switch

  • Francis Ohwofasa

    what is d name of d 4 way switch, and hw can i connect it?

  • Jessica Patricia

    .. I like this article, on the 4-way switches ..

  • admin

    You are correct! Thank-you for pointing that out. The diagram was re-done by a graphic designer when we up-dated the website and I guess I missed that mistake when proofing the diagrams. I went back to an original so the changes are made. No real danger if it was hooked up this way, it just wouldn’t have worked correctly.


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