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The Basic 3-Way Switch Wiring Diagram

This is the most common, and the easiest wiring diagram to follow of any of the wiring diagrams for a 3-way switch circuit.  This wire diagram shows the wiring for source power into the first three way switch, then 3-wire cable to the next 3 way light switch, and then on to the light or light fixtures.

The 3-way circuit is a very common system found within most residential installations.

3-ways are used any time that you want two switches to operate one light (or lights).

The best example of this would be at either end of a long hallway, or at the top and bottom of a stairwell.

(For complete instructions on wiring a basic 3-way switch, see our ‘Wiring a 3-Way Switch’ article. Click here to access …

Watch a Video Explaining 3-Way Switches

Confused by the 3-way switch?  Terry Peterman, the ‘Internet Electrician’ provides a visual explanation of 3-way switches in this short, informative video.  Click here to view.

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The Basics of Household Wiring DVD

"If you're looking for a good reference to help you understand simple home wiring, I personally recommend 'The Basics of Household Wiring' DVD".

Terry Peterman, the Internet Electrician
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