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3-way switch prob

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Jun 03, 2013, 11:42 AM
3-way switch prob
I have a hallway with two lights (lets call them A and B). At one end of the hallway is a 3way switch (sw1). At the other end is a dual switch (sw2a and sw2b). I'm pretty sure one of the duals is a 3-way switch. Now sw2b turns light B on and off, no mystery there. The issue is with sw1 and sw2a. sw1 will turn light A on and off only if sw2a is in the on position. However if light A is off sw2a will not turn it on. If light A is on sw2b can turn it off but then sw1 has does nothing.

Sw1 has one terminal on its left side and 2 on the right. Sw2 has 2 on the left and 3 on the right. All the terminals have wires connected to them.

Ccan someone walk me through how to troubleshoot what is wrong? Ideally I would like to have both lights on a pair of 3-ways. The hallway is only about 12 feet long and there's no reason to have them on different switches. I would settle for having sw1 and sw2a work as 3-way switches are supposed to.
Jun 03, 2013, 01:39 PM
To get what you want, you need to get rid of that dual switch and use a 3 way switch. The trouble is that you are also going to have to move some of that wiring around. If it was me, I'd open up the drywall and do the wiring to bring it up to two three way switches operating both lights. But I'm good at drywall work, and it would be cheap for me to do.
The first thing to figure out is which wire is bringing in the power -- which might be one of those black wires coming in at the dual switch.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: Re-mdlr,
Jun 04, 2013, 07:04 AM
Unfortunately my walls are concrete so that's not really an option.