I currently have a 3-Way light setup like the one pictured below but I want to add an additional light to the circuit on the right hand side switch.

enter image description here

I can not add any wires between the two lights as everything is closed up in the wall. Not sure how to go about with the wiring, any help would be appreciated. Thanks.

enter image description here

  • There is no neutral on the right switch so you would need to run a wire from the existing light or the left switch location. – Ed Beal Jan 5 '18 at 18:39
  • The box that the right switch is in is a dual gang with a standard switch going to another set of lights. All of this is on the same breaker. Can I just tap into that neutral wire? – Hartman9 Jan 5 '18 at 19:44
  • Is there actually a neutral in the right hand box or is that just a white wire feeding the single pole switch? How many wires are coming into the 2 gang box for the other set of lights? – ArchonOSX Jan 5 '18 at 20:48
  • The dual gang box has a 14-2 power source cable coming in for the single pole switch and 14-2 cable going to said lights. – Hartman9 Jan 5 '18 at 20:54
  • Can you post photos of the insides of the boxes involved? – ThreePhaseEel Jan 5 '18 at 23:11

The right hand side has the 2 travelers and a return this was the old way of wiring a 3 way , the left box the neutral goes to the light. The only legal way would be to tag the existing light or bring the power from the left hand switch. It would not be code compliant to tap another neutral in a separate cable even if on the same circuit. This is based on your drawing.

|improve this answer|||||
  • It looks like I can get a new 14-2 wire into the left box to run to a new light. I assume I would just join the neutrals and pig tail the hot with the top left hot on the switch in the picture? – Hartman9 Jan 6 '18 at 13:47
  • Yes this would work. – Ed Beal Jan 7 '18 at 4:47

As Ed Beal points out, there is no way to wire a new light from the right hand location. If you use the neutral from the right hand location and the get the power from the right hand switch there are two problems:

1) You will create inductive heating of any metal parts on that circuit since the feed power and return power are not in the same cable. This is dangerous and could cause a fire.

2) The right hand box does not have the switched wire that is in the left hand box. It only has the hot feed and the travelers. So, you could only wire the light always hot or miswire it to one of the travelers. So it would always be on or on only when the left hand switch is in one of its two positions.

So, in the right hand box, you could replace the 3-way switch with a duplex switch that has a 3-way and a single pole switch. Rewire the 3-way the same. Then use the extra single pole switch for the new light with power and neutral from the other cable.

Or, you can run som new cable from the light or the right hand box. Wire can usually be fished into walls (look for videos on YouTube) and you don't have to remove any drywall.

|improve this answer|||||

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.