Is there a way to bypass a three-way switch for the next single pole switch in the same circuit to work on a different light?

I have four lights on one circuit with two of them on three-way switches. Only one of the single pole lights work without interference from the three-way switches. The other single pole light can only turn on and off when the three-way switch lights are on. When I opened up the single pole switch box, I find two cables each with a black and white line plus ground wires. After removing the single pole switch in question, only one of the black lines have power AND it only has power when the three-way switch is on. When the three-way switch is off, neither cable has power in the black or white lines.

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    Can you post clear photos of the insides of all boxes involved? Jan 27, 2018 at 2:18

1 Answer 1


A 3 way switch is typically wired with 3 conductors plus ground. Ground and return are never interrupted by the switches. Hot is fed into the first switch which then energizes one or the other of the two remaining wires (travelers). The other switch then determines which traveler is connected to the fixture. If the light is off, the switches are set to different travelers (first switch energizes traveler 1, second connects fixture to traveler 2). Flipping either switch turns the fixture on by setting both switches to the same traveler. Wiring diagram for 3 way switch

You need to pull a constant hot for the standard switch, so you need to source that from either a different line (may have to be same breaker for code) or from the beginning of the 3-way switch setup, before the travelers.

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