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I have two sets of three way switches. Two of the three way switches run to the same box. It appears that the power source is coming into the box to power both three way switches, but I can't seem to get the power to power both switches without having the lights always stay on or somehow not being able to power both. I have wired one switch in and I had it wired around to power both sets of lights. I have thought that I might need a four way switch, but I'm not sure.

  • i am sure that there is a simpler way to say this, so that it is actually clear what you mean but I can't seem to get the power to power both switches without having the lights always stay on or somehow not being able to power both ..... you also forgot to ask a question – jsotola Apr 4 '18 at 0:44
  • I don't believe you need a 4-way switch. The line hot (black) goes to the common of each of the two switches (two pigtails, one to each switch, and the line hot are in one wire nut). The line neutral (white) connects to the two neutrals (three white neutrals in one wire nut). The red and the black in the two 12-3 or 14-3 cables are the travelers which go to the other two contacts on each switch. – Jim Stewart Apr 4 '18 at 1:15
  • Can you post photos of the insides of all boxes involved? – ThreePhaseEel Apr 4 '18 at 11:36
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There are really only two possible scenarios (with minor variations):

Power to a switch box:

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Power to light box:

enter image description here

If you have one of these and still can't make it work, update your question with some useful detail.

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Harper's yellow tape is here to rescue you.

All these horrible wiring diagrams are spaghetti. Red here black there AARGH!

3-way circuits are actually pretty simple. It's just they use 4 functions of wire (aside from ground), so color code them with electrical tape and life is better.

Harper's law of marking wires: mark both ends at the same time!

  • neutral (white)
  • always hot (black)
  • switched hot (red)
  • 2 travelers (yellow) they do the same thing and are interchangeable.

Wire one at a time.

First wire neutral through from the power source to the lamp. Done. It must use the native white wire.

Second wire always-hot from the power source to one of the switches to its black screw. Use black.

Third wire switched-hot from the other 3-way switch's blsck terminal, to the lamp. Use red and remark any wires that aren't natively red.

You now have left: 2 brass screws in each 3-way and 2 wires in the same cable. These are travelers. Mark them both yellow (really) and attach them to the brass screws.

Or mark them blue or green or whatever color you have. The point is mark them both the same.

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