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I would like to install a lutron caseta smart dimmer switch in a four way switch line that has two 4-way switches and the obvious two three-way switches. I want to put the dimmer in place of one of the two 4-way switches, and I will put remotes in the place of the other three switches. I am not entirely sure how to close the loop to just make a single switch set up. Here are some pictures of the actual switches with which I am working.

https://photos.app.goo.gl/6eq6gpG6uLyXHLnM9

  • I would have thought the dimmer would go to one of the three way switches. You will also need a neutral connection for many types of smart switches. – JACK Sep 29 '19 at 16:29
  • Can you post photos that look into the backs of said switch boxes please? – ThreePhaseEel Sep 29 '19 at 17:22
  • What's the story with the double white wire on the common screw of the 3-way (2nd pic)? Is that double white a pigtail of always-hot, or are you switching neutral? It's illegal/dangerous, but I'm not asking to be a code cop, it's because we'll need to know to allocate wires correctly in the circuit. – Harper - Reinstate Monica Sep 29 '19 at 19:27
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    Thanks everyone for the responses. I ended up cutting all of the wires from all the switches and turning power on then just chased it through the system and got it all wired and working perfectly. – Blair Holmes Sep 30 '19 at 1:13
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    Yeah, I would say don't cut any more wires. Length is precious, and not replaceable except by re-running the wires in the walls. Also be cautious, there are many combinations which "work" but are not safe. – Harper - Reinstate Monica Sep 30 '19 at 1:37
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The pictures that you link to do not provide enough data to be able to give you specific guidance. Basically all that can be seen from those pictures is which switches are 3-way and which are 4-way. Oh and in addition where crappy back-stab connections are used. Additional pictures would clearly show the back inside of the electrical boxes so that the incoming and outgoing cables in each location could be checked to visualize the way the circuits interconnect between the four locations.

I really recommend that you install the actual dimmer at the location of where one of the end point 3-way switches are located. Ideally you will select the location where there is a neutral wire located so that you can use the Caseta dimmer that has the neutral connection. (I know that there are Caseta models that will work without the neutral connection but with the use of the neutral gives you more freedom on the types of lights that you can control).

From your pictures I can infer that your four way switches are using both black and white colored wires to act as travellers. This is a strong indication that there is not a neutral connection run through the 4-way switch box locations. If a neutral was present it would be far more likely that the wire pairs connected to the 4-way switches would be black and red (or some other color that is not white).

The above observation is the reason that you want to study the 3-way switch locations carefully to see which location has a neutral present. If the power feed is coming to this switching circuit from one of the electrical boxes where the lights are located it is possible that neither 3-way switch box will have a neutral.

On the other hand if one of your switch locations is in an electrical box that already has two or three switch units then there is a high degree of possibility that this electrical box has the power and neutral feed coming into that box.

You should not really have to care what location that you place the actual smart switch from a usability perspective. Any of the other locations will have the Pico remotes and once installed and paired with the smart switch they provide the same level of functionality from any one of your current four switch locations.

The Caseta installation instructions will show how they recommend that you bundle the traveler connections in each electrical box to allow bypass across the two 4-way switch locations. I suggest reading through this multiple times to get a good understanding of how this will work. Also if you do not fully understand how conventional 3-way and 4-way switches work in a multi-switch arrangement I would also strongly recommend spending some time researching that subject. It will give you a much better basis to understand the Caseta smart switch installation instructions.

  • I am using a dimmer that doesn't require a neutral. Unfortunately, the locations of the two 3-ways are terrible and I actually probably won't put remotes in there anyway. I need it to be in one of the 4-way locations. I found this resource which almost gets me there, but I'm not sure what to do with the other 4-way youtu.be/xNbc1aqS-H8 – Blair Holmes Sep 29 '19 at 16:39
  • Essentially what I need to do is reduce the 4-way line to a single switch in one of the 4-way locations. – Blair Holmes Sep 29 '19 at 16:44
  • @BlairHolmes - Actually you do not "have" to put the smart switch at the 4-way location. I've added more text to my answer since your comment. – Michael Karas Sep 29 '19 at 16:44
  • I know from a technical perspective I don't, but like I said in my comment, the locations of the 3-ways are not usable for my application and I am going to probably just cover them over. – Blair Holmes Sep 29 '19 at 16:49
  • @BlairHolmes - "Cover them over" as in drywall patching or blank box covers? – Michael Karas Sep 30 '19 at 4:13

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