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I am hoping someone can help me. I have a 3 way switch for lights on my stairs and a 3 way switch for lights in the hallway. The way they are currently wired is there is a 2 gang box at bottom of the stairs, power into that box. There are currently 2 3 way switches in that box, one for the stairs, one for the hall. The at each end, the box then runs to the lights. My question; is there any way to put a 4 way switch in the 2 gang box and run all the lights on the same switch, so they all come on and off together?

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    Can you post photos of the wiring in all boxes involved? – ThreePhaseEel Nov 16 '19 at 21:31
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Smart Switches to the Rescue

You might be able to use the existing wiring for 4-way switches. But a simpler solution, and one that does not require any new wiring (just reconfiguration of the existing wires and new switches) is smart switches.

There are many brands and many different types. You will need to do your research carefully as there are different requirements for neutral & ground and possibly other things. But basically, you should be able to:

  • Install a "master" switch where power comes in from the breaker panel (likely the 2-gang box, but not 100% certain without more details)
  • Install "remotes" at the other 2 locations. Depending on the brand/type, the remotes may use AC power themselves or they may be battery powered (with long-lasting batteries).
  • In addition to controlling the lights with the 3 switches, you can also have (if you want) options to control via WiFi or other means.

Make sure to get UL-listed (or similar listing, CE and FCC are not equivalent to UL) devices. Since at a minimum the master switch will be attached directly to 120V (or 240V, depending on your location) power, safety is very important.

  • Given the use of american terminology it's almost certainly 120V – Jasen Nov 19 '19 at 6:34
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you don't have enough conductors in the walls to put in a 4 way switch, because the string of switches needs two travellers between each and its neighbours, and live to one end and the load at the other end.

  • You might be right, but I think it is too early to tell without more information from OP. – manassehkatz-Reinstate Monica Nov 17 '19 at 2:55
  • there is a small probability that there are unused wires present, but the original description seems clear enough to me – Jasen Nov 17 '19 at 3:09

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