I think I have my plan but wanted to run it by the smart guys on this forum.

I am looking to remove a 3 way switch as part of a kitchen remodel. Actually 2 of them but the wiring/process should be the same as the wires in the boxes are the same for both.

In the picture attached I will put the "Remove This" box in a wall and tie the appropriate wires together. Hot/hot. Neutral/neutral. Grnd/Grnd. Leave red unattached and cap it. Then cover that box with a wall plate in the new location. I will then replace the switches that go to the lights with a single pole switch and leave red traveler capped here as well. This seems pretty straightforward but wanted to see if I am missing anything.

Thanks for your time!

EDIT: Ok here are a couple of pictures based upon feedback. The first pic is of the 2 gang box has the 2 switches I want to remove and put the reconnected wires in an accessible box in the wall. There are 4 wires coming in.

All of the neutrals are connected so I would leave those.

The black wires from the 14/2 are connected to the black screws on the existing switches. The blacks from the 14/3 in that box are connected as shown. Red traveler is also shown. Hopefully clearly-ish.

The next pics show the other switches that I want to keep. They are not the same as the red traveler & black are swapped.

One comment that I had a further question on was code related to placement of switches. I am not sure of that as I couldn't find a definitive answer as to whether removing these 2 switches is doomed from the start. That final picture is a general of my kitchen. 20' x 12'. Is there a portion of the code that designates distance between switches? etc?? I'm kinda stuck on this comment.

thanks again!


switches_remove switch_keep switch_keep2 kitchen

  • This not so smart guy needs to know what the end goal here is ? One switch, for ? Two separate switches, for ?
    – Alaska Man
    May 11, 2020 at 18:24
  • Is one of the switch locations going away, or...? May 11, 2020 at 18:44
  • You wouldn't normally have four cables entering a three-way switch box. You'll want to find out what those are.
    – isherwood
    May 11, 2020 at 18:54
  • Anytime you remove a switch, remember that Building Code requires switches in certain places. Don't blow it, or you'll get flagged on next inspection - probably at sale time. Also you can never bury boxes in walls. They must be accessible 24x7. May 11, 2020 at 20:54
  • Hard to tell, but the splashes of red in bottom pic suggest that the white w/ red here is actually the "red traveller" ; the other white should be black going to the light fixture. Something is amiss May 12, 2020 at 15:39

1 Answer 1


Warning: since you will be splicing wires, you must do so inside the existing junction box containing the switches you want to "remove" aka bypass.

Assuming your diagram is correct and the hot feeds are going into the switches you marked as "remove," then in fact there are two wires going from each of the switches at the edges of your diagram. There should only be one wire leaving those 'edge' switches going to the light, not two,or, at least, one of those wires in the 14/2 bundle is not connected at eiher end. If his is not the case, then your wiring diagram is incorrect and we'll need better information to provide you with the correct course of action.

If my modified description is correct, then all you need to do is to splice (with wire nuts) the hot feed coming into the center box to either of the leads going to the 'edge' switch. Cap off (with wire nuts) the unused lead between switch boxes at both ends.

It occurs to me that the original installer may possibly have continued the white (neutral) runs from the center box, past the edge switches (no connection to the switch itself) and on to the light fixture, providing a somewhat unusual, but valid, neutral path back from the lights. If so, don't change any of the white wire connections.

  • Is it possible that the circuit originates in one of the light fixtures? So the hot goes through the light down to the switch? then the two 14/3s are two switched hots and a neutral that returns back to the original light fixture. I have a diagram, but no idea how to post it.
    – Scott
    May 11, 2020 at 19:42
  • @Scott It's highly unlikely, as that is a very dangerous (and illegal ) situation -- it would mean the light fixture is permanently 'hot." May 12, 2020 at 15:35
  • I do not disagree with very dangerous and illegal, and yes the fixture would be permanently hot. But I have seen it done that way many times. But the OP has put up more info, and my hypothesis is wrong.
    – Scott
    May 13, 2020 at 0:18

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