I will try and provide as much information as I can and I apologize if I call something by an inappropriate name - but this is what I have done from my research.

We had a room that had a central light that was was able to be switched on/off at the two entry points to the room. I wanted to add four recessed lights to the room and just leverage the same switches, etc. However, when I went to connect all the wires the LEDs are very dim. I am able to remove the one switch from the circuit and the lights function to their full capacity with the one switch functioning properly. When wired to the other switch (removing the first from the circuit) the lights and dim and the switch that is connected does not work. I have attached some crude drawings in an attempt to show the wiring better as I am not sure how clear my words are. Let me know if I can help to clarify any details.Wiring Diagram

Switch #2 - (left side of diagram)Switch #1 - Top right of diagram

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    Welcome. Please rotate your diagram so we don't all get sore necks.
    – isherwood
    Jun 15, 2020 at 16:06
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    Welcome to Home Improvement! While your diagram is helpful, please edit your post to include some pictures of how the switches are wired (in the 3-way switch config you want them to be in), and how they're wired at at least a couple of the lights (assuming all the lights are wired the same). (In the US, we call a light that can be operated from 2 switches a 3-way switch. I believe in Europe that is more logically called a 2-way switch, since there are only 2 switches...) Then, while you're waiting for an answer, take the tour and read through the help center to make the most of the site.
    – FreeMan
    Jun 15, 2020 at 16:06
  • It's called a three-way switch because there are three possible switch states. :)
    – isherwood
    Jun 15, 2020 at 16:08
  • Dimming lights usually indicates that you have something incorrectly wired in series, reducing voltage to each load. As FreeMan said, we need connection diagrams or photos.
    – isherwood
    Jun 15, 2020 at 16:12
  • @isherwood this is a Kiwi or Aussie, they call it two-way, as do the Brits. Jun 15, 2020 at 16:43

1 Answer 1


This can't work without smart switches

You can't wire 2-way switches with only twin-and-earth, unles you do something totally evil and dangerous. If it ever worked before, it was wired horribly.

You are groping around trying to experiment, which you should not do, but at least you are using the wires properly - reserving green/yellow for ground instead of bootlegging a hot or whatever horrible thing the last guy did.

The runs from lamp to switch need to be replaced with 3-wire + ground (whatever they call that where you are). Then we can use 2 of them as what we call "travelers" and have the third for hot/common.

Your alternative if you can't rewire is to use smart switches, but this will require a module in the first lamp.

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    Thanks for the quick and detailed responses. Here are some images of the switches and how they are wired. To note I did not change anything for how they were wired. And yes, sorry it should be labeled as a 3-way switch, my mistake there.
    – Arodros
    Jun 15, 2020 at 17:09

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