I am setting up low voltage 12v landscape lights in my backyard using one transformer with have to runs/branches - one for two lights and other to operate tow small pond pumps. I have no room for two transformers, so all have to come from one. However, I don't want the ponds branch to be running all the time - hence wanting to place a toggle switch, that will turn on the pumps only when I need. The other branch runs in auto (with light sensor)

How do I set up the wiring?

  • branch 1 - only lights to run in auto mode
  • branch 2 - pond pump to run on demand only( each pump has their wire run and spliced together at transformer
  • both branches to run from one transformer (running at less than 80% capacity)

do I:

  • connect branch 1 directly to transformer
  • connect toggle switch to spliced branch 2 and then piggy tail to transformer to be spliced together with branch 1
  • Have you considered a timer for the pond pump? – Tester101 Aug 21 '14 at 15:48
  • not really - the transformer will run on it's on timer - actually with the light sensor in dusk-2-dawn mode. However, I want to switch on the pond pump/fountain only when I am around. Would it be easy if I hook up a double switch one to each branch)? Can a three-way be done with 2-wire cable? – Phil Aug 21 '14 at 16:26
  • If the transformer only gets power when the dusk-2-dawn sensor is closed (ON). You won't be able to turn the pump on, unless the sensor is closed (ON). If you want to control the lights and pump independently, the control circuit has to be after the transformer. – Tester101 Aug 21 '14 at 16:38
  • yes I understand that; I would be nearby at night as the whole setup is in my backyard's patio area. Not much of an issue with the sensor. I want the lights on every night, but the fountain pump only to be on, when I am out there relaxing (does annyone makes a sensor for that? just kidding). That's why I am looking to place a switch in the second branch. Now that I am looking at some diagrams, seems that maybe a switch to each branch might be better, as it would allow me more fexibility and options. However, the diagrams I have seen all show a combo of two and three wire circuits.... – Phil Aug 21 '14 at 17:11

It sounds like you have a setup like this.

enter image description here

If you want to control the pump independently, simply add a switch between the transformer and the pump.

enter image description here

  • Thanks for the info ahh...I made a(nother) mistake explaining and labeling things wrong. I am calling two branches, but actually it's two circuits branching from the transformer. One cable runs only for the lights; two cables spliced together runs to two pumps. However the transformer has only two connectors (+/-), but per manufacturer specs, one can splice two cables to it. btw the toggle switch has two wires – Phil Aug 21 '14 at 17:43

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