I have a light fixture with a fan, and two switchboxes with space for two three-way switches each.

I would like each switch box to have two switches, one which operates the fan and the other which operates the light. How can I wire this correctly so that two switches from different boxes operate the light, and the other two switches in different boxes operate the fan?

3-way light switch with fan

1 Answer 1


You can't. You don't have enough conductors between the switches. It takes 2 "hot" traveler wires plus a neutral and a ground to do a single 3-way "traveler" circuit; that's 4 wires total. The neutral and ground can be shared between multiple devices, so to do what you want you need 2 more traveler wires for the other device (fan).

enter image description here

  • From your picture, I can't tell what I need to add for it to work. Can you edit the picture to show what I'm missing?
    – ridthyself
    Commented Nov 18, 2014 at 19:01
  • The only thing missing is the two wires between the two fan switches. The left screw terminal on the bottom right switch should be connected to the left screw terminal on the switch above it. Ditto for the right screw terminals. (This is the same as the light switches.)
    – longneck
    Commented Nov 18, 2014 at 19:21
  • Okay, thanks! I'll need another wire run then, no problem. For future generations, you may want to change your picture so someone doesn't see it and say "This should work, it's from the INTERNET!" without reading the rest of your post...
    – ridthyself
    Commented Nov 18, 2014 at 19:27

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