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My pair of lights and pair of switches was working in my basement stairwell. I'm redoing the wiring because I added more switches but I can't get the stairwell lights working again. The only thing I can control is how the lower switch is wired:

I haven't tried this configuration yet

I haven't tried this configuration yet. Is it the correct way to do this?

UPDATE: Got it working tonight. Here is the corrected diagram:

enter image description here

  • When you say you "added more switches", you are talking about some other unrelated circuit, correct? – Jimmy Fix-it Aug 29 '15 at 18:14
  • Yes, they were added to the box the lower switch is in and just pigtail off the black wire from the breaker. – AndyMcKenna Aug 29 '15 at 19:10
  • Do you know which switch has the power coming from the panel? – WarLoki Aug 30 '15 at 0:21
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@AndyMcKenna No, the way you have the switches wired will not work correctly. If you look at your new switches there should have 3 terminal screws. There should be two copper looking screw(traveler wires), setting across from one another, and one dark screw(power in and power to the fixture) at the bottom of the switch by itself.

Warning: You'll be working around live electrical wires during this procedure. If you don't feel comfortable doing so, please contact a local licensed Electrician.

    For this example I am going to use the wire color you used in your picture.
  • You show the white/neutral wire going straight to the light this is correct. FYI the white/neutral wires could go through the switch boxes so do not mix the wires up.
  • Determine which switch has power coming in from the panel, you can do this with a Non-contact voltage tester or a Voltage Meter. Try to identify the wires as you go with tape or wire numbers.
  • After you have identified the power from the panel turn off the breaker.
  • At Switch #1, where the power comes in from the panel. This is your home-run switch and you terminate the Black wire on the darker screw. This is your power in from the panel. The Red wire terminates to one of copper screw and the White wire terminates on the other copper screw. These wires are your traveler wires, they lead to the other switch.
  • At Switch #2 The Red wire terminates to one of copper screw and the White wire terminates on the other copper screw. The Black wire on the darker screw. This is your power to your fixture.

As for adding switches, unless the power is at the box you want to add to, you will be just adding a switched switch, meaning that until the switch gets power it will not work.

  • You are correct. I was thrown off because my light was going to the same switch as the power while the upper switch was on it's own, only connected to the traveler. Once I realized this wasn't different than if the light went in to the upper box it all clicked. I added the corrected diagram to the question. – AndyMcKenna Aug 30 '15 at 1:43

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