We have a 3-way switch in the garage that I would like to upgrade to a Lutron Maestro 3-way occupancy sensor. I have tried (and failed) to do so twice now... and I'm pretty handy. I'm starting to think I have some sort of "uncommon" 3-way wiring.

Is there such a thing? How would I account for it in the Maestro re-wire?


  • Switch 1: Standard 3-way... to become the Lutron Maestro
  • Switch 2: Standard 3-way
  • Load: Three overhead light fixtures (two of them are 4-foot florescent fixtures, one of them is a dual-bulb incandescent fixture).

Switch 1:

  • White traveler (gold screw)
  • Black traveler (gold screw)
  • Black hot wire (VERIFIED with non-contact voltage tester) (black screw)
  • Bare copper ground

Switch 2:

  • Red traveler (gold screw)
  • White traveler (gold screw)
  • Black (black screw)
  • Bare copper ground

Here's what I have done so far...

  1. Tagged the "black screw" wire on both sides
  2. Removed the old switches
  3. S1: Lutron with common-->black, white traveler-->blue, black traveler-->black, ground-->ground
  4. S2: Standard with red traveler-->pole 1, (common + white traveler + yellow jumper)-->pole 2, ground-->ground
  5. Turned the power one... S1 (Maestro) was dead but S2 was working the lights correctly
  6. Per instructions, tried switching the travelers on S1 (Maestro) but that resulted in a dead S1 and a dead S2 with the lights stuck off
  7. For giggles, then tried switching the travelers on S2, but that resulted in dead S1 and a dead S2 with the lights stuck on

I've tried this twice now, thinking maybe I had a bum switch the first time. At this point, I'm convinced there is some funny business going on with the overhead lights that results in a non-standard 3 way... if such a thing even exists.

  • How were the wires connected to the original switches?
    – Tester101
    Dec 7, 2015 at 21:40
  • Have you opened the light fixtures, to get a better idea of the wiring? Also, drawing a diagram will help you visualize the circuit.
    – Tester101
    Dec 7, 2015 at 21:43
  • 1
    You said on one switch you have black and a white travelers and on the other you have red and white travelers. Where does the red wire come from? Is there a four way switch elsewhere?
    – ArchonOSX
    Dec 7, 2015 at 23:40
  • 1
    Can you get us photos of the inisdes of the boxes? (There are non-standard 3-way setups, but we'll need to see photos in order to tell what's going on, and it's very important that we do figure out precisely what's happening here, lest you get zapped trying to change a lightbulb.) Dec 8, 2015 at 0:40
  • 1
    @skylarsutton Photos are usually quite helpful. Sometimes we spot things that the average DIYer might miss.
    – Tester101
    Dec 8, 2015 at 1:43

1 Answer 1


I may have missed something in your question, but aren't you going to need a neutral for the Maestro switch? Check out Wiring Diagram 8 here:


Lutron Maestro Wiring Diagram 8

  • That's not the type of 3way I have. So maybe I do have an uncommon setup. Your diagram shows one switch with only 2 wires, I have 3 wires on both switches. Dec 7, 2015 at 22:26
  • @skylarsutton - The diagrams in this answer are not done by the poster. They came from the Maestro data sheet linked in the answer. You should be aware that there are many models of Maestro switch configurations and each will use one of the many wiring diagrams in the in the data sheet. So several things to realize...comprehend what model of switch you have...the wiring diagrams in the data sheet show working configurations of installed Maestro switches - not how your existing switches are wired...Maestro switches do not use traveller wires in the same manner as conventional three way switches
    – Michael Karas
    Dec 8, 2015 at 11:39
  • @Michael Karas is right but it's a moot point, you're missing a neutral, you won't be able to correct that no matter what wire you connect to what terminal. Dec 8, 2015 at 12:31

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