How Do Two Way Light Switches Work?
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How Does a 3-Way Light Switch Work?
How one can Disconnect a Wire From a Light Switch
A two-way light switch requires a 3-way cable (three wires plus ground–four conductors in all) to be run in order for the light to be switched from any station. Which means that at any time, either switch could also be upside-down in order that it is on in the down position or off in the up position. The wiring in the wall must be re-wired if there is simply two-way cable in existence. Adding another wire to the present installation won’t end up being as easy as pulling through the correct cable to replace the old one.
The third wire provides for the ability to modify from either end of the cable. The switches used in each location have to be two-way switches, providing a choice between two different directions for the electric current. This is the wiring behind the lighting circuits that save time, just like the light switch within the kitchen that switches the light within the garage off, and the identical circuit may be switched off on the front end of the garage, saving you having to return to the kitchen. Another application would be the light on the stairway on different floors, saving you from having to go up or downstairs to get the switch.
How it works
Two of the three wires carry current to either end of the installation. The third provides the redundant switching at either end. The ground wire is common to the whole installation and must not be used for anything aside from grounding at either end. Color-coding is essential. The red wire is the “traveler” wire and is the one which carries the switched current from one switch to the opposite. The two black cables are the “hot” (live) cables that have the facility switched into the circuit and the green cable is the bottom that’s wired between all the devices.
Photo Credit All Images by Steve Tuffill
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