How To Look At A House
McGarry and Madsen's home inspection blog for buyers of
site-built, mobile/manufactured and modular homes
What is a three-way switch?
Tuesday, September 18, 2018
Most people are already familiar with three-way switches, they just don’t know what they are called. The paired switches at the top and bottom of a run of stairs, or opposite ends of a long hallway, that control the same light are three-way switches. Unlike a standard switch, where the up position is “on” and the bottom is “off,” three-way switches simply toggle between on and off at each switch throw from either end.
A three-way switched light requires an extra wire in the circuit, called a “traveler,” that enables both switches to function together. Occasionally we see three-way switch circuits that have been wired incorrectly, with the result that one of the switches only functions when the other one is set at one of its two positions.
Also, see our blog post How does a three-way switch work? for a complete explanation of how it functions.
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Here’s links to a collection of our other blog posts about ELECTRICAL WIRING:
of Blog Posts
Top 5 results given instantly.
Click on magnifying glass
for all search results.
Buying a home in North/Central Florida? for a team inspection by two FL-licensed contractors and inspectors. Over 8,500 inspections completed in 20+ years. In a hurry? We will get it done for you.