3 Way Switch Wiring Variations

 How to Wire Three Way Switches and 3-Way Dimmer Switches

3 Way Dimmer Switch Wiring Variations
Electrical Question: I am wiring a circuit using 3 way dimmer switches.
The power goes to the first switch, then to a number of cans in the ceiling, then to the second switch.
I pulled 12/3 as I would with a single fixture, but am confused as to how I wire the multiple fixtures, since there is not a solid traveler from the powered switch to the remote switch.
Help!

Background: Mark, a Homeowner from West Caldwell, NJ

Thanks for your electrical question Mark.

How to Wire Three Way Switches and Dimmer Switches

Mark, you just explained the problem – the way that you have wired does not provide the necessary travelers between the 3 way switches.
Sure, you can run the travelers through the light fixtures, but this is not the ideal way.

Vital Components of Three Way Switch Wiring

• The Source of power or Power In.
• Power Out to the light fixture.
• A connecting cable between the first three way switch and the second three way switch.
• The number of wires in the connecting cable will depend on where the Power out wire is located, which may be at either three way switch, or up in the light fixture junction box.
• NOTE: Three way switches do not need a “neutral”, however the “White Wire” of the cable is typically used for switching power and should be identified with black electrical tape.

DETAILED INSTRUCTIONS

How to Wire 3-Way Dimmer Switches

3 Way Switch Wiring Explained
3 Way Switch Wiring Diagrams

3 Way Switch Diagram
In response to the requests for this information, I have developed a comprehensive,step-by-step guide designed to walk you through the identification and wiring of your 3-way switches.

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Complete Guide to Home Electrical Wiring

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Includes:
Wiring GFCI Outlets
Wiring Home Electric Circuits
120 Volt and 240 Volt Outlet Circuits
Wiring Light Switches
Wiring 3-Wire and 4-Wire Electric Range
Wiring 3-Wire and 4-Wire Dryer Cord and Dryer Outlet
How to Troubleshoot and Repair Electrical Wiring
Wiring Methods for Upgrading Electrical Wiring
NEC Codes for Home Electrical Wiring
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