Rewiring a Light Switch that Feeds Another Light Switch
Chadwick in Petaluma, California asks: I replaced the switch with a new switch, now the pantry light works, but the range light fan doesn’t.
Light Switch Wiring
Electrical Question: I replaced the switch with a new switch, now the pantry light works, but the range light fan doesn’t.
I have a pantry light wired to a switch in which the toggle broke off. Upon removing it I discovered it’s a 3-way switch. However, it’s not paired with another 3-way switch.
Turns out since it’s such a small house, the original owners or builder, wired the above-the-stove range light/fan to the switch for a power source. The switch only works the light. The fan/light above the stove has it’s own switch. So I replaced the switch with a new 3-way switch last night.
However, the pantry light works like a charm, but now the range light/fan doesn’t. I have the black wire from the pantry light connected to the “hot” black terminal and the other two connected to the traveler terminals.
Where did I go wrong? Thank you in advance!
This electrical wiring question came from Chadwick, a Handyman in Petaluma, California, United States.
Thanks for your electrical wiring question Chadwick.
How to Change the Wiring of a Light Switch
Application: Change the Wiring a Light Switch.
Skill Level: Intermediate to Advanced – Best performed by a Licensed Electrical Contractor, or Certified Electrician.
Electrical Tools Required: Basic Electricians Pouch Hand Tools, a Voltage Tester, and appropriate Safety Gear.
Estimated Time: Depends on the personal level experience, ability to work with tools, install electrical circuit wiring, and the available access to the project area.
Electrical Safety: Identify the electrical power source to the Switch, turn it OFF and Tag with a Note before working with the electrical wiring.
Electrical Wiring Parts and Materials: Electrical parts and materials for the Switch should be approved for the specific project and compliant with local and national electrical codes.
Electrical Codes and Inspections: Installing or changing home electrical wiring should be done according to local and national electrical codes as adopted in Petaluma, California. A permit and inspections may also be required.
Wiring a Light Switch that Feeds to Another Light Switch
This electrical wiring project is about How to Change the Wiring of a Light Switch in the Pantry of a Duplex.
NOTE: This question mentions the use of a three way switch, however for this project, a three way switch is not needed, and is not necessary.
How to Change the Wiring to a Switch
- Hi Chadwick, Great Question! Before we go into making any changes, make sure the switch for the range light is operational while the pantry light is off. If the range light is still not working, then lets proceed to below.
- From what you have described, and from what I see on your diagram, this is how I would wire this: Connect all the white (neutral) wires together with one wire nut connector, the red size wire connector should work for this. Connect the black wire of the power source to the black wire of the range light, and add attach an additional short black wire to this group which will connect to the power terminal of the switch. Next, attach the black wire from the pantry light to one of the light switch traveler terminals. NOTE: Depending on the traveler terminal connections, the switch may turn off the pantry light while in the Up or the Down position, and if you wish to change this either rotate the switch position, or change the connection to the other traveler terminal.
- If you wish, the three way switch may be replaced with a standard single pole switch, and this will prevent some confusion.
- This wiring configuration will place power to the range light, which will be operational from the range light switch, which is how it is normally wired.
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