Baffled by 3-way wiring with GE 45614

(Tom) #1

Hi Everyone,

I’m trying to hook up a GE 3-way switch setup (GE 45614). This kit uses an on-off switch as the master, which requires a neutral wire. I’ve looked everywhere and I can’t find anyone describing a wiring setup similar to mine. Basically it looks like this:

Switch box one:
Two bundles of wires coming in. First bundle (Bundle A) has a Black and a White. Second bundle (Bundle B) has a black, white, and red. They’re wired as so:

Bundle A Black: Switch Common Terminal
Bundle A White: Wire-nut tied to Bundle B Red
Bundle B Black: Switch Traveler Terminal
Bundle B White: Switch Traveler Terminal
Bundle B Red: Wire-nut tied to Bundle A White

Switch box two:
One bundle of wires coming in, a black, white, and red, wired as so:
Black: Switch Traveler Terminal
White: Switch Traveler Terminal
Red: Common Terminal

I’ve omitted the ground wires: they’re also in the boxes and appear to be wired properly.

Any suggestions on how I should be connecting these to the GE 45614 kit?


(Barry) #2

Ignore the way they are wired now (which does NOT sound correct anyway), and just follow the instructions that came with the GE 3-way.

In the Main, Bundle A is your supply (from the breaker panel) and Bundle B is your load (to light and 2nd switch).

Be sure to turn off the breaker first!!!

(Mitch) #3

I’ve used Linears (I think I read somewhere that their rebranded GE’s). I’m using a WD500z-1 as the master and WT 00z-1 as the slave. With these switches the WD500z-1 has 4 wires: ground, neutral, blue and black. The WT00z-1 has ground, neutral and a black wire.

For the Master switch, I tied the line and loads from the wall wiring together into the black wire of the Linear switch. I tied the traveler to the blue wire of the Linear switch.

For the Slave I tied the load wire from the wall to the black wire on the Linear switch and tied the traveler from the wall and the line from the wall together (so they aren’t wired into the slave Linear directly).

(Tom) #4

Thanks for the replies guys. I attempted to do the install to the best of my ability using the guide and the instructions you provided. When I turned on the power, the blue light came on the GE switch, and the overhead light came on (although it was dimmer than usual, which was odd because this is not a dimming switch). When I pushed the switch button on the main switch, it made a click noise and the lights briefly flicked, but both stayed on. I tried this several times with the same result. The remote switch did nothing. It was late and I had no power in any of my bathrooms, so I put the old switches back like they were for the time being.

I found another post that suggested connecting just the main switch first, before worrying about the remote switch (since the main switch can be operated standalone). If I was to do this, would I need to disconnect the remote switch entirely, then just hook up the main switch (sans the traveler)?

(Tom) #5

I’ve played around with this a little more. If I hook up the following to the Z-Wave switch:

Bundle A Black to Line
Bundle A White to Neutral
Ground to Ground

… then I get the same effect. The light fixture lights up (although dimmer than usual) and the light on the Z-Wave switch is dark, except when I push the switch, when I hear a click and it briefly lights up. This… doesn’t seem right…

(B Denton) #6

Your wiring should look kinda like this.

As someone already mentioned, one of the cables with no red wire, is going to be the one from your breaker.
I would think only one switch would be controlled by zwave, and that one will definitely need to be in the box where the power is constantly on.

To me, it sounds like your zwave switch is in the wrong box. Check to see which switch has power when the light is off.

(Tom) #7

Thanks. Unfortunately my wiring doesn’t look like this, one box only has a single 3-wire bundle coming in, and in that diagram each box has two incoming bundles.

After more research, I suspect that the line comes in at the fixture, which means I can’t use the 45614 kit because I don’t have access to a neutral wire in either of the switch boxes. I’m going to try an Aeon Micro Switch wired up at the fixture instead. I’ll try and remember to report back on how that goes.

(Barry) #8

Is it possible that there is a 3rd 3-way switch for this circuit?

(FWIW only, I don’t think the picture supplied by HillBillySUV is correct for the GE/Jasco switches, as the switches themselves REQUIRE the neutral connection as well…IIRC)

(Matt Fink) #9

I had a horrible time with those 3 way switches - 2 locations, one was 3-way, one was 5-way, nothing worked. Not even my electrician could figure it out so I tried this;

Works GREAT! And really easy to install! The big issue with this is if you turn off the switch via smartthings all other switches in the circuit do not work so it’s not perfect if you still want switch control (it is usable) but if it’s automation you want, it works great!

(Coolcatiger) #10


How you used aeon in 3 way setup ? Are you able to operate light from both places ?

(Tom) #11

My suspicions were correct: the line came in at the fixture, meaning no neutrals were being passed to either one of the switches. I was able to get everything up and operational by fitting a an Aeon Micro Switch in at the fixture. Once I was able to trace all the wires, it was fairly simple (although it was a bit of a tight fit) and everything seems to be working. I was able to get it to pair with my Smartthings Hub without any issues.

@coolcatiger, yes, you are able to operate the light from both places, and you can continue to use your original light switches.

@Macadoodle It’s odd that you cannot operate your physical switches after turning off the power to the microswitch via Smartthings. I don’t have this issue. Perhaps our wiring is a little different. Works perfectly for me :smile:

Now I have a different issue – I can’t get the Micro Switch to pair with my GE 45631 wireless keypad controller (which was the whole point of this exercise in the first place) but that’s an issue for another thread :smile: