HELP - Simple Instruction on hooking up a 3 way light switch?

(Munaf Patel) #1

So my dilema is that I want to replace my existing 3 way switch set up to get it working with my ST Hub. I thought it was as simple as replacing one of my 3 way switches with another “3 way switch” WT00Z-1. Oh no it’s never that easy. Anyway I understand that I need to install WD500Z-1 on one of the switches of the 3 way and then install a WT00Z-1 to the other.

If my what I have said above is correct does anyone have the actual details on how to do this? I need the following instructions:

  1. Does it matter which switch is installed on which position?
  2. Do I install the WD or the WT first (does it even matter)?
  3. Once I install them in the right order, how do I “connect” them so they work together?

Thanks and let me know if I am missing some obvious conceptual ideas here.


To be honest, it sounds like you might need to bring in an electrician. Or if you live near a Home Depot, many have classes in how to wire a three-way set up. They won’t apply directly to networked switches, but you’ll learn a lot about the basics of wiring and the tools you use and since Home Depot does sell the switches the instructor may also be able to help you with that.

Anyway, you got a good start on the basic concept. :sunglasses: You do need to always have the auxiliary that specifically matches the master. Different brands and even models use different methods for communication and so you have to get the ones that match exactly.

Your first goal should be to wire the master. Once you have that working, you can add the auxiliary.

However, before you add the auxiliary you need to know exactly what every wire segment is doing because networked devices are wired differently than the nonnetworked devices they are replacing. Do it wrong, and you can burn out your brand-new switch.

Also, in the US wire colors are not mandated by code and people can and do use any color for any purpose, sometimes just because it’s the end of the day and there’s only one roll of wire left in the toolbox. So you can’t just follow videos on the Internet, either, because while there’s a “recommended” meaning for each wire color, that doesn’t mean that’s how it was done at that particular switch.

If just reading the user guide that came with the device isn’t enough to direct you, it’s time to get some additional help.

Oh, and before you remove the old switch, label all the wires and take photographs including the back of the switch and the exact screw connectors that the wires connect to so you can see exactly which wire goes to which screw. This can save a lot of headaches later.

(Joe) #3

I spent hours figuring out my 3 ways. I brought an electrician and he was lost and he said he would have to bring the smarter one which then they had an emergency and I went at it alone. You have to figure the main one. That is the one that has power from the panel “hot” at all times. The others shouldn’t have any power after you disconnect the switches. Then its a matter of figuring out the load traveler and neutral wire. The master switch must go in the right place. The other will automatically sync with it. That only requires neutral and travel if I am not mistaken. Then pair with your hub after they are working. I learned allot dealing with this. You will need a volt meter to find out which is hot. Like one said take pictures of everything before you disconnect anything and turn power off!!! Disconnect and turn power back on and use the volt meter to find the live wire in one of the two boxes. That is your main. Turn power back off and connect the boxes. Hopefully your travelers will be red and it will be easy but it usually will be on the side by itself.