Removed 3-way switch, GE smart switch not working

I removed a 3-way switch by jumpering 2 wires together and capping the 3rd. The remaining switched worked normally. When I replaced it with a GE Smart Switch I can’t get it to function. The original switch had 2 wires coming in and two going out, and a ground. I put the wires in the same location on the smart switch as they were on the original switch. Is there a simple solution?

Most smart switches require a neutral wire (including GE smart switches), while regular switches do not.

Take a look at this FAQ:


Yeah what @jhamstead said.

Smart switches do not wire like dumb switches at all. You will have to modify the wiring pattern some.

Thanks, very helpful information you’ve put together! I guess my question is, can I eliminate the other 3-way switch and get the smart switch to function, or is it “looking for” another add on switch that doesn’t exist?

Good question. I wish I had tested it when I put in my GE Smart Switch and the add on. I wonder if the circuit needs the three way switch to complete the circuit. On a side note I do have one GE Smart Dimmer Switch that doesn’t need a neutral wire to function. I read somewhere that “dumb” dimmer switches, even when in the off position, still have a tiny current running through them because they regulate current and not completely turn off the current. I figured this out when installing a non smart motion sensor switch. I thought, “If it’s off, where is it getting it’s power?” In this case smart dimmer switches, like the GE Smart Dimmer Switch, wire like dumb switches and do not need the neutral wire.

Depending on your wiring, you can get rid of a switch and just use one smart switch. You just can’t use a “dumb” 3-way switch wired with a smart switch. In order to use only 1 smart switch you will need to have line, load and neutral in the box you want the smart switch.

@Liquidmachine The GE smart switches that do not require a neutral are no longer manufactured and are not rated for LEDs so I did not mention them. In any case, yes, smart switches without a neutral ‘leak’ power (to keep their radios on) which can cause a faint glow in bulbs without enough resistance. I believe though, the ones that are currently manufactured are better in that department but I’ve never used one.


Thanks for the help, I got it to work! You were right, the neutral was key. There was an extra wire in each direction I had to cap off, but once I connected the line, load, and neutral correctly it worked just fine.

Had nothing but trouble with this dimmer that doesn’t require a neutral.