3 way timer switch

Discussion in 'Electrical Forum discussion & Blog' started by lambed3, Aug 5, 2012.

  1. lambed3

    lambed3 New Member

    Jan 3, 2007
    I am trying to add a digital timer switch to a 3 way configuration. I got the switch to work with one issue, it only works if the 1st switch in the circuit is in the on position. Please note that the other switch is a standard on off switch. If I turn the 1st switch off, I cannot turn the lights on from the digital timer. If I have it on, then the timer works perfectly to control the lights. To make matters a little more interesting, I do not have the more common configuration for 3 way switches. I have the configuration in the attached diagram where one switch flows through the second junction box to the lights. The digital timer is in the #2 position in the diagram below.

    Can anyone help me to get this working correctly? Do I just need a second digital switch or am I SOL to get the timer to work with this setup?

  2. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Sep 2, 2004
    Retired Systems engineer for defense industry.
    New England
    All switches in the circuit must be designed for 3-way circuitry - you can't use a simple on/off switch in a 3-way circuit. The timer you have may or may not be able to work in a 3-way circuit. Without knowing what you have, there's no way to tell you how to make it work.
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  4. ActionDave

    ActionDave Electrician

    Feb 4, 2009
    If your wiring at the matches the illustration a digital timer may not work since there is no neutral at either switch location.
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