wiring 2 way switch

Discussion in 'Electrical Forum discussion & Blog' started by zajnbou, Dec 23, 2007.

  1. zajnbou

    zajnbou New Member

    Messages:
    2
    hi to all ....well i admit it i am newbie

    guys i need to wire a 2 way switch to a lamp near my bed , so that way i can turn it on/off whenever i want , i tried to do it alone but no luck

    (2 wire red / yellow )
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
  2. jwelectric

    jwelectric Electrical Contractor/Instructor

    Messages:
    2,532
    Location:
    North Carolina
    Wrong kind of wire and wrong kind of switch

    What is a "two way switch"?
  3. 480sparky

    480sparky In the Trades

    Messages:
    149
    I agree with the wrong wire. Looks like lo-voltage bell wire to me.
  4. Speedy Petey

    Speedy Petey Licensed Electrical Contractor

    Messages:
    992
    Location:
    NY State, USA
    Zaj, where are you located???
  5. Alectrician

    Alectrician DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    689
    1) Tie the yellows together and put one red on each terminal on the switch.

    or

    2) Tie the reds together and put one yellow on each terminal of the switch.


    It will function either way but you supposed to switch the "hot" conductor.


    PS, if it is line voltage (120/240), it doesn't look very safe.
  6. zajnbou

    zajnbou New Member

    Messages:
    2
    thanks guys for the replies ....

    Code:
     Zaj, where are you located???
    Lebanon

    Code:
    PS, if it is line voltage (120/240), it doesn't look very safe.
    i am under 240 voltage in what way it doesn't seem safe :confused:


    any tips guys
    thanks in advance
  7. Alectrician

    Alectrician DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    689
    There should be 4 terminals on your switch. I don't know how they are identified.

    Two of them will be the lines in (red/yellow) and two will be line out (the other red/yellow) If there are no markings on the switch and you have no continuity tester you will cause a rather large spark and/or a bit of smoke.


    An in line 240V switch wired by an amatuer has many potential problems including the stranded wires not securely terminated under the screws.


    I just saw the newer pic. Is there 3 terminals?
  8. Speedy Petey

    Speedy Petey Licensed Electrical Contractor

    Messages:
    992
    Location:
    NY State, USA
    This would have been a good thing to mention from the start. That didn't look North American to me.

    Sorry, I'm out. I have no clue about your wiring systems or codes.
    I don't feel comfortable giving any advice here.
  9. Mikey

    Mikey Aspiring Old Fart, EE, computer & networking geek

    Messages:
    2,714
    Location:
    Central Florida
    Looks like it might be what we would call a 3-way -- i.e., a SPDT switch. If so, I would guess that Alectrician's advice is correct; use the center terminal on the switch for one connection, and either of the others for the 2nd connection on the switch. I would really recommend testing with an ohmmeter or continuity checker before putting 240V to it. Doesn't look very safe to me, either, but it's a lot safer than a lot of the wiring in several 240V countries I've been in...
  10. BrianJohn

    BrianJohn DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    151
    Location:
    VA
    A 3-way switch has 4 terminals?
  11. construct30

    construct30 New Member

    Messages:
    590
    Location:
    NorthWest PA
    No, a three way switch has three terminals and a ground screw. A four way switch has four terminals and a ground. Two three ways are used when you want two switches and two three ways and one or more four ways are needed when you want three or more switches.

    Wire is wire no matter what part of the world you are in, you should not use low voltage wire on line voltage AC applications.

    They do make low voltage switching systems for line voltage lights. You need special modules to do it. They installed a lot of them in the late 60's early 70's in the US, They became obsolete and hard to find the modules and expensive and I tore a lot of them out and rewired with regular line voltage switching. They are getting popular again. You can run cheaper low voltage wire and run anything from control panels anywhere in the house or now even from you computer. They are still expensive, high maintenance items that are an expensive luxury.

    The naming of switches has to do with how they work inside not what they control, that confuses people.
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2007
  12. Speedy Petey

    Speedy Petey Licensed Electrical Contractor

    Messages:
    992
    Location:
    NY State, USA
    How do you know this is low-voltage wire????
    The OP is in LEBANON!!! The country, NOT Lebanon Pa.
    Have you seen the type of wire they use there? I haven't. Maybe that is standard issue wire. :rolleyes:
  13. construct30

    construct30 New Member

    Messages:
    590
    Location:
    NorthWest PA
    Did you click on the pictures to blow them up, that is some kind of bell or thermostat wire and the switch is some kind of low voltage switch? It is not BX romex or thhn wire so you figure it out. The laws of physics don't change in other countries. My "GUESS" is he has a low voltage switch system or he is using the wrong stuff. As far as what he has to use to meet their standards, who knows. I would rather be overly cautious and have him check it out than hook up something dangerous.

    My guess is he is plugging a cord in and trying to run some sort of switch next to the bed then running to the "LAMP". Check out the surface wiring and the switch. Does He want to turn the lamp off using the lamp's switch and the switch next to the bed or door or what? Does he just want to use that switch only? It is not the best of situations and not up to code in the US.
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2007
  14. BrianJohn

    BrianJohn DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    151
    Location:
    VA
    DUH It is called sarcasm...



  15. construct30

    construct30 New Member

    Messages:
    590
    Location:
    NorthWest PA
    I try sarcasm all the time and get in trouble because of the people that read and think you are serious. Sorry, no offense intended, just instruction for less informed.

    No way of knowing who is serious or not.
  16. 480sparky

    480sparky In the Trades

    Messages:
    149
    Try adding emoticons ;)

    They can make the difference between knowing who is kidding :)D), is mad :)mad:), etc.
  17. Speedy Petey

    Speedy Petey Licensed Electrical Contractor

    Messages:
    992
    Location:
    NY State, USA
    HOW do you know???

    Construct, you are doing a LOT of guessing.

    I'll ask again. Do you know what type of wiring they use in Europe/Asia???
    If not then DON'T guess.

    Who said ANYTHING about BX romex or thhn??? I'm almost sure they don't use that over there, but I won't guess and make replies that may cause more trouble than good.
  18. BrianJohn

    BrianJohn DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    151
    Location:
    VA
    Maybe if my writing skills were better my wit would come across, no problem.

    And once again Sparky is one up on me in knowing how to show possible wit.
  19. construct30

    construct30 New Member

    Messages:
    590
    Location:
    NorthWest PA
    Who's guessing, I took the info given, the wire running on the surface of a wall that looks like some sort of bell wire or zip cord and a plastic switch with no box visible, looks to me to be unsafe in any country or world. Caution dictates to have a local QUALIFIED person look at the situation.

    No I am NOT qualified to wire a house, switch, or dog house in lebanon, the country, but I know from a picture when something looks not so good.

    Speedy Petey, do you know how many fires are caused by unqualified people running extension cords and other type wire on the surface? Me either, but I know most codes say it is a bad idea.

    The ICC has a book called "The INTERNATIONAL Residential Building Code" I guess one could take from that, that electricity acts the same and follows the same natural laws no matter what part of the world you live in.

    In a case like this I wish the original poster would get back and tell us more about it.

    SP are you saying where you live it is OK to run unprotected wire on the surface and install a switch without a box, in a bedroom?

    If you want to do that, they make pre wired lamps with switches on the cord you can plug in, even with wireless remotes.
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2007
  20. Speedy Petey

    Speedy Petey Licensed Electrical Contractor

    Messages:
    992
    Location:
    NY State, USA
    NO. I never even alluded to that in the slightest. Don't put words in my mouth.

    I was merely making the point that you are guessing a quite a lot of things that you are not at all familiar with.
    How do you know that wiring method is not completely typical in Lebanon? Why don't you run over there and show them the "proper" way to wire according to the IBC.

    zajnbou, post back and let us know the story!
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