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Kitchen Light Switches Not Working Properly

My kitchen light can be turned on/off by 2 different switches. It use to work fine. Now, it can be cut off by either switch anytime, but it can only be cut on by the switch that was used to cut it off. Is this faulty switch? Light?


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February 22, 20161 found this helpful

One of your three way switches has gone bad (unless it was replaced with a standard switch?)

The first three way switch will take power and switch it to two "travellers" (type of conductor). One of the travellers will be hot with the switch in one position and the other will be hot with the switch in the other position. If this is not the case, that switch is bad.

The second switch mirrors the first. It takes the two travellers in and feeds one of them to the light, depending on switch position of the second switch. If a traveller is hot on the second switch and flipping the switch won't turn the light on, then the second switch is bad.


An electrician can fix this for you. Since it is one of the switches, rather than troubleshooting, it may be easier to replace both three way switches. They are relatively inexpensive and since both switches are probably the same age .....

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February 22, 20160 found this helpful

Thanks. 2 new switches on the way.

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