Discuss 2-way switch... my head hurts in the Electrical Forum area at ElectriciansForums.net

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Mjward

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Don't know if it's because its Friday or a long week but my brains have turned to mush trying to figure this out.

In a nutshell: I have a downstairs hallway pendant with a 2-way switch. Fantastic. Well, no, both switches are on the ground floor. I want to add a switch to the top of the stairs (and at the same time add a second light fitting for stair lights). One of the switches is currently 2-gang (for hallway and landing) and that is the location I want to keep (and will make 3-gang to accommodate stair lights). The other switch is currently 3-gang (for hallway and 2 study lights) and I want to make it 2-gang for just the study lights and relocate the second hallway switch to the top of the stairs.

The problem: From what I can tell, it is the second switch, i.e. the one I want to (re)move that is the one with the feed to the hallway pendant.

I was wondering if the below would work:

1) Remove all hallway pendant wires from second switch (the one I don't want)
2) Then at that location, connect the wire that was in the COM terminal (and heading to pendant) into one of the wires that was in L1 or L2 (doesn't matter which) via a wago connector
3) At the first switch (the one that is staying) run a 3 core and earth to the new switch location. Connect the corresponding L1, L2 & COM together and then also connect the cable in 2) (i.e. going to pendant) into L2 on the first switch.

Hallway switch v2.jpg
 
timhoward

timhoward

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So to simplify the description a bit...
You have a hallway pendant, and two switches for it downstairs.
You want to lose one of them.
You want to add a switch upstairs.
You also want to add a 2nd light fitting to the same switching.
Correct so far?
 
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Mjward

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Correct, the dilemma being the power to the pendant comes from the switch I want to remove.
 
timhoward

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I think you describe the same solution, but here goes:

You want to end up with new 3 core+E connecting all three terminals of First Hallway Light switch with the new switch upstairs.
In addition you need a permanent live feed connecting to L1.
You then need to use one of the current conductors between the two downstairs switches to transfer switched live from L2 at the remaining switch to the pendant.

(So the two wires currently in COM should end up in L1 with the new wire)
That is stage one.

Stage 2, the extra light.... the other consideration here is where the neutral is coming from. You could use L2 at the switch upstairs as a switched live to the new fitting, but you'll need a neutral from the same lighting circuit as the hall too from somewhere.

Does that help?
 
timhoward

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So reading it again, basically what you said! I couldn't follow it until I'd arrived at the same conclusion for some reason....
 
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Mjward

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As long as we got to the same place I am delighted!
Re the neutrals, its an old system where you have the single & earth running from switch to switch for the live feed and the neutrals go from light fitting to light fitting. So for the new stair light circuits I have the choice but I think makes sense to tap into the downstairs neutral, that way the landing switch and things it controls are all on the same downstairs circuit.
 
timhoward

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Yes, you should tap into the downstairs neutral. That way if the two circuits ever end up on different RCBO's or different halves of a dual-RCD board it's future proof.
 
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Mjward

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In fact whilst in the subject, would love recommendations for stair way LED lights.

Something I had fitted to the last place, small round recessed lights (around 3cm diameter), warm white, white surround would be perfect.

But, I'm struggling to find anything similar, most seem to have a stainless steel surround (guess intended for outdoors) and are quite large lights.
 
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CamoElectric

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In fact whilst in the subject, would love recommendations for stair way LED lights.

Something I had fitted to the last place, small round recessed lights (around 3cm diameter), warm white, white surround would be perfect.

But, I'm struggling to find anything similar, most seem to have a stainless steel surround (guess intended for outdoors) and are quite large lights.
3cm?

White All LED 30mm Dia 1W IP44 LED Marker Lights 3000K - https://www.bltdirect.com/all-led-30mm-dia-1-watt-ip44-led-marker-light-warm-white-white-finish?cat= ?
 
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Mjward

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Ps i'm interested in the cable of unknown origin.
Haha you and I both. I assume it was a bit of future proofing ie it's gone somewhere the previous owner/spark thought might be an eventual termination. Alas for now it's just a black and red wire connected via a chocbox😂

Not sure if you've seen some of my other posts but long story short, moved into this house a few months ago and the electrics are "intriguing"! Sadly I can't even blame a DIYer as it was all certified.
 
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Mjward

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quinetic recievers and switches
Corr just had a quick look at those. Smart tech and I suspect that or something similar is the future. Have the home as one giant Faraday's cage, where your phones are charged simply by being inside and lights/switches etc all get their power wirelessly.

For now I'd be happy if they invent cable clips that glide through brick😂
 
Markyd

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Corr just had a quick look at those. Smart tech and I suspect that or something similar is the future. Have the home as one giant Faraday's cage, where your phones are charged simply by being inside and lights/switches etc all get their power wirelessly.

For now I'd be happy if they invent cable clips that glide through brick😂
Dont get me started on cable clips
 
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brianmoooore

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For now I'd be happy if they invent cable clips that glide through brick😂
There's a white brick around my part of the world, that was used for a hundred years or so, known as a Marland brick.
NOTHING penetrates them. The carbide tips just melt off of the ends of SDS bits, and the edge of diamond discs just melts a shallow groove into the brick.
 
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Mjward

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There's a white brick around my part of the world, that was used for a hundred years or so, known as a Marland brick.
NOTHING penetrates them. The carbide tips just melt off of the ends of SDS bits, and the edge of diamond discs just melts a shallow groove into the brick.
Ill guess I'll be grateful for my almost impenetrable 115yr old Yorkshire brick!😂 At least it reluctantly succumbs to an SDS!!
 
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Mjward

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Scratching my head about a solution from an aesthetics standpoint.

In the hallway I've got a switched fused spur. That feeds an external security light and the switch for porch lights. Rather than having two separate switches has any manufacturer made a 2 gang switch where one is for the fused spur and the other for a light?

Would just ideally like to not have two 1x gang switches stacked on top of each other if it can be avoided
 
Avo Mk8

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If I'm understanding correctly, you want a single width plate with a fuseholder and two switches on it, to provide the FCU function and control two different lamps. I seem to remember there was a thread on this recently, which I think suggested a grid switch.

Scolmore do 3 module grid switch, single width, which you could equip with the necessary Modules.

Otherwise this is the closest I have seen, though I'm not clear if the 'linked' reference means electrically, or if the switches are mechanically interlinked somehow. Each switch is double pole, and they presumably share common connections.
Also having 'fan' on a lightswitch doesn't help the aesthetics 🤪
 
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Mjward

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If I'm understanding correctly, you want a single width plate with a fuseholder and two switches on it, to provide the FCU function and control two different lamps. I seem to remember there was a thread on this recently, which I think suggested a grid switch.

Scolmore do 3 module grid switch, single width, which you could equip with the necessary Modules.

Otherwise this is the closest I have seen, though I'm not clear if the 'linked' reference means electrically, or if the switches are mechanically interlinked somehow. Each switch is double pole, and they presumably share common connections.
Also having 'fan' on a lightswitch doesn't help the aesthetics 🤪
Looks like grid switch is my only option as I've tried several different Google searches and it seems they don't exist.

(To clarify looking for 2 switches but one controls the FS and the other the porch lights. I'll have the security lights connected to the FS)

Alternatively an unswitched fused spur coupled with a single switch for a light would work too and probably even better
 
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Mjward

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Just to follow up, got around to wiring up the hallway today and all working well. Great to have hallway light access from top of stairs.

For stairway lights I’ve got running to a temporary MK pendant under the stairs. Still undecided on actual stair light size, erring towards smaller diameter
 
littlespark

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Yes. A lot of old farm cottages in the Borders here just built of rubble really... rocks about the size of your head, really powdery mortar between. Cold chisel just bounces of them.

The electrics, whenever they were put in, were mostly surface clipped, down to pattress boxes. No way could you sink a box into the wall.

i think most of them now have been framed out and lined with insulated plasterboard, allowing flush accessories
 
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Mjward

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Yes. A lot of old farm cottages in the Borders here just built of rubble really... rocks about the size of your head, really powdery mortar between. Cold chisel just bounces of them.

The electrics, whenever they were put in, were mostly surface clipped, down to pattress boxes. No way could you sink a box into the wall.

i think most of them now have been framed out and lined with insulated plasterboard, allowing flush accessories
Funnily enough was with my 80yr old neighbour this morning in his property he is selling. Old beauty of large thick Yorkshire stone. All his wiring is surface mounted, run in chrome pipes which actually works well for an industrial look.
 

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