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I have a 3 way switch in the wall with no electric and can't figure where it goes? Answered

I am stuck. I have two three way switches in a box. I think one went to a un-used outside light, but I can not find the other switch any place.
The same it true of the other switch, also a three way. I don't know where it runs to. There are no additional switches in the house and no other lights they could go to that are not already operable by a switch. I have a unused 3 way wire in a box and after trial and error discovered that 3 way wire does not go to these switches, or for that matter any place in the house.

Help... Thanks...

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M.G1
M.G1

5 years ago

Update. I found the ends of the wire by making one line live. I don't like doing things this way but for me it worked. So not I have the two ends and the other two ends had been stored in the wall in boxes. I did have to take out a ceiling light and the box to flashlight in the hidden area to find the box. Looks like an old box with the end in it, and who ever put in the new light put in a new box for the light. So that part is done.... As for the light in the peak, I am going to get the ladder out and search it out even tho I hate doing this in the cold. But I do not want to spend another day worrying about this. Thanks all for your input. Nancy.

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Kiteman
Kiteman

5 years ago

You can get gadgets that work like a metal detector, but my personal inclination would be to trim off the mystery wires, wrap insulating tape around the ends, and then fit a single-switch plate to work the outside light.

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Josehf Murchison
Josehf Murchison

5 years ago

What room are the switches in?

Are they live, check with a meter.

Some rooms like the living room with more than one way in or out can have switches on the receptacles for the living room lamps on the end tables.

Do you have lights plugged into all the receptacles.

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M.G1
M.G1

Answer 5 years ago

The area is the entry hall, and stairs leading to the upstairs and a outside light in the peak. The outside light in the peak, was disconnected, but the wires are in the wall I think, (I am sure actually) I can not tell what is really happening up there as I can not get up to the peak at this time from the outside. One switch I am guessing went to this outside light, as there is no other switch in the house that would go to it anyplace. And if one did install this type of light, one would want it close to a outside door so it can be turned on at will. (it is not a motion light). However the switch I think belonged to this outside light is a 3 way switch. I assume it was tied into another 3 way switch, but the only other 3 way switch is in the same box. Nothing is live with with I am working on. I have a test light, pig tale, that I like to work with, so I have tested everything with that. No, I do not have lights plugged into all the receptacles but I know where most of then go and what line is going into the main breaker box, as most of the electric in the house I had to re-do. I can see that the line that goes to the 2nd story is coming out of the floor and into what was a partition wall is a line that would be used by a 3 way switch. (w,b,r & ground). It seems to be going over the ceiling and down to the box with the 3 way switch, but when I cause that line to be live... I do not get a reading. I hate to tear out the ceiling... Next I am going to open a ceiling light and check it out and then perhaps the outside light. Maybe the wires were cut off and hidden by siding or sheet rock... Makes me worry a lot and so I am determined now to find these wires. Thanks.

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Josehf Murchison
Josehf Murchison

Answer 5 years ago

Yea old houses can drive you crazy.

I lived in a house in Mount Forest with a basement apartment my father inlaw was living in. The bathroom in the basement apartment needed remodeling. Just a new tub and a door to the master bedroom.

I ended up striping the entire apartment to the studs and removing pluming to nowhere wires to nowhere, live light switch buried in the wall, and all the aluminum wires. I even replaced the support posts for the main beam of the house.

So I can feel your problem

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Downunder35m
Downunder35m

5 years ago

Either disconnect and forget or get a wire tracer to follow the cables.
Most sparkies will lend you one for a small fee if you ask nice.