Electrical Wiring in the Home/light switches


Hi, I am trying to figure out why my hallway lights dont work,, I replaced all the switches 4 but 2 of the old ones had 4way wiring,, its an 1950s ranch,, and I think its origanal,   there are 2 about 15 ft apart on the same wall, with the same heavy gauge wires, but the one closest to the batroom has 4 wires with 2 black capped off behind the switch,, then the hall Ts off to the front door, with a switch n the other side  and I dont know how they are powered,, before I disconected them,, the one by the front door, had 122 volts,, then after I changed the switch, I cant get it to read mor than 3 volts,,they must be hooked in series,, but I am no electrician,, any help?

Unfortunately, colors really don't mean much when it comes to 3 way and 4 way switches.  Every multiple switch circuit has 2 3-way switches.  Any others are 4 way. One screw is a different color on each 3 way switch.  The odd color screw goes to the black power source on one side, and to the black fixture wire on the other.  The other two screws have wires that go only to the other switches.  If you don't put the right wires on the right screws, they will not work.

Also make sure that you did not knock any wires loose when you replaced the switches. Recheck the wires on the screws, and check the wires connected to each other with wirenuts.
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Electrical Wiring in the Home

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Bob Sponaugle


Just about any home wiring question. (not appliance repair) I have done all kinds of home wiring for myself, including adding a new breaker box, etc. Please, questions from North America only. Please be specific with details.

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