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Old June 15th 21, 09:43 PM posted to alt.home.repair
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Default Bad 3-Way Switch-- Again

On 6/15/21 3:02 PM, wrote:
On Tue, 15 Jun 2021 14:39:07 -0400, Wade Garrett
wrote:

On 6/15/21 1:32 PM, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Wade Garrett writes:
On 6/15/21 11:44 AM, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Marilyn Manson writes:
On Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 10:54:31 AM UTC-4, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Wade Garrett writes:
A couple of years ago, I replaced a pair of little-used (and only during
the summer) standard 20 amp Leviton 3-way toggle light switches
controlling a Hunter Original ceiling fan because at least one of the
switches had failed.

I installed the same then-current model Levitons and everything worked
fine for a few years. And don't you know, at least one of them has just
now failed!

The original switches and the fan were installed during a room addition
construction project by a licensed electrician hired by the general
contractor whom we've used for years and does very good work.

What are the chances of this being just a random second switch failure
vs. needing to get an electrician out to check it over?
The chances are high that you've got a problem that should be
looked at.

Just for the sake of discussion, what problems can you think of that would
break a 3-way switch?

Obvious signs of arcing, loose connections, etc.

'nuf said.

Two failures on something as ultra-reliable as a Leviton switch?

Was the correct switch chosen for the application? Switching motor
loads isn't the normal job for a residential light switch.

What would be the right switch to use?

It's a 20 amp switch on a 20 amp circuit. There are several outlets on
that circuit-- but the fan is the only thing the switch controls. Hunter
says the fan draws 2 amps.

When you say 'failed', what do you mean? Does the switch physically
allow the toggle to move, or is it stuck? Does it move, but not close
the contacts (failed off) or move but not open the contacts (failed on)?

The fan only turns if the A switch and the B switch are both in the DOWN
position.

The fan does not turn with any if the other possible combinations of UPs
and DOWNs.


We are assuming it worked OK for a while and quit, you do seem to have
one switch that is not switching. Do they both feel the same when you
operate them?
The other possibility is a bad connection on one of the travelers. Did
they use the screws or stabbed

Both switches feel normal to throw up or down.

Wire connections solid-- correct strip length and tightly looped CW
around correct terminals.

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Old June 15th 21, 10:11 PM posted to alt.home.repair
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Default Bad 3-Way Switch-- Again

In alt.home.repair, on Tue, 15 Jun 2021 10:21:00 -0400, Wade Garrett
wrote:

A couple of years ago, I replaced a pair of little-used (and only during
the summer) standard 20 amp Leviton 3-way toggle light switches
controlling a Hunter Original ceiling fan because at least one of the
switches had failed.


By failed, you mean that the fan didn't go on at all??

Not that it woudln't turn off or was intermittent

And you didn't hear sparking or see it through the handle.

I installed the same then-current model Levitons and everything worked
fine for a few years. And don't you know, at least one of them has just
now failed!

The original switches and the fan were installed during a room addition
construction project by a licensed electrician hired by the general
contractor whom we've used for years and does very good work.


You replaced both when surely only one was broken?

What are the chances of this being just a random second switch failure
vs. needing to get an electrician out to check it over?


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Old June 15th 21, 10:37 PM posted to alt.home.repair
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Default Bad 3-Way Switch-- Again

writes:
On 6/15/21 3:22 PM, Marilyn Manson wrote:
On Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 3:03:08 PM UTC-4, wrote:
On Tue, 15 Jun 2021 14:39:07 -0400, Wade Garrett
wrote:
On 6/15/21 1:32 PM, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Wade Garrett writes:
On 6/15/21 11:44 AM, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Marilyn Manson writes:
On Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 10:54:31 AM UTC-4, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Wade Garrett writes:
A couple of years ago, I replaced a pair of little-used (and only during
the summer) standard 20 amp Leviton 3-way toggle light switches
controlling a Hunter Original ceiling fan because at least one of the
switches had failed.

I installed the same then-current model Levitons and everything worked
fine for a few years. And don't you know, at least one of them has just
now failed!

The original switches and the fan were installed during a room addition
construction project by a licensed electrician hired by the general
contractor whom we've used for years and does very good work.

What are the chances of this being just a random second switch failure
vs. needing to get an electrician out to check it over?
The chances are high that you've got a problem that should be
looked at.

Just for the sake of discussion, what problems can you think of that would
break a 3-way switch?

Obvious signs of arcing, loose connections, etc.

'nuf said.

Two failures on something as ultra-reliable as a Leviton switch?

Was the correct switch chosen for the application? Switching motor
loads isn't the normal job for a residential light switch.

What would be the right switch to use?

It's a 20 amp switch on a 20 amp circuit. There are several outlets on
that circuit-- but the fan is the only thing the switch controls. Hunter
says the fan draws 2 amps.

When you say 'failed', what do you mean? Does the switch physically
allow the toggle to move, or is it stuck? Does it move, but not close
the contacts (failed off) or move but not open the contacts (failed on)?

The fan only turns if the A switch and the B switch are both in the DOWN
position.

The fan does not turn with any if the other possible combinations of UPs
and DOWNs.
We are assuming it worked OK for a while and quit, you do seem to have
one switch that is not switching. Do they both feel the same when you
operate them?
The other possibility is a bad connection on one of the travelers. Did
they use the screws or stabbed


Does Leviton even make back-stabbed 3-way switches? I wouldn't expect
a 20A spec or commercial grade switch to have back-stabbed holes available.


Yes they do.

See https://www.leviton.com/en/products/1223-lhw

"20 Amp, 120 Volt, Toggle Lighted Handle - Illuminated OFF 3-Way AC
Quiet Switch, Industrial Grade, Self Grounding, Back & Side Wired, - White"


Back-wired is _very_ different from back-stabbed.

The former uses a pressure plate and a screw to connect
the conductor, while the latter has a cheap copper clip
that "grabs" the wire when inserted.

The former is legal for all uses (and far more convenient than
side wiring, particularly when using stranded THHN).
  #24   Report Post  
Old June 15th 21, 10:38 PM posted to alt.home.repair
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Posts: 2,377
Default Bad 3-Way Switch-- Again

Wade Garrett writes:
On 6/15/21 3:02 PM, wrote:
On Tue, 15 Jun 2021 14:39:07 -0400, Wade Garrett
wrote:

On 6/15/21 1:32 PM, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Wade Garrett writes:
On 6/15/21 11:44 AM, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Marilyn Manson writes:
On Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 10:54:31 AM UTC-4, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Wade Garrett writes:
A couple of years ago, I replaced a pair of little-used (and only during
the summer) standard 20 amp Leviton 3-way toggle light switches
controlling a Hunter Original ceiling fan because at least one of the
switches had failed.

I installed the same then-current model Levitons and everything worked
fine for a few years. And don't you know, at least one of them has just
now failed!

The original switches and the fan were installed during a room addition
construction project by a licensed electrician hired by the general
contractor whom we've used for years and does very good work.

What are the chances of this being just a random second switch failure
vs. needing to get an electrician out to check it over?
The chances are high that you've got a problem that should be
looked at.

Just for the sake of discussion, what problems can you think of that would
break a 3-way switch?

Obvious signs of arcing, loose connections, etc.

'nuf said.

Two failures on something as ultra-reliable as a Leviton switch?

Was the correct switch chosen for the application? Switching motor
loads isn't the normal job for a residential light switch.

What would be the right switch to use?

It's a 20 amp switch on a 20 amp circuit. There are several outlets on
that circuit-- but the fan is the only thing the switch controls. Hunter
says the fan draws 2 amps.

When you say 'failed', what do you mean? Does the switch physically
allow the toggle to move, or is it stuck? Does it move, but not close
the contacts (failed off) or move but not open the contacts (failed on)?

The fan only turns if the A switch and the B switch are both in the DOWN
position.

The fan does not turn with any if the other possible combinations of UPs
and DOWNs.


We are assuming it worked OK for a while and quit, you do seem to have
one switch that is not switching. Do they both feel the same when you
operate them?
The other possibility is a bad connection on one of the travelers. Did
they use the screws or stabbed

Both switches feel normal to throw up or down.

Wire connections solid-- correct strip length and tightly looped CW
around correct terminals.


So pull the switch and check the terminals with a ohmmeter.
  #25   Report Post  
Old June 15th 21, 10:41 PM posted to alt.home.repair
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Posts: 1,340
Default Bad 3-Way Switch-- Again

In alt.home.repair, on Tue, 15 Jun 2021 13:03:21 -0700 (PDT), Marilyn
Manson wrote:

On Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 3:41:28 PM UTC-4, wrote:
On 6/15/21 3:22 PM, Marilyn Manson wrote:
On Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 3:03:08 PM UTC-4, wrote:
On Tue, 15 Jun 2021 14:39:07 -0400, Wade Garrett
wrote:
On 6/15/21 1:32 PM, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Wade Garrett writes:
On 6/15/21 11:44 AM, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Marilyn Manson writes:
On Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 10:54:31 AM UTC-4, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Wade Garrett writes:
A couple of years ago, I replaced a pair of little-used (and only during
the summer) standard 20 amp Leviton 3-way toggle light switches
controlling a Hunter Original ceiling fan because at least one of the
switches had failed.

I installed the same then-current model Levitons and everything worked
fine for a few years. And don't you know, at least one of them has just
now failed!

The original switches and the fan were installed during a room addition
construction project by a licensed electrician hired by the general
contractor whom we've used for years and does very good work.

What are the chances of this being just a random second switch failure
vs. needing to get an electrician out to check it over?
The chances are high that you've got a problem that should be
looked at.

Just for the sake of discussion, what problems can you think of that would
break a 3-way switch?

Obvious signs of arcing, loose connections, etc.

'nuf said.

Two failures on something as ultra-reliable as a Leviton switch?

Was the correct switch chosen for the application? Switching motor
loads isn't the normal job for a residential light switch.

What would be the right switch to use?

It's a 20 amp switch on a 20 amp circuit. There are several outlets on
that circuit-- but the fan is the only thing the switch controls. Hunter
says the fan draws 2 amps.

When you say 'failed', what do you mean? Does the switch physically
allow the toggle to move, or is it stuck? Does it move, but not close
the contacts (failed off) or move but not open the contacts (failed on)?

The fan only turns if the A switch and the B switch are both in the DOWN
position.

The fan does not turn with any if the other possible combinations of UPs
and DOWNs.
We are assuming it worked OK for a while and quit, you do seem to have
one switch that is not switching. Do they both feel the same when you
operate them?
The other possibility is a bad connection on one of the travelers. Did
they use the screws or stabbed

Does Leviton even make back-stabbed 3-way switches? I wouldn't expect
a 20A spec or commercial grade switch to have back-stabbed holes available.

Yes they do.

See https://www.leviton.com/en/products/1223-lhw

"20 Amp, 120 Volt, Toggle Lighted Handle - Illuminated OFF 3-Way AC
Quiet Switch, Industrial Grade, Self Grounding, Back & Side Wired, - White"


Back wired is not the same as back-stabbed.

Back wired often (usually, these days?) means that the wire is inserted under
a plate from the back of the device and the screw is then tightened, securing
the wire.

Back-stabbed means that there is a hole in the back of the device that contains
a sharp metal tab that bends as the wire is inserted and then digs into the wire
to hold it in place. They are known to be problematic.

The 1223-LHW has the plate, therefore it is not a back-stab device.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Leviton-...447190#overlay


You have proved your point, not back-stabbed.

Look how wide that thing is. I haven't seen one that wid for 50 years.

The way I look at it, one switch out of a million fails, and the chances
of getting two in a row are 1/1,000,000 squared. One in a trillion,
divided by 2 since the OP has 4 of them, not just 2. There are
probably 500 billion lightswitches in the world. I have 19 in this
little house alone. And in addition to residences, there are billions
of workplaces.



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Old June 15th 21, 10:47 PM posted to alt.home.repair
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Posts: 1,340
Default Bad 3-Way Switch-- Again

In alt.home.repair, on Tue, 15 Jun 2021 07:57:35 -0700 (PDT), Marilyn
Manson wrote:

On Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 10:21:07 AM UTC-4, Wade Garrett wrote:
A couple of years ago, I replaced a pair of little-used (and only during
the summer) standard 20 amp Leviton 3-way toggle light switches
controlling a Hunter Original ceiling fan because at least one of the
switches had failed.

I installed the same then-current model Levitons and everything worked
fine for a few years. And don't you know, at least one of them has just
now failed!

The original switches and the fan were installed during a room addition
construction project by a licensed electrician hired by the general
contractor whom we've used for years and does very good work.

What are the chances of this being just a random second switch failure
vs. needing to get an electrician out to check it over?


For the price of a switch vs. an electrician, I'd give at least one more switch
a try -


Absolutely. $3 vs. $100, plus it's not even easier to call an
electrician. You have be there up to half a day waiting for him. It's
easier to buy one and put it in when you have 10 spare minutes.

and I'm as anal as they come about finding the root cause.

I've had problems with various Leviton devices, including exhaust fan humidistat
switches and smart dimmer plugs. Granted, those devices are a bit more complicated
than a 3-way switch, but if the company quality control issues, it could be product-line
wide.


I don't think anything electrical has broken in the 38 years I've been
here. Except the flood light fixture on the side of the house, 2 or
maybe 3 of them, in sequence, and the outside front door fixture, but
it's got photocell control and that's the source of the problem for both
that failed. No switches have failed.
  #27   Report Post  
Old June 15th 21, 10:54 PM posted to alt.home.repair
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Posts: 91
Default Bad 3-Way Switch-- Again

On Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 5:41:34 PM UTC-4, micky wrote:
In alt.home.repair, on Tue, 15 Jun 2021 13:03:21 -0700 (PDT), Marilyn
Manson wrote:

On Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 3:41:28 PM UTC-4, wrote:
On 6/15/21 3:22 PM, Marilyn Manson wrote:
On Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 3:03:08 PM UTC-4, wrote:
On Tue, 15 Jun 2021 14:39:07 -0400, Wade Garrett
wrote:
On 6/15/21 1:32 PM, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Wade Garrett writes:
On 6/15/21 11:44 AM, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Marilyn Manson writes:
On Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 10:54:31 AM UTC-4, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Wade Garrett writes:
A couple of years ago, I replaced a pair of little-used (and only during
the summer) standard 20 amp Leviton 3-way toggle light switches
controlling a Hunter Original ceiling fan because at least one of the
switches had failed.

I installed the same then-current model Levitons and everything worked
fine for a few years. And don't you know, at least one of them has just
now failed!

The original switches and the fan were installed during a room addition
construction project by a licensed electrician hired by the general
contractor whom we've used for years and does very good work.

What are the chances of this being just a random second switch failure
vs. needing to get an electrician out to check it over?
The chances are high that you've got a problem that should be
looked at.

Just for the sake of discussion, what problems can you think of that would
break a 3-way switch?

Obvious signs of arcing, loose connections, etc.

'nuf said.

Two failures on something as ultra-reliable as a Leviton switch?

Was the correct switch chosen for the application? Switching motor
loads isn't the normal job for a residential light switch.

What would be the right switch to use?

It's a 20 amp switch on a 20 amp circuit. There are several outlets on
that circuit-- but the fan is the only thing the switch controls. Hunter
says the fan draws 2 amps.

When you say 'failed', what do you mean? Does the switch physically
allow the toggle to move, or is it stuck? Does it move, but not close
the contacts (failed off) or move but not open the contacts (failed on)?

The fan only turns if the A switch and the B switch are both in the DOWN
position.

The fan does not turn with any if the other possible combinations of UPs
and DOWNs.
We are assuming it worked OK for a while and quit, you do seem to have
one switch that is not switching. Do they both feel the same when you
operate them?
The other possibility is a bad connection on one of the travelers. Did
they use the screws or stabbed

Does Leviton even make back-stabbed 3-way switches? I wouldn't expect
a 20A spec or commercial grade switch to have back-stabbed holes available.

Yes they do.

See https://www.leviton.com/en/products/1223-lhw

"20 Amp, 120 Volt, Toggle Lighted Handle - Illuminated OFF 3-Way AC
Quiet Switch, Industrial Grade, Self Grounding, Back & Side Wired, - White"


Back wired is not the same as back-stabbed.

Back wired often (usually, these days?) means that the wire is inserted under
a plate from the back of the device and the screw is then tightened, securing
the wire.

Back-stabbed means that there is a hole in the back of the device that contains
a sharp metal tab that bends as the wire is inserted and then digs into the wire
to hold it in place. They are known to be problematic.

The 1223-LHW has the plate, therefore it is not a back-stab device.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Leviton-...447190#overlay

You have proved your point, not back-stabbed.

Look how wide that thing is. I haven't seen one that wid for 50 years.


You are aware that this is a 3-way switch, don't you?


The way I look at it, one switch out of a million fails,


....and what makes you look at it that way? Any data to back that up?

and the chances
of getting two in a row are 1/1,000,000 squared. One in a trillion,
divided by 2 since the OP has 4 of them, not just 2. There are
probably 500 billion lightswitches in the world.


If all your calculations are based on the original unsubstantiated
"one out of a million" WAG, then they too are unsubstantiated.

I have 19 in this
little house alone. And in addition to residences, there are billions
of workplaces.


You have 19 Leviton 20A 3-way switches? Shouldn't that be either 18
or 20? What's the point of using a single 3-way switch?




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Old June 15th 21, 11:43 PM posted to alt.home.repair
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Default Bad 3-Way Switch-- Again

Marilyn Manson writes:
On Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 5:41:34 PM UTC-4, micky wrote:
In alt.home.repair, on Tue, 15 Jun 2021 13:03:21 -0700 (PDT), Marilyn
Manson wrote:


The 1223-LHW has the plate, therefore it is not a back-stab device.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Leviton-...447190#overlay

You have proved your point, not back-stabbed.

Look how wide that thing is. I haven't seen one that wid for 50 years.


You are aware that this is a 3-way switch, don't you?


Which is just a SPDT switch. There's no need for it to
be significantly wider than an SPST switch, even with
the additional terminal (usually on the opposite side).


I have 19 in this
little house alone. And in addition to residences, there are billions
of workplaces.


You have 19 Leviton 20A 3-way switches? Shouldn't that be either 18
or 20? What's the point of using a single 3-way switch?


To avoid a trip to the hardware store.
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Old June 16th 21, 04:44 AM posted to alt.home.repair
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Posts: 14,142
Default Bad 3-Way Switch-- Again

On Tue, 15 Jun 2021 16:43:43 -0400, Wade Garrett
wrote:

On 6/15/21 3:02 PM, wrote:
On Tue, 15 Jun 2021 14:39:07 -0400, Wade Garrett
wrote:

On 6/15/21 1:32 PM, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Wade Garrett writes:
On 6/15/21 11:44 AM, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Marilyn Manson writes:
On Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 10:54:31 AM UTC-4, Scott Lurndal wrote:
Wade Garrett writes:
A couple of years ago, I replaced a pair of little-used (and only during
the summer) standard 20 amp Leviton 3-way toggle light switches
controlling a Hunter Original ceiling fan because at least one of the
switches had failed.

I installed the same then-current model Levitons and everything worked
fine for a few years. And don't you know, at least one of them has just
now failed!

The original switches and the fan were installed during a room addition
construction project by a licensed electrician hired by the general
contractor whom we've used for years and does very good work.

What are the chances of this being just a random second switch failure
vs. needing to get an electrician out to check it over?
The chances are high that you've got a problem that should be
looked at.

Just for the sake of discussion, what problems can you think of that would
break a 3-way switch?

Obvious signs of arcing, loose connections, etc.

'nuf said.

Two failures on something as ultra-reliable as a Leviton switch?

Was the correct switch chosen for the application? Switching motor
loads isn't the normal job for a residential light switch.

What would be the right switch to use?

It's a 20 amp switch on a 20 amp circuit. There are several outlets on
that circuit-- but the fan is the only thing the switch controls. Hunter
says the fan draws 2 amps.

When you say 'failed', what do you mean? Does the switch physically
allow the toggle to move, or is it stuck? Does it move, but not close
the contacts (failed off) or move but not open the contacts (failed on)?

The fan only turns if the A switch and the B switch are both in the DOWN
position.

The fan does not turn with any if the other possible combinations of UPs
and DOWNs.


We are assuming it worked OK for a while and quit, you do seem to have
one switch that is not switching. Do they both feel the same when you
operate them?
The other possibility is a bad connection on one of the travelers. Did
they use the screws or stabbed

Both switches feel normal to throw up or down.

Wire connections solid-- correct strip length and tightly looped CW
around correct terminals.


Not much left but a switch. If you are comfortable working on live
wires you could pull the switches and check it with a meter or a
circuit tracer just as a sanity check but if you already have them
out. it is just as easy to replace one or both.
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Old June 16th 21, 04:48 AM posted to alt.home.repair
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Default Bad 3-Way Switch-- Again

On Tue, 15 Jun 2021 22:43:22 GMT, (Scott Lurndal)
wrote:

Marilyn Manson writes:
On Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 5:41:34 PM UTC-4, micky wrote:
In alt.home.repair, on Tue, 15 Jun 2021 13:03:21 -0700 (PDT), Marilyn
Manson wrote:


The 1223-LHW has the plate, therefore it is not a back-stab device.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Leviton-...447190#overlay
You have proved your point, not back-stabbed.

Look how wide that thing is. I haven't seen one that wid for 50 years.


You are aware that this is a 3-way switch, don't you?


Which is just a SPDT switch. There's no need for it to
be significantly wider than an SPST switch, even with
the additional terminal (usually on the opposite side).


The 20a devices are bigger than the 15s tho.



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