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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Had a light with one master switch and two three ways. My guess was that someone wired a single pole in series with two three ways. It took me a couple hours to figure out what was going on. But what I found was it had a double pole switch installed instead of a four way switch. They look the same so I can see how someone could have mixed them up easy. But my first clue should have been the off/on label on the switch. A four way or three way doesn't have an off/on mark. So I bought a four way, swapped it out and it works good.

Electronics
 

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Tinstaafl said:
Nope. There are two poles.
So let me get this straight. You guys call a switch that only carries a live load but has double throws a DP too! Electrical names over here are so different that UK.
3 way here is 2 way
4 way her is intermediate
And now 4 way is 2 pole. It's no wonder I come across so many "double poles" put in place of 4 ways over here. So what us a true double pole called?
 

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BCConstruction said:
So let me get this straight. You guys call a switch that only carries a live load but has double throws a DP too! Electrical names over here are so different that UK. 3 way here is 2 way 4 way her is intermediate And now 4 way is 2 pole. It's no wonder I come across so many "double poles" put in place of 4 ways over here. So what us a true double pole called?

Ok I just read the reason why. It's because neutral is not switched in North America and double poles are mainly used to switch. 220v which is standard in the UK on single pole.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
So let me get this straight. You guys call a switch that only carries a live load but has double throws a DP too! Electrical names over here are so different that UK.
3 way here is 2 way
4 way her is intermediate
And now 4 way is 2 pole. It's no wonder I come across so many "double poles" put in place of 4 ways over here. So what us a true double pole called?
Maybe that was it, the house was built in 1960, must have been an Englishmen that got the names confused and put in the wrong switch.

We don't really call a 4-way a double pole, he was just saying it has two poles. The Leviton web page defines them.





Double throw switch is one of these:
 

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KennMacMoragh said:
Maybe that was it, the house was built in 1960, must have been an Englishmen that got the names confused and put in the wrong switch. We don't really call a 4-way a double pole, he was just saying it has two poles. The Leviton web page defines them. Double throw switch is one of these:
That's why I'm confused. I have changed out maybe 10+ 4 ways where someone wired them With a true "double pole" over here. If people call 4 ways double poles too I can see why this happens so often here. I'm curious though as to what a true double pole switch is called like in your first diagram.

I done one not long ago where it had been wired with a double pole 4 15years and never worked right. Customer said not one electrician who ever tried to fix it could figure it out. Took me 20seconds.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
That's why I'm confused. I have changed out maybe 10+ 4 ways where someone wired them With a true "double pole" over here. If people call 4 ways double poles too I can see why this happens so often here. I'm curious though as to what a true double pole switch is called like in your first diagram.

I done one not long ago where it had been wired with a double pole 4 15years and never worked right. Customer said not one electrician who ever tried to fix it could figure it out. Took me 20seconds.
That's good, it took me about two hours, I had to do some tracing to see what was going on because I assumed the problem was in the wiring. When the wiring looked good I examined the switch and figured out the problem. If I ever came across this again it would probably take me 20 seconds to figure out.

I don't call 4-ways double poles so I won't make that mistake. The one in my first diagram actually is called a double pole.
 

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KennMacMoragh said:
That's good, it took me about two hours, I had to do some tracing to see what was going on because I assumed the problem was in the wiring. When the wiring looked good I examined the switch and figured out the problem. If I ever came across this again it would probably take me 20 seconds to figure out. I don't call 4-ways double poles so I won't make that mistake. The one in my first diagram actually is called a double pole.
Ok so it's just a case of some people call 4 ways double poles.

I would also love to know how they concluded that a 2 way is a 3 way.

In the UK its common, switched leg A switched leg B. So it's switched 2 ways not 3 lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Ok so it's just a case of some people call 4 ways double poles.

I would also love to know how they concluded that a 2 way is a 3 way.

In the UK its common, switched leg A switched leg B. So it's switched 2 ways not 3 lol
Because our 3-ways have 3 points, same as yours. A 1-way switch would just be a wire, only 1 point.
 
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