Electrician Talk banner
1 - 18 of 18 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been asked to give a talk at a local trade school on 3-way and 4-way switches and circuits and I need some interesting commercial uses to present. Any ideas appreciated.
 

·
Administrator
Retired EC
Joined
·
23,563 Posts
I don't do a lot of commercial work but I usually don't see any 3 way switches. I imagine the hall ways would be an area that may have 3 way switches. Hopefully others will chime in.
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
13,020 Posts
Did a new school a few years back... it had a common area/lounge thing on the 2nd floor with a couple of doors and each one was part of a 3-way/4-way circuit.

Pretty much the same stuff you could see on resi I suppose, just not as often.
 

·
RIP 1959-2015
Joined
·
39,618 Posts
I don't do a lot of commercial work but I usually don't see any 3 way switches. I imagine the hall ways would be an area that may have 3 way switches. Hopefully others will chime in.
we use them in conference rooms and any other room that has two or more doorways.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
Big Ballrooms in big hotels could possibly have dozens of entrances/exits. If they wanted a switch at every door there's an example such that if x= # of doors you've got 2 3ways and (x-2) 4ways.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
Open to Close is similar to projection screen. The only difference is one switch leg is always energized, since the sign is always on. The momentary switch on a projection screen keeps both switch legs de-energized until forward or reverse is pushed, but the wiring is the same in that you've got two switch legs, but can only energize one at a time.
 

·
Modérateur
Joined
·
8,692 Posts
There were one jobsite sometime back I have ran into a 3 way switch that used for two speed fan motour useage that one of few places they can use the three way switch for.

{ I know you will say something about three way switch I did change that with centre off to slove the issue with it.}

There are quite few commercal locations that do use 3 and 4 way switch not only in switch appactions but in motion sensor useage as well.

Merci.
Marc
 

·
Coffee drinking member
I pretwist and then use wire nuts. Solder pots rule.
Joined
·
13,958 Posts
We used 3 ways in the wards of a large hospital. Off went the ward lights & on came 1 small night light bulb. All the switches were at the nurses station.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,416 Posts
Some times in an office building, the conference room will have such wide doors, with multiple panels, that it requires a 3-way setup on each side of it, besides any other 4-ways that other entrances require..

Instead of a individual light circuit, sometimes a contactor will be switched from multiple locations, for large areas. This is getting less prevalent with the newer systems for motion sensing however.

An ATS is really just a large 3-way used in reverse.

A 4-way can be used in a pinch for a single pole or a 3-way.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
624 Posts
Look for 3 and sometimes 4 ways in conference rooms or any larger room with two entrances, long corridors, stairways, private theatre settings. I have also seen 3 ways used in raising and lowering screens.
 

·
Administrator
Retired EC
Joined
·
23,563 Posts
Sure everyone uses three ways but I am trying to see where the commercial application is any different than a residential one. I can't think of one scenario that would help the OP as a commercial application.
 

·
Conduit Extraordinare
Joined
·
2,365 Posts
I have used a three way to feed a contactor. One comes from the photo cell, one comes from a constant hot. This way you can check the lighting control with out having to find the photo cell, get on a roof, etc. You can check the system, lamps, ballasts, etc in the daylight with out the use of tape and a ladder.....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
As the OP, first I want to thank everyone for their examples and I encourage more posts.

Sure everyone uses three ways but I am trying to see where the commercial application is any different than a residential one. I can't think of one scenario that would help the OP as a commercial application.
I agree and I am looking for those 1 or 2 great commercial applications that'll get heads nodding. The entrance switches are just like residential, just bigger rooms and more doors.

What I have added to my talk as a result of the posts thus far are (a) the hospital ward example. I can imagine this providing value to nurses at a nurses station allowing them to control the lights in all of the rooms in their charge from one location, (b) similarly the "private theater" mention although doesn't have details or maybe a recording studio, is similar, lights that probably have switches elsewhere can be controlled from a central location (any more of these "central location" examples would be great), (c) the projection screen (motor control in general) was added as a good example of a non-standard use, and (d) I also added an interactive portion of the talk to discuss "3-way motion sensors, is the name a misnomer?" which was mentioned as well.

So this has been great and I appreciate everyone contributing to the education of the trade's future generations.

Keep 'em comin'!!!

(I was typing this when mdfriday posted the contactor example; I like it; I'll use that one too.)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,099 Posts
I have used a three way to feed a contactor. One comes from the photo cell, one comes from a constant hot. This way you can check the lighting control with out having to find the photo cell, get on a roof, etc. You can check the system, lamps, ballasts, etc in the daylight with out the use of tape and a ladder.....
That is a pretty good idea.:thumbsup:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
931 Posts
tape and a ladder. lol just did a job where i "jumped up several times" to put the tape on a photo cell to test it. No one saw me I hope but I'm sure I looked silly trying to smooth tape while amid jump. I could have gotten the ladder off the truck but that was a long walk.
 
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
Top