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Alex, Master Electrician
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 1783
Experience:  Owner of independent electrical contracting company. Licensed Electrical Contractor in CT.
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Hi... wiring z-wave switches. Box has two cables coming from

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Hi... wiring z-wave switches. Box has two cables coming from top (black, white, ground) and one coming from the bottom. Box contains two switches with a traveler between them. Does 'line' come from the top or bottom of the box?
Hello and thank you for your question. My name is XXXXX XXXXX I'm here to help you.

it can be ether. do you have a multimeter? or any type of electrical tester?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

let me check


ok let me know.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

thanks for the help.. yes


ok. is it a volt meter with 2 probes? do you know how to use it?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

one wire (black with clip) and probe


can you tell me the manufacturer of the tester so i can look up?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

scosche digital multi-meter

they make different kinds. does it say that its good for 120v? can you tell me model number or do you know how to use?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


it looks like its 12v :(.

Mark we can try to determine which is hot without meter. it will just take few tries. do you want to do it?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

sure... The meter gave a reading on one of the black from the top. All the whites are capped together


ok so lets assume that is hot. lets name that wire as black 1

the other 2 as black 2 and 3.

first lets try this. shut the breaker off. keep whites spliced. splice black 1 and black together. turn the breaker on and tell me which light comes on.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The traveler wire is hot... from the bottom of the box.

did you do what I asked to double check? or you are all set and do not need my help anymore?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I did connect wire black 1 to black 2 which are from the top of the box. No lights came on. Fussing with it ... which helped me see that the black from the bottom is hot. The two wires from the top are the lights. One for outside the door and one for the house floods. Knowing that ... how do I connect the z-wave three way switch and auxiliary switch.

yes but if you only have 3 black wires you do not have 3 way system. you have 2 single pole switches. where were you planning to install auxiliary switch?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I may have a misunderstanding of how this works and have several regular and aux switches so can make this work with what I have.


With that said, I wanted one switch for the porch and one for the flood which is what was installed (manual switches). I thought that you would need a z-wave three way and aux because there was a traveler between the manual switches.


Now that we know that the bottom wire is hot and the two wires on the top are for the porch and flood... not sure what I need to do?

we need 45609 do you have that? if yes how many and what color wires are coming out of it?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

yes I have several 45609, but now confused as to how to hook it up.


Does it have one black (line ) one black (load ) one white (neutral ) and one ground wire coming out of it?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

By the way... its gotta to be hard to not see what I see... thanks for hanging-on


Yes, the bottom (and each cable) has black, white, ground.

I meant coming out of the z wave.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The switches are like manual switches where the wires connect to them so no wires coming out

So It has screw terminals? If yes are the screw colors different?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

yes, Terminals.. Load, line, Traveler, neutral.


All three of my cables have white caped together.


So... how do I take the one (bottom cable) and connect two zwave switches.. one to each of the (top cables). One switch for the porch and one for floods.

This is what we need to do. Add 2 white pig tails ( short piece of wire ) to the splice of white wires. Connect the other ends of each white pig tail to the neutral screw on each z wave switch.
Splice black coming from bottom together with 2 black pig tails. Connect each black pig tail to each Line screw of each z wave switch. Connect one black from top to Load screw on one z wave switch. Connect another black from top to another z wave switches load screw.

Let me know if you have more questions.
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