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Inovelli Community

LZW31-SN 3way non neutral

I installed and setup a couple of these switches yesterday in a three way configuration in a non-neutral setup and am experiencing some weirdness.

I have tried wiring the switches in basically every combination and they mostly work as they should.

Room 1: Dimmer installed (non-neutral) 3way setup using a GE Aux switch. Do not have pics of the old setup as the 2nd box just had the three wires tied together to disable the switch prior to me doing the install.

The Wiring is as follows
Box1 (Stairs) Inovelli Dimmer - Red wire connected to Traveler, Black wire connected to Line, White to Load
Basement Lights - Bulbs are not LED so no bypass installed, though i do have a bypass
Box 2 (Basement Wall) GE Aux switch - Red connected to Traveler, Black and White connected to Neutral
Without Black/White connected to Neutral the main switch doesnt powerup.

Behavior: The main inovelli switch works 100% of the time correctly, the Aux switch powers off lights everytime, but only powers on the lights sometimes after pressing on/off repeatedly.

Room 2: Dimmer installed (non-neutral) 3way setup using a GE Aux switch. (Actually have pictures of orig switches before they were unhooked.
Box 1 Old Setup: Black Screw (Red Wire), Srew above on same side (White Wire), Screw on Opposite Side (Black Wire).
Box 2 Old Setup: Black Screw (Red Wire) Screw right below it on same side (White Wire), Screw on opposite side (Black Wire).

Box1: Inovelli Dimmer (Hallway) - White Traveler, Red Line, Black Load
Kitchen Lights: This is an LED light, added in the bypass resistor. Only wires in the fixture are white/black.
Box2: Aux Switch (Kitchen) - White Traveler, red and black to neutral
Behavior: Same Behaviour as Room1

Any thoughts on what the issue could be for either of the rooms? The house is an old house built in the 60’s. I can probably get into the attic and re-wire the entire Second Room (Kitchen but would like to avoid it possible). The First room i cannot get to where the wires are as there is a floor above so there isnt any easy access.

Maybe the Aux Switch I am using isnt one that is compatible? I am using a GE In wall add-on switch. The model number listed is ZW2004.

GE Aux switches require only 2 wires. Traveller and neutral. They will not work in a non-neutral setup.

The big issue I’m seeing here, and not just from a functionality but also from a safety perspective, is that in the GE Aux switch you’re blindly hooking up black and white as neutrals. I’ve never seen a circuit where the black and white wires on the same wire are both neutral, and even more likely one of those could be connected to power in the other box. So if 1 is truly neutral, you’ll now end up in a scenario to cause a short. Best case scenario you throw the breaker and wreck your switches. Worst case, you burn your house down.

With the information here, we can’t help you. Disconnect those switches ASAP, get some pics up, diagram your wires and then we can look at helping you hook it up. Otherwise, I’d call in an electrician

Aux switches are specifically required in non-neutral setups, however there should only be two wires connected to the aux switch. If you need to connect both all three to the aux switch for the main switch to power up, something is wrong!

Make sure you are confident what your wiring schematic is before attempting to install yourself.

What is the non traveler wire hooked to the aux switch connect back to?

@doublepedaldylan the GE Aux switch will not work in a fully non-neutral setup as it absolutely requires neutral to function.

I ended up just changing them to a 2 way setup instead to be safe. Then at some point when that part of the house gets remodeled the electrical can get redone.

@MRobi I suspect we are having a miscommunication with terminology. Per Inovelli’s wiring diagrams, the neutral terminal on the Aux is used, but it is fed line power from the Dimmer’s line terminal. On the Dimmer, the Neutral terminal remains unused. One of my switches is in this setup currently.

@lmckenna Verify your wiring with page 12 on the wiring diagram. There can be some variation on how this looks if your line comes in at the fixture box instead of the switch box like my setup had, but the concept is the same. Although I have three wires between the dimmer and the aux, I have one of them capped off (I chose white, to keep consistent with red being traveler typically and black being line or load). If you cannot identify and match your setup to any in the wiring linked diagrams, will likely need an electrician to sort it out.

I also did find that I had to set the AC type and Switch Type parameters at both the hub AND the switch , then pulling the air gap for 10 seconds in order to get the aux switch to function. Before I completed that, the aux switch would only ever turn the light off with either paddle press, except for some rare instances.

@doublepedaldylan I stand corrected!