Yet anothe 3-way issue...Gen 2 Red Dimmer + Aux Switch

Hi, I have an issue and haven’t seen any existing threads that are the same or similar enough to help me solve. I’m trying to use a Gen 2 Red Dimmer and an Aux switch in a 3-way configuration, to control my kitchen LED cans (6x). Here are the setup details:

  • Aux switch is the GE 46199, which is listed as supported
  • Neutral wire is present in both switch boxes
  • Wiring config I have used is the "Line/Load in Separate Boxes (Neutral Wire Setup)
  • 2nd version of this wiring diagram, where the Aux switch is “first” in line from the electrical panel
  • Inovelli switch has Params 21 and 22 set properly (values of 1 and 2, respectively, for Neutral wire and 3-way Momentary switch)
  • Switch params have been verified using Hubitat hub, using both the Inovelli custom driver and the Basic Z-Wave Tool
  • Inovelli switch firmware is showing (in Hubitat):
    ** firmware : 1.57
    ** firmware0 : 1.57
    ** firmware1 : 1.45

Here’s the problem: neither switch turns the lights on. The Inovelli has power to it, and the LED bar lights up: LEDs go up/down according to paddle presses. The Aux switch also is talking to the Inovelli: paddle presses on the Aux cause the Inovelli LED bar to respond accordingly. But, the lights never come on.

I know the Inovelli can control these lights–as I was wiring things up, at one point I had the Inovelli wired along with one of the existing dumb switches, and the Inovelli was turning the lights on/off and dimming them. At that point, I had to have the dumb switch in the “on” position for the Inovelli to work. I wasn’t paying close attention to this config, however, as I knew it was not my desired end state.

Has anyone seen this before? I’m certain it’s some kind of user error on my part, but I can’t figure out what. Please let me know if I can provide any additional information. Thanks!

My guess would be that the load terminal on the Inovelli is not connected to the lights. The wiring is not connected to the load somehow. Maybe through a junction they wires aren’t connected to pass the load power all the way to the lights?

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This makes sense, but I’m not sure how to confirm or test this. At one point I had the black wires in the Inovelli box reversed, with the load wire coming from the Aux box connected to the load terminal on the Inovelli, and the other black wire connected to the Inovelli line terminal. With this config, the Inovelli didn’t have power to it (no LEDs at all), obviously, and of course the lights didn’t turn on in this config either. The Aux box is definitely where the power comes in from the panel–I had all wires disconnected and found voltage only on one black wire in the Aux box. I tied all 3 wires in the Aux box together and then found voltage on one black wire and one red wire (the traveler, I think) in the Inovelli box. This told me the other black wire in the Inovelli box (with no voltage on it) must be the load wire coming out of that box.

Any other ideas on this? I guess I can try reversing the switch placement: putting Inovelli “first” in line from the panel and the Aux second. I don’t see how/why this would work though. And, I’m really hoping to have it the other way around, because the primary box is in an undesirable location for me to see the beautiful LED strip.

Both boxes have a 2-conductor black/white cable and a 3 conductor black/white/red cable?

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Yes, that’s correct. I can’t get pics right now, but in the primary box (with aux switch), the 2 black wires are nutted together (not connected to the switch), the white is pigtailed into the neutral terminal and the red goes to the traveler terminal. In the secondary box (with Inovelli dimmer), the load from primary is connected to the switch line terminal, the other black is connected to switch load terminal, white is pigtailed into neutral terminal, and red into traveler terminal. Grounds are properly connected in both boxes too.

It sounds right.

As a test in the secondary box you could try connecting the black from primary box to the load black and see if the lights come on.

I just noticed you said with line and load swapped on the Inovelli it was dead. But, it should have come on because the will power up when that is done. So maybe there is something between that box and the lights.

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Ok, I did that test (connected the two black wires in the secondary box), and the lights came on. I’ve read that there have been some issues with params 21 and 22 not saving properly when set from the hub. I don’t think this is my problem, because the values look correct using both drivers (Inovelli custom and Basic Z-wave tool). I’ll try to verify those settings on the switch itself, but I have a hard time seeing when the LED switches from green to yellow.

What else could be causing this?

Update: I confirmed param 21 and 22 settings at the switch. They were and are correct.

Update2: Since the lights come on when the black wires are connected together (and not connected to the Inovelli), and since the Inovelli itself didn’t power up when I had the line and load reversed, could that mean the load terminal on the switch is just bad? Is this even possible (for just the load terminal to be defective)? It’s late here now, but I’ll try to use a different Inovelli dimmer tomorrow to test this.

Read through this and hopefully didn’t miss something . . .

Sometimes it’s best to start at the beginning. How did you first determine which of the the two boxes was the “primary” box i.e the box to which power is being fed to? When you first wired with a dumb switch and the Inovelli only worked the dumb switch in one position, that suggests that that power (line) might be fed from the box that had the dumb switch in it. So what you are thinking is the line may be the load, and vice versa.

The line will be fed into one of the two boxes via the 2-wire. I would start with the box you think is the primary. Separate the two blacks and test between the black from the 2-wire and the white neutrals (bundled ok here) to see if you have a constant 120VAC. If you don’t this is the load side.

If that’s the case, repeat on the other side. Test between the disconnected black and the white from the 2-wire. Whichever side has a constant 120VAC with the 2-wires disconnected will be the line side.

@Bry, I described how I determined this in an earlier post.

This is resolved. The Inovelli switch is defective. I wired up another one in the 3 way config (in secondary box with aux switch in primary) and it worked immediately. Both switches do their thing. I then wired up the defective switch elsewhere, in a single pole config. Didn’t work at all. I then wired another Inovelli dimmer in that single pole location, and it worked immediately. I’ll contact Inovelli for warranty support.

@PJF, thanks for all the replies.


Good to hear. It very strongly pointed to a bad switch once you tried jumping the wires together.