Help With Bedroom Light Please :)

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Gizmonster | 20:26 Fri 27th Nov 2020 | DIY
9 Answers
Our back bedroom has one light and two light switches.
One of the light switches is a traditional wall mounted switch located near the door and the other is a pull switch, located near the bed.
When I turn the light on at the wall, I can also turn it off and on using the pull switch. However, if I turn it on at the wall and then off with the pull switch, I cannot turn it back on using the wall switch - I have to switch it back on using the pull switch.
I do have a basic understanding of electrics, so could someone please explain what's going on here, so I don't have to dismantle all the switches to see what's what.
Is it a case of someone using the wrong switches (one way instead of two way??) or is it just wired up wrong ..... I know I'm going to have to dismantle it anyway to fix it, but I'd like to know what I'm dealing with first :)


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Sorry - forgot to add, I'm obviously wanting to fix things so I can turn the light on and off using either switch.
It sounds as though the wall switch feeds the pull switch, so takes priority. When the wall switch is off, the pull switch is dead. When the wall switch is on, the pull switch is in control. It sounds as though neither switch will take two-way wiring so both would have to be replaced, and wired up differently, probably including extra cable between the two.

Look at it as a switched table lamp plugged into a wall switched socket - if you turn it off at the lamp, the wall socket is already on so you can't put the table lamp on from there.
It sounds like one of the strapper wires into L1 or L2 is broken or loose, either at the pull or switch end.
One of the connection is disconnected. See if you can see it at the switch and reconnect it. Otherwise it may need rewiring.

Best thing to do is look and see how it's all wired first.
I think canary's suggestion is the right one but it could also be a faulty switch/connection as per Ryzen. The only way to be sure is to look at the switches to see if they are 1-way or 2-way. I'd start with the wall switch as its easier to get at; if that's a 1-way switch Canary is right. If that's 2-way check the pull-switch; if that's 1-way Canary is right again and if it's a 2-way there's either a wiring problem or one of the switches is faulty.
You will have to check that both switches have two way capability. Your wall switch probably will but your pull switch may not. The two switches must also be connected (either directly or, more usually, via a junction box) by triple and earth cable. You need an extra wire to facilitate the two way switching. If this upload works, here's a schematic diagram:
I've come across this a couple of times, Giz. Someone has run a cable above the ceiling from the rose to the pull switch for "convenience".
It operates as a switch ok, but not as a 2-way.
(As per Canary's post above.)

Otherwise, if it is 2-way, then I'm sure Ryzen has the answer.
Have a look inside the wall switch.
Are there 3 wires (plus earth) or only two?
Question Author
Sorry about the delay in replying - I've just had a quick look at both switches.
The pull switch has 3 wires going into it. A black wire is connected to the top connector and 2 separate red wires are connected to the bottom 2 connectors (1 wire in each connector).
The wall switch has 4 wires going into it Two red wires both connected to the top connector and a black wire and a red wire connected to the bottom 2 connectors (1 wire in each connector).
Both switches have additional earth wires as well.
Am I correct in saying that both these switches are 2 way switches and it looks like instead of wiring them up as per NJ's link, they've been lazy and fed a wire from the rose ceiling to the pull switch??
yeah I often have difficulty turning lights on and off

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