Two way switch, or three way switch?

Switches are classified according to the arrangement of their contacts in electronics. Electricians installing building wiring use different nomenclature, such as “one-way”, “two-way”, “three-way” and “four-way” switches, which have different meanings in North American and British cultural regions. If we say one-way switch in British cultural regions, it will be described as two-way switch in North American regions; and two-way switch will be described as three way switch and so forth.

As a result, sometimes people will make misunderstanding about them. For example, people from USA say two-way light switch actually is called one-way light switch in UK. And if they don’t know the reason, they will get into a fight.

Table below is to distinguish the difference between them. (Pole means separate circuit which are controlled by a switch. Throws means separate position that the switch can adopt.)


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