3 way switches question

this ones for the electricians out there. Two wall switches, one at the bottom of the stairs, one at the top. Ceiling light at the top of stairs. Light off, switch at bottom of stairs down position, switch at top in the on position, I turn light on from downstairs, go up, turn switch off at top of stairs,light stays on. I thought the correct way was to beable to turn light on from first floor, go upstairs, turn light off and visa-versa?? correct or not correct, could one of these switches be wired backwards? previous owner did mess around with them at one time.
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My first guess is that he put in normal single throw switches. You need double throw (three way switches) for that circuit: There are dozens of sites that explain that circuit:
http://www.misterfixit.com/3wayswch.htm
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Yup they are wired wrong. You have a "traveller" on a common screw. There are lots of schemes to get them right but I like to just use a meter and positively identify each wire at each end. I'm sure this thread will go on for days and you will get lots of tips but just be aware there are a couple of ways to wire a 3way setup. One is where the power comes in one end and the loght goes out the other. The other way is where one of the switches is on a 3 wire "leg" out and back. You will only have 3 wires in one of the boxes and all of them will be on the switch. The first thing you have to figure out is what you have.
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