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 Load Sense - What does it do?

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bretta Posted - 12/04/2017 : 3:51:28 PM
I have a bunch of 2663-222 On/Off outlets. They have "load sense" capability.

What I thought load sense did: Sends a signal when something connected to the outlet draws power.

What it seems to do: Turns ON the outlet (assuming it is turned off to begin with) when it senses a power draw. But, does not appear to turn it back off when the load goes away.

My version would be very handy. What I'm experiencing achieves nothing.

I was hoping to set up my washing machine so that it would turn on the hot water heater (already Insteon controlled) when the washer was turned on. I am using an ISY994i and see no way to add any load sense function to a program or scene. I can add the outlet to the hot water scene and it will turn on the heater when it turns on, but because it doesn't automatically turn off when the load goes away, it's not a viable option.

What am I missing?

Thanks.
Brett
15   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
stusviews Posted - 01/13/2018 : 2:40:18 PM
quote:
Originally posted by oberkc
I was not sure, but suspected mine does (but maybe not). Mine is one that has a power button. Mine strikes me as closer to a TV than to a lamp.


It's certainly more fun to watch a washing machine than a lamp.
oberkc Posted - 01/13/2018 : 05:16:57 AM
quote:
but washing machines don't


I was not sure, but suspected mine does (but maybe not). Mine is one that has a power button. Mine strikes me as closer to a TV than to a lamp.

quote:
My concern is that, between cycles, power is not cut, the indicators are still lit, but actual current draw is nil. So how does one determine that the washing machine is not done, but just between cycles.


Yes, but I think this could be overcome by a program(s) if really desired. Perhaps a series of programs which would power the water heater for a set time (say...40 minutes) when the outletlinc is turned on. Of course, you would have to ensure the programs don't restart the countdown "between cycles".
stusviews Posted - 01/12/2018 : 8:50:42 PM
Load sensing works for a lamp. The lamp does not need power to turn it on. Remote control TVs do, but washing machines don't.

My concern is that, between cycles, power is not cut, the indicators are still lit, but actual current draw is nil. So how does one determine that the washing machine is not done, but just between cycles.

I appreciate any endeavor to save energy. Most of the methods suggested are costly. Even it they save in the long run, one's budget doesn't always have the time to wait.

OTOH, scheduling the hot water heater to turn on based on the washing machine being turned on will help. But instead of using current draw to turn it off, schedule the hot water heater based on time.

That involves another trigger device. If you turn on the hot water when the washing machine is turned on, then the water will not be fully hot because that's the moment when the washing machine starts filling.

Depending on how you use that area, a motion sensor may work. Or, with a bit more effort, a single-button Micro Remote fastened to the wall (there's a kit for that, it looks like a standard Decora switch).

Note: you don't need hot water for the final rinse nor for the spin dry cycle.
oberkc Posted - 01/12/2018 : 6:59:59 PM
I am skeptical that a load-sensing outlet would work here. If the outlet is off, I doubt that you could use the power button on the washer to turn it (and the outlet) on. The washer requires power to be on in order to turn the washer on, no?
lilyoyo1 Posted - 01/12/2018 : 4:10:37 PM
I agree with Teken. Ensuring all you devices are as efficient as possible is where you will see the most cost savings.
EVIL Teken Posted - 01/12/2018 : 4:05:56 PM
quote:
Originally posted by bretta

quote:
Originally posted by EVIL Teken

Brett,

After reading over your initial ask I'm still confused what the long term benefit is? Can you offer more clarity and insight as to what is supposed to happen and the ultimate goal?? I ask because if the primary goal is to save energy the route you're taking isn't going to offer that outcome on a consistent basis.


Hi Teken. The desire is simply to have the hot water heater turn on when the washing machine is turned on. Ideally, the outletlinc senses the draw from the washing machine, which triggers a program that turns the hot water heater on for, say, 30 minutes. Stus concern about the machine's draw varying during it's cycles would not be an issue in this scenario.

The intent is to replace hot water used by the wash cycle.

It will save power in a round about way. Currently, the hot water heater runs once per day, for 1 hour. That is enough for showers and hand washing, but use of washing machine (or dishwasher, same desired action for that) can reduce hot water enough that one ends up with a cold shower. The option is to either manually turn the hot water on, which requires an action that can be unreliable, or to program the hot water heater to turn on at other times of the day. So, on a day when no washing is done, the hot water heater runs more than it needs to.

I can do a program that will turn the hot water heater on when we turn on the washing machine outlet, and another program that turns off the washing machine outlet off after x time. It will solve the issue, but it would have been simpler if the Insteon product could report the load. However, for the dishwasher, which has it's outlet behind it in an inaccessible location, and an electronic control panel, this method is impossible, so I will have to re-think this.



If energy saving is the primary driver than a change of lifestyle, appliances, and chemicals are the solution.

- Front loading clothes washer = Uses less water
- HE Cold Detergents = Uses less fluid and cleans using cold water
- Full Loads: Ensuring all loads are full for both wash & dry
- Hang Dry: Scheduling and timing your chores to allow ample *Air Drying
- Reduce the HWT to the lowest setting while balancing hot water needs and use case. Always measure at the tap to ensure its correct to avoid scalding of little ones.
- ToU: If your utility offers you the ability to go on to a Time of Use electrical rate. This may offer you the ability to save as long as you're committed to schedule your loads when costs are lower etc.
- Insulate: If your HWT is older than ten years either replace or insulate the unit by over the counter insulating blankets. You can make your own which is essentially foiled bubble wrap found at any hardware store.
- Smart Management: If your budget allows you can install a smart hot water heater monitor. The Aquanta smart energy manager allows you to schedule, manage, and track energy and consumption.
stusviews Posted - 01/09/2018 : 9:41:08 PM
quote:
Originally posted by bretta
Stus concern about the machine's draw varying during it's cycles would not be an issue in this scenario.


My concern was not at all that the current draw varies, which I agree is a nonissue, but that modern washing machines draw virtually no current at all between cycles, which does matter. Is the washing machine done or just between cycles?

Older washing machines do not have this feature.
bretta Posted - 01/09/2018 : 7:04:34 PM
quote:
Originally posted by EVIL Teken

Brett,

After reading over your initial ask I'm still confused what the long term benefit is? Can you offer more clarity and insight as to what is supposed to happen and the ultimate goal?? I ask because if the primary goal is to save energy the route you're taking isn't going to offer that outcome on a consistent basis.


Hi Teken. The desire is simply to have the hot water heater turn on when the washing machine is turned on. Ideally, the outletlinc senses the draw from the washing machine, which triggers a program that turns the hot water heater on for, say, 30 minutes. Stus concern about the machine's draw varying during it's cycles would not be an issue in this scenario.

The intent is to replace hot water used by the wash cycle.

It will save power in a round about way. Currently, the hot water heater runs once per day, for 1 hour. That is enough for showers and hand washing, but use of washing machine (or dishwasher, same desired action for that) can reduce hot water enough that one ends up with a cold shower. The option is to either manually turn the hot water on, which requires an action that can be unreliable, or to program the hot water heater to turn on at other times of the day. So, on a day when no washing is done, the hot water heater runs more than it needs to.

I can do a program that will turn the hot water heater on when we turn on the washing machine outlet, and another program that turns off the washing machine outlet off after x time. It will solve the issue, but it would have been simpler if the Insteon product could report the load. However, for the dishwasher, which has it's outlet behind it in an inaccessible location, and an electronic control panel, this method is impossible, so I will have to re-think this.
lilyoyo1 Posted - 12/06/2017 : 12:44:29 PM
quote:
Originally posted by bretta

BLH, thanks for the info.

I gotta wonder what the point is behind the load sense then. Seems like a total waste of time.



Stusviews gave his use case for load sensing but I wanted to add one as well.

Many people use the outlets for lamps and things of that nature. Whether its guest or other family members, they have a habit of using lamps manually. Should a person have software or some other form of control that turns off the device, a person would not be able to turn their lamps on manually. Load sense allows that to happen.
EVIL Teken Posted - 12/06/2017 : 10:36:18 AM
Brett,

After reading over your initial ask I'm still confused what the long term benefit is? Can you offer more clarity and insight as to what is supposed to happen and the ultimate goal?? I ask because if the primary goal is to save energy the route you're taking isn't going to offer that outcome on a consistent basis.
stusviews Posted - 12/04/2017 : 10:02:48 PM
A difficulty with modern washing machine in conjunction with a current sensor is that between cycles, the current drawn is next to nothing.
bretta Posted - 12/04/2017 : 7:55:48 PM
Yeah, and I can do the same, but a washing machine can run for 15 minutes or a hour. Would rather have it only turn the hot water on while it's running, instead of having to choose the max.
I like the idea of current sensing. Just like the outlet should do...., so will pick up some of the CT-800s. I already have an I/O unit with PLM, just haven't set it up yet.

I have a lot of insteon products and I've seen them do some pretty stupid things, but why the hell would they not use the sense to turn it off as well as on? Seems pretty short sighted.
stusviews Posted - 12/04/2017 : 7:32:18 PM
I have a double coffeemaker (Cucina Pro). The coffeemaker does not include a timer, it must be turned off manually.

There are no double coffeemakers that do have a timer feature. The solution was to install an Insteon Outlet with sense. My Insteon manager (ISY) automatically turns off the machine after a specified time. All I need to do is flip the coffee maker switch off, then to activate the outlet.
bretta Posted - 12/04/2017 : 6:47:12 PM
BLH, thanks for the info.

I gotta wonder what the point is behind the load sense then. Seems like a total waste of time.
BLH Posted - 12/04/2017 : 4:10:23 PM
What you found is correct.
If the outlet is off and you toggle the load from off to on. The outlet will turn on.
Turning the load off will not cause the outlet to go off.

You could use a current sensor to trigger an I/O Linc or the external input on a Open/Closed sensor. It would send an on or off to the ISY994i.

http://cocoontech.com/forums/page/articles/_/tutorials/home-automation-tutorials/how-to-monitor-the-status-of-your-appliances-using-current-sensors-r58

The external box shown near the bottom. Doesn't even require you to open the 120 volt appliance. I have seen other current sensors used by some but don't know their part number.
I have tested a CT800 myself.

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