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Travasaurus
Starting Member

USA
10 Posts

Posted - 06/12/2018 :  5:47:21 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I have had X-10 equipment for many years now with no problems. I have a couple of X-10 Pro HR12A remote controllers and garden-variety X-10 Pro PLW01 wall switch modules in every room. I'm slowly changing-out all my incandescent bulbs for LEDs. I first swapped-out the ones in my office for GE LED 10 watt (100 watt equivalent) dimmable bulbs (they're being used with "SocketRockets" for whatever that's worth) and they worked just fine, including being able to dim them. However, I just bought a number of MaxLite G25 dimmable "bathroom bulbs" and as soon as I screwed them in they immediately came on, without me turning them on with the X-10 remote control. Plus, they came on at only half (or less) of their 100 watt strength; they were very dim, to say the least. The only way I could turn them off was with the little manual slider switch at the bottom of the larger "pushbutton" one on the wall module. At this point the remote is totally useless since it won't allow me to turn the bathroom lights off or on, much-less dim or brighten them. So what gives and how do I fix the problem? These are new state-of-the-art dimmable G25 bulbs that should work without a hitch. Hopefully somebody can provide a "quick fix" for me here.

BLH
Advanced Member

5750 Posts

Posted - 06/13/2018 :  04:14:59 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
LM15A Socket Rockets do not dim. They screw into a lamps socket to automate it. They should go On and Off with LED bulbs. As long as they do not generate power line noise or absorb the X10 signals when On.

Do you have the old SL575 or PLM02 socket module? I believe they do dim. Since they do not steal power through the load. You would have a better chance for a dimmable LED bulb to work.

The PLW01 two wire wall switches are made for Incandescent loads only. As they steal power through the loads. The symptoms you are seeing with LED bulbs are some of the typical things. Sometimes you can find a brand and model LED bulb that works OK. Some have kept one incandescent bulb in the circuit to help supply the needed current the PLW01 need for power. The X10Pro XPDI3 shows it can be used with dimmable LED bulbs. Though it needed a Neutral power connection and is decorator style paddle type.

You may want to ask in the X10 Forums if you have not yet. They may have added tips.
http://forums.x10.com/index.php

Edited by - BLH on 06/13/2018 07:17:22 AM
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Geo
Advanced Member

Canada
785 Posts

Posted - 06/13/2018 :  06:51:32 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This topic has been addressed on this website many times. You cannot use leading edge (all old style dimmers) with LED and CFL lights. You need trailing edge dimmers. They are designated on their packaging as "LED and CFL compatible".

GJN
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Travasaurus
Starting Member

USA
10 Posts

Posted - 06/13/2018 :  10:41:53 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I found the original box and it was a Radio Shack X-10 device labeled "Lamp Socket Dimmer Module" (it didn't have an X-10 model number on it), which I guess was the forerunner of the "SocketRocket". I don't necessarily need the dimming capability in my office so would I be better off with the newer-style SocketRocket instead?
As for the bulbs, the MaxLite G25 is the only LED bulb (of this style) which is 10 watt (100 watt equivalent) and dimmable that is available on the market, and I need the extra bright light output in the bathroom (plus, they were special order and pretty pricey too, so I'm stuck with 'em). Since this is an older house the wiring is 2-wire, so I don't have a "neutral" wire available; can you suggest an X-10 wall switch that will work with LED dimmable bulbs and is set-up for a 2-wire connection? I don't want to jump-ship to Insteon (or any of its high-dollar competitors) but I will if I have to, to get the bathroom lights to work and to dim as well.
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Travasaurus
Starting Member

USA
10 Posts

Posted - 06/13/2018 :  10:49:10 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Geo

This topic has been addressed on this website many times. You cannot use leading edge (all old style dimmers) with LED and CFL lights. You need trailing edge dimmers. They are designated on their packaging as "LED and CFL compatible".


Can you suggest an X-10 Trailing Edge dimmer which will work with a 2-wire setup? As I mentioned in my previous post, I have an older house and it doesn't have a "neutral" wire available. I don't want to jump-ship to another (much more expensive) brand but I will if I have to, as long as the remote control that goes with it will be backwardly-compatible with all my other X-10 equipment. However, I would like to stick with the X-10 stuff if at all possible.
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BLH
Advanced Member

5750 Posts

Posted - 06/13/2018 :  12:46:58 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I saw your post over on the X10 Forums. So you may get added information there. I am Brian H on their forums.

As far as I know. X10 makes no Trailing Edge modules. I have not tested a LM15A and the latest model LED bulbs. So I can't say if all combinations would work.

Insteon module would also not work for you. All of them use a Neutral power connection in the switch box. Except the 2474D two wire switch and it also is restricted to incandescent only. They have also dropped X10 support from most of the present models. I believe the 2466 ToggleLinc still has X10 support. Though needs a neutral and would not be trailing edge.

Edited by - BLH on 06/13/2018 1:27:59 PM
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lilyoyo1
Senior Member

237 Posts

Posted - 06/13/2018 :  8:01:20 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Newer LED bulbs have been designed to work with standard dimmers without issue though performance varies. With that said; all of the 2 wire setups that I've seen (zwave and insteon) require incandescent loads to help power them so neither would not work for you in your case.

If having control over your lights is important, I would try to return the bulbs and stick with incandescent if you can. Another option would require rewiring your fixture with an insteon micromodule and replacing your existing switch with an insteon dimmer. Unless you understand wiring, I would recommend having an electrician wire it for you.
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Travasaurus
Starting Member

USA
10 Posts

Posted - 06/14/2018 :  01:31:10 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by lilyoyo1

Newer LED bulbs have been designed to work with standard dimmers without issue though performance varies. With that said; all of the 2 wire setups that I've seen (zwave and insteon) require incandescent loads to help power them so neither would not work for you in your case.
If having control over your lights is important, I would try to return the bulbs and stick with incandescent if you can. Another option would require rewiring your fixture with an insteon micromodule and replacing your existing switch with an insteon dimmer. Unless you understand wiring, I would recommend having an electrician wire it for you.


Well, that would kind of be like shoveling sand against tide, since incandescent bulbs are a dying breed and are unquestionably on their way out. Plus, I never found any "bathroom bulbs" over 60 watts (I've long needed 100 watt) so that's a big bust to begin with. Since these MaxLite G25 (and just about every other mid-to-upper-range bulb on the market these days) offer a "dimmable" option then obviously it can't be that big of a deal to install one with the correct equipment which will allow it to "operate as advertised". Also, there have to be 1000s if not 1,000,000s of people out there who still have the older 2-wire electrical cabling in their houses and I'm pretty sure they're not all going to rewire them just to run modern day X-10 or similar technologies. Knowing this, somebody, somewhere has surely made a "bolt-on" device that you can use to dim modern day LED lights without having to make the local electricians rich in the process, so at least point me in the right direction of some components which can make this happen in short order without having to gut the entire house, or install "neutral" wires in every lighting fixture in every stinking room of the house. What I need here are shortcuts, workarounds and quick fixes that will save the day and allow me to have dimmable LED bulbs in my bathroom (and other rooms, eventually). I mean come on, this stuff has been around for 30 years or so, so it can't be "rocket science" to make it keep up with modern-day technology, right? Thanks and standing by...
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BLH
Advanced Member

5750 Posts

Posted - 06/14/2018 :  05:28:50 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I posted some added information over in the X10 forums.
About a UPB load resistor. That may shunt enough current around the LED bulbs to allow it to function. Normally used on their UPB switches with LED load issues.
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lilyoyo1
Senior Member

237 Posts

Posted - 06/14/2018 :  07:18:42 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Travasaurus

quote:
Originally posted by lilyoyo1

Newer LED bulbs have been designed to work with standard dimmers without issue though performance varies. With that said; all of the 2 wire setups that I've seen (zwave and insteon) require incandescent loads to help power them so neither would not work for you in your case.
If having control over your lights is important, I would try to return the bulbs and stick with incandescent if you can. Another option would require rewiring your fixture with an insteon micromodule and replacing your existing switch with an insteon dimmer. Unless you understand wiring, I would recommend having an electrician wire it for you.


Well, that would kind of be like shoveling sand against tide, since incandescent bulbs are a dying breed and are unquestionably on their way out. Plus, I never found any "bathroom bulbs" over 60 watts (I've long needed 100 watt) so that's a big bust to begin with. Since these MaxLite G25 (and just about every other mid-to-upper-range bulb on the market these days) offer a "dimmable" option then obviously it can't be that big of a deal to install one with the correct equipment which will allow it to "operate as advertised". Also, there have to be 1000s if not 1,000,000s of people out there who still have the older 2-wire electrical cabling in their houses and I'm pretty sure they're not all going to rewire them just to run modern day X-10 or similar technologies. Knowing this, somebody, somewhere has surely made a "bolt-on" device that you can use to dim modern day LED lights without having to make the local electricians rich in the process, so at least point me in the right direction of some components which can make this happen in short order without having to gut the entire house, or install "neutral" wires in every lighting fixture in every stinking room of the house. What I need here are shortcuts, workarounds and quick fixes that will save the day and allow me to have dimmable LED bulbs in my bathroom (and other rooms, eventually). I mean come on, this stuff has been around for 30 years or so, so it can't be "rocket science" to make it keep up with modern-day technology, right? Thanks and standing by...




HA has been around for 30 years when the technology that was used was compatible and readily available. Unfortunately modern technology is made for modern times. In your case, there isn't a plug and play option out there. There are options. It's just a matter of whether you want to use them or not.

BLH gave an option that way work using a resistor. If that doesn't work, you will need to use a micro module wired in your fixture and an insteon switch to control it.
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Travasaurus
Starting Member

USA
10 Posts

Posted - 06/14/2018 :  1:08:53 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by lilyoyo1

quote:
Originally posted by Travasaurus

quote:
Originally posted by lilyoyo1

Newer LED bulbs have been designed to work with standard dimmers without issue though performance varies. With that said; all of the 2 wire setups that I've seen (zwave and insteon) require incandescent loads to help power them so neither would not work for you in your case.
If having control over your lights is important, I would try to return the bulbs and stick with incandescent if you can. Another option would require rewiring your fixture with an insteon micromodule and replacing your existing switch with an insteon dimmer. Unless you understand wiring, I would recommend having an electrician wire it for you.


Well, that would kind of be like shoveling sand against tide, since incandescent bulbs are a dying breed and are unquestionably on their way out. Plus, I never found any "bathroom bulbs" over 60 watts (I've long needed 100 watt) so that's a big bust to begin with. Since these MaxLite G25 (and just about every other mid-to-upper-range bulb on the market these days) offer a "dimmable" option then obviously it can't be that big of a deal to install one with the correct equipment which will allow it to "operate as advertised". Also, there have to be 1000s if not 1,000,000s of people out there who still have the older 2-wire electrical cabling in their houses and I'm pretty sure they're not all going to rewire them just to run modern day X-10 or similar technologies. Knowing this, somebody, somewhere has surely made a "bolt-on" device that you can use to dim modern day LED lights without having to make the local electricians rich in the process, so at least point me in the right direction of some components which can make this happen in short order without having to gut the entire house, or install "neutral" wires in every lighting fixture in every stinking room of the house. What I need here are shortcuts, workarounds and quick fixes that will save the day and allow me to have dimmable LED bulbs in my bathroom (and other rooms, eventually). I mean come on, this stuff has been around for 30 years or so, so it can't be "rocket science" to make it keep up with modern-day technology, right? Thanks and standing by...


HA has been around for 30 years when the technology that was used was compatible and readily available. Unfortunately modern technology is made for modern times. In your case, there isn't a plug and play option out there. There are options. It's just a matter of whether you want to use them or not.
BLH gave an option that way work using a resistor. If that doesn't work, you will need to use a micro module wired in your fixture and an insteon switch to control it.


Sorry if I came off as being a little grouchy there; it was really more like frustration that a technology that I've used for decades now has suddenly become obsolete with the advent of something as trivial as a new kind of light bulb. You'd think that the guys who came up with (what was once a leading-edge) technology would've kept up with changing times enough to make it backwardly-compatible with older stuff, i.e. 2-wire house wiring. LED bulbs will be completely ubiquitous in the very near future so accessories like X-10 and the like must be made to keep up with such technology. I very much appreciate the help and assistance I've been given here and on the X-10 Forum; it's kind of like that "Bearer of bad news" syndrome or some-such...
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BLH
Advanced Member

5750 Posts

Posted - 06/14/2018 :  1:17:39 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I had a chance to piece a set of resistors together. That where a heavy enough wattage. 12,500 Ohms was as close as I could get.
It did not work. Forget the resistor assembly I posted earlier.
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avion
Starting Member

USA
10 Posts

Posted - 06/20/2018 :  3:46:43 PM  Show Profile  Visit avion's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Hi There,
There is a simple fix. Visit https://ldsdimming.com. The other fix is the newest X10 Controller that has the finest iPhone app user interface in the industry. EZ and elegant. Check it out here on SmartHome:. AVION BTX10 BLUETOOTH SMART CONTROLLER AND iphone
APP. avioninnovative.com
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Travasaurus
Starting Member

USA
10 Posts

Posted - 06/21/2018 :  02:07:54 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by avion

Hi There,
There is a simple fix. Visit https://ldsdimming.com. The other fix is the newest X10 Controller that has the finest iPhone app user interface in the industry. EZ and elegant. Check it out here on SmartHome:. AVION BTX10 BLUETOOTH SMART CONTROLLER AND iphone
APP. avioninnovative.com


I keep getting this as a rock-solid suggestion but I'm hoping that somebody who has actually used this solution can give me a good recommendation on it. I have given up the ghost and decided to get a "neutral" line installed. I welcome your informed input...
https://www.x10.com/x10-pro/switches/xpdi3-dimmer-120-vac-500w-inductive.html
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BLH
Advanced Member

5750 Posts

Posted - 06/21/2018 :  09:58:46 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
They look like a different brand of resistors you add across the LED bulb. With an X10 two wire dimmer. It has to be in the fixture. I gave you my tests in the X10 forums. I went as low as 4.7K resistor. That is 3 watts 25mA. It did not work with a WS12A two wire dimmer and all the assorted dimmable LED bulbs I had. Some did not flicker but did not respond to X10 commands, not go On but off. Pulse, flicker or go 100% off.

If someone gives you a good report on the devices. Make sure they are testing with a two wire dimmer they steals power through the load. Not the ones with neutral power to the switch shown in their insulation diagrams.

Edited by - BLH on 06/21/2018 10:01:02 AM
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Travasaurus
Starting Member

USA
10 Posts

Posted - 06/22/2018 :  12:29:48 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by BLH

They look like a different brand of resistors you add across the LED bulb. With an X10 two wire dimmer. It has to be in the fixture. I gave you my tests in the X10 forums. I went as low as 4.7K resistor. That is 3 watts 25mA. It did not work with a WS12A two wire dimmer and all the assorted dimmable LED bulbs I had. Some did not flicker but did not respond to X10 commands, not go On but off. Pulse, flicker or go 100% off.
If someone gives you a good report on the devices. Make sure they are testing with a two wire dimmer they steals power through the load. Not the ones with neutral power to the switch shown in their insulation diagrams.


Listen, I appreciate your kind input, suggestions and research regarding using a 2-wire solution but it appears that there just isn't a practical one available. I have now moved on to resigning myself to the fact that I'll have to get a "neutral" wire installed and use some kind of switch (like the one I linked to) which is specifically made for dimming LED bulbs. I'm just looking for a report from somebody who's used one (or more) of these things successfully (or that has some kind of manufacturer's guarantee that it will work) so I'll know which one to get. There have to be thousands of people out there who use dimmable LED bulbs in a 3-wire configuration (which apparently is the "norm" now) but I'm having a Heck of a time trying to get some "hard info" on which ones truly "work as advertised". Hopefully somebody who's had some experience with some brand or another will wander by here and give me the benefit of their "trial run" with these 3-wire switches.
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BLH
Advanced Member

5750 Posts

Posted - 06/22/2018 :  04:02:35 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Adding the Neutral sounds like a good way to go in your case.

The XPDI3 does have a input for controlling it with a XPSS slave switch. So even if you have a three way. You should be able to control it from both locations.

I posted the resistor data again. To reply to the link for the modules with resistors in them. So others with X10 two wire switches have some information in the resistor modules and if they worked.

Keep us informed here or on the X10 Forums.

Edited by - BLH on 06/22/2018 04:05:58 AM
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Geo
Advanced Member

Canada
785 Posts

Posted - 06/22/2018 :  06:40:05 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Actually, the solution is trivial, but since it very likely violates the electrical code I won't describe it.

GJN
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Travasaurus
Starting Member

USA
10 Posts

Posted - 06/22/2018 :  10:58:07 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Geo

Actually, the solution is trivial, but since it very likely violates the electrical code I won't describe it.


Now you're teasing us (when it might really help someone). Just because you mention it does not mean you're endorsing it. Besides, electrical codes are different from place to place, so it may or may not violate any given set. Go ahead and put it out there, please (if for "information purposes only"). It certainly can't hurt anything to read about an idea...
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Tfitzpatri8
Administrator

USA
10596 Posts

Posted - 06/22/2018 :  5:59:11 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
If you want to share illegal wiring practices, please exchange contact info and chat offline. No sense dragging Smarthome into a lawsuit after someone gets a lethal electric shock or accidentally burns their house down because of unsafe wiring practices.

Volunteer Moderator & Home Automation Enthusiast
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x10guru
New Member

17 Posts

Posted - 06/23/2018 :  2:53:27 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
To review:

You have a bathroom vanity light fixture with 3 light bulb sockets,
and the neutral wire is at the fixture, not at the switch.

You were using an X10 PLW01 wall switch with incandescent bulbs,
controlled by an X10 HR12A remote.

Then you changed to MaxLite G25 LED dimmable 10W (100W equivalent) bulbs,
and now the X10 PLW01 wall switch doesn’t work with the LED bulbs.

So now you are having an electrician run a new wire to get neutral at the switch,
and want to know if the X10 XPDI3 dimmer switch will work.

Specs for the XPDI3 say minimum 40W, and since you only have 30W, THIS IS LIKELY A PROBLEM. The XPDI3 is not a true rocker, it is a pushbutton dimmer switch with a paddle that overlays a single pushbutton hidden beneath the paddle. The XPDI3 is a receiver only … it responds to X10 commands and controls the connected load, but it does not transmit X10 signals when the paddle is pressed.

A better choice is the Insteon 2477D Dimmer Switch. The current production version, Revision 8.2, still supports X10, and it even supports X10 Scenes. It is a true rocker dimmer switch. It has LEDs to indicate the level of brightness of the load. It is both an X10 receiver and an X10 transmitter. It can be set to have any default level of load brightness, and any ramp rate.

Furthermore, since you are using an HR12A remote, with the 2477D’s X10 Scene capability, you could have different buttons on the remote correspond to different levels of brightness. For example, using an “A” housecode remote, you could have button 1 (A1) correspond to full brightness, button 2 (A2) correspond to 70% brightness, and button 3 (A3) correspond to 20% brightness. You will need an X10 Maxi-Controller (or equivalent controller) to set up the X10 addresses in the 2477D.

I have a 2477D Rev 7.8, wired to a fixture with 3 Cree 4Flow LED dimmable 6W (40W equivalent) bulbs. I’m using the 2477D in X10 mode only (not Insteon mode), and I also have an X10 Scene address set in it. It works perfectly.
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Travasaurus
Starting Member

USA
10 Posts

Posted - 06/23/2018 :  7:37:15 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by x10guru

To review:
You have a bathroom vanity light fixture with 3 light bulb sockets,
and the neutral wire is at the fixture, not at the switch.
You were using an X10 PLW01 wall switch with incandescent bulbs,
controlled by an X10 HR12A remote.
Then you changed to MaxLite G25 LED dimmable 10W (100W equivalent) bulbs,
and now the X10 PLW01 wall switch doesn’t work with the LED bulbs.
So now you are having an electrician run a new wire to get neutral at the switch,
and want to know if the X10 XPDI3 dimmer switch will work.
Specs for the XPDI3 say minimum 40W, and since you only have 30W, THIS IS LIKELY A PROBLEM. The XPDI3 is not a true rocker, it is a pushbutton dimmer switch with a paddle that overlays a single pushbutton hidden beneath the paddle. The XPDI3 is a receiver only … it responds to X10 commands and controls the connected load, but it does not transmit X10 signals when the paddle is pressed.
A better choice is the Insteon 2477D Dimmer Switch. The current production version, Revision 8.2, still supports X10, and it even supports X10 Scenes. It is a true rocker dimmer switch. It has LEDs to indicate the level of brightness of the load. It is both an X10 receiver and an X10 transmitter. It can be set to have any default level of load brightness, and any ramp rate.
Furthermore, since you are using an HR12A remote, with the 2477D’s X10 Scene capability, you could have different buttons on the remote correspond to different levels of brightness. For example, using an “A” housecode remote, you could have button 1 (A1) correspond to full brightness, button 2 (A2) correspond to 70% brightness, and button 3 (A3) correspond to 20% brightness. You will need an X10 Maxi-Controller (or equivalent controller) to set up the X10 addresses in the 2477D.
I have a 2477D Rev 7.8, wired to a fixture with 3 Cree 4Flow LED dimmable 6W (40W equivalent) bulbs. I’m using the 2477D in X10 mode only (not Insteon mode), and I also have an X10 Scene address set in it. It works perfectly.


Well this is perhaps the answer I've long been looking for, but I need to slightly correct the narrative so you'll have my precise scenario. I do not have a neutral wire anywhere in the house including the bathroom; I plan on having an electrician install one at the switch when I get this thing nailed down. This is the only incorrect assumption you made in your recap of my situation.
It never dawned on me as regards the 10-watt LED bulbs and the minimum requirement of the XPDI3 X-10 switch. I got an extra MaxLite G25 bulb just so I could have a spare, meaning I have 4 total. For a very few bucks I can get a 4-bulb bathroom light fixture identical to the one I have now, save for the additional socket. Given that I can currently get the XPDI3 on sale for $25 what would you think of going that route (4 10-watt LED bulbs and the XPDI3 switch) as a cheap alternative to what you proposed? I know the Insteon dimmer switch is technically superior but it's also 50 bucks, plus shipping & handling. I would come out a little cheaper and I could also buy a 2nd XPDI3 switch to have as a backup for the price of the 2477D switch alone. I don't want to be "penny-wise & pound-foolish" here but having guaranteed X-10 compatibility all the way around is a plus, or so it would seem. Also, this way (I assume) I can continue to use my HR12A remote controllers as well. (As a side note, when I looked-up the X-10 Maxi-Controller on the SmartHome website it said it was unavailable https://www.smarthome.com/x10-maxi-controller.html. No question that the Insteon solution gives you more of an ability to "fine-tune" the amount of dimness but as long as I can get the lights down to about 10% brightness I'm okay. The purpose here (just in case anybody was wondering) is to use this as a kind of dimly lit "nightlight" in the bathroom such that when the door opens I don't get a blast of 100-watt light in the middle of the night. I think there was some question as to why I'd want to have the option of dimming a bathroom light, so there you have it.
I await your further comments; your original analysis was spot-on and very much appreciated.
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x10guru
New Member

17 Posts

Posted - 06/23/2018 :  10:32:38 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
By definition the supply wire (black) is called the hot, the return wire (white) is called the neutral, and the bare copper wire is the ground. Very old homes may not have been wired with the ground wire. You must be confusing the neutral and the ground when you mistakenly say your home does not have any neutral wires.

If in fact you do not have ground wiring in the home, you should strongly consider having an electrician run ground wiring to the outlet boxes in the kitchen, laundry, and bathrooms and then have grounded GFCI outlets installed in these locations.

Why do you think you need X10 control of the bathroom vanity light?

Why not just use a non-X10 dimmer switch that works with LED’s, one that doesn’t need a neutral wire at the switch? (Such as the Lutron Maestro C.L Dimmer MACL-153M $24.60 on Amazon).

Why not just plug an LED nightlight into an outlet in the bathroom?
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lilyoyo1
Senior Member

237 Posts

Posted - 06/24/2018 :  09:08:50 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by x10guru

By definition the supply wire (black) is called the hot, the return wire (white) is called the neutral, and the bare copper wire is the ground. Very old homes may not have been wired with the ground wire. You must be confusing the neutral and the ground when you mistakenly say your home does not have any neutral wires.

If in fact you do not have ground wiring in the home, you should strongly consider having an electrician run ground wiring to the outlet boxes in the kitchen, laundry, and bathrooms and then have grounded GFCI outlets installed in these locations.

Why do you think you need X10 control of the bathroom vanity light?

Why not just use a non-X10 dimmer switch that works with LED’s, one that doesn’t need a neutral wire at the switch? (Such as the Lutron Maestro C.L Dimmer MACL-153M $24.60 on Amazon).

Why not just plug an LED nightlight into an outlet in the bathroom?



This is an automation forum which is why he wants automated control over his lights instead of a standard switch.

Some of the information you are giving is incorrect as it pertains to automation and what the poster is trying to accomplish. In older homes, the neutral wire is generally in the fixture and not in the switch box the way it is in newer homes. While grounding is a safety measure (and code) it in itself has nothing to do with the way an automation system works.
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BLH
Advanced Member

5750 Posts

Posted - 06/24/2018 :  09:42:33 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The XPDI3 sales page also says. Dimmable LED bulbs over 60 or more watts equivalent or 40 watts incandescent!
The bulbs you have are 800 Lumens each and most manufacturers of the A19 style call them 60 watt equivalent. So three in parallel are at least 180 watts equivalent.

The Insteon modules use the X10 %dim commands and X10 uses Extended X10 commands for their soft start switches. So if you are using an X10 CM15A and AHP it probably will not control them properly for dimming.

Remotes like your HR12 and a transceiver. Should work with the Insteon X10 addressed module. As they are the standard X10 messages.

Edited by - BLH on 06/24/2018 12:15:42 PM
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Travasaurus
Starting Member

USA
10 Posts

Posted - 06/24/2018 :  1:04:34 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by BLH

The XPDI3 sales page also says. Dimmable LED bulbs over 60 or more watts equivalent or 40 watts incandescent!
The bulbs you have are 800 Lumens each and most manufacturers of the A19 style call them 60 watt equivalent. So three in parallel are at least 180 watts equivalent.
The Insteon modules use the X10 %dim commands and X10 uses Extended X10 commands for their soft start switches. So if you are using an X10 CM15A and AHP it probably will not control them properly for dimming.
Remotes like your HR12 and a transceiver. Should work with the Insteon X10 addressed module. As they are the standard X10 messages.


Thank you. My answer was going to be, "Because that's what I've had for the last 20 years and that's what I like". Plus, the girlfriend wants more light than a nightlight would provide but doesn't want to get blasted-out by the full intensity of 3 100-watt bulbs in the middle of the night when she has to go to the bathroom (and that may be borderline TMI). As regards my wiring situation this house was built in the late '40s and both wires (there are only 2) are black with no identifying marks that I can find. The only way I can determine Hot from Ground is with a voltage tester; perhaps they were marked 7 decades ago but that marking has long-since worn off. That's why I'm having a neutral line installed so I can get my X-10 capability back to what it was in the bathroom when I had incandescent bulbs (yes, it is that big a deal to me).
So is the bottom line here that if I get a properly-installed XPDI13 switch it should work okay (i.e. dim) my 3 10-watt (100-watt equivalent) LED bulbs? Or is this one of those things that I'm simply going to have to try it and see if it works? (Which I'm willing to do unless someone tells me unequivocally that it will not) And being able to utilize my HR12A remote controllers is a big deal too; that's part & parcel of the endeavor here.
As usual, all input, advice and suggestions are much-appreciated; I never dreamed it would be this much of a nightmare simply moving from one type of bulb (incandescent) to another (LED) all the while maintaining my ability to dim them. Talk about an education!
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x10guru
New Member

17 Posts

Posted - 06/24/2018 :  2:33:57 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originallly posted by lilyoyo1:

This is an automation forum which is why he wants automated control over his lights instead of a standard switch.

Some of the information you are giving is incorrect as it pertains to automation and what the poster is trying to accomplish. In older homes, the neutral wire is generally in the fixture and not in the switch box the way it is in newer homes. While grounding is a safety measure (and code) it in itself has nothing to do with the way an automation system works.


Nothing that I posted was “incorrect”.

I was simply giving Travasaurus other options to consider. He came to this forum looking for help, and I and others are simply trying to give him sound advice.
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x10guru
New Member

17 Posts

Posted - 06/24/2018 :  2:42:25 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by BLH:

The XPDI3 sales page also says. Dimmable LED bulbs over 60 or more watts equivalent or 40 watts incandescent!
The bulbs you have are 800 Lumens each and most manufacturers of the A19 style call them 60 watt equivalent. So three in parallel are at least 180 watts equivalent.


The XPDI3 product literature states that the minimum load should be 40W for incandescents, but then it also says LED bulbs should at least be a 60W equivalent.

However, the power drawn by a 60W “equivalent” LED bulb is typically only about 9W. So there seems to be some inconsistency as to what really is the minimum load in order for the XPDI3 to operate properly. I would recommend that if anyone is concerned about the minimum load, they should first contact X10 tech support to get clarification on this before purchasing a XPDI3 Dimmer Switch.

Note that the product manual doesn’t even mention LED loads unless you consider them to fall under the “etc” category.

For reference:

From the XPDI3 website sales page:

Please consider that lamps rated below 40W may flicker or operate erratically with this switch and should not be used.

Special Note: If your incandescent or halogen lights aren't working and dimming properly with two-wire dimmer switches, this three-wire switch will usually solve the problem. If you're planning on using this switch with electronic low-voltage transformers, we suggest you also use a in-line noise block to eliminate the noise usually generated with this combination. Magnetic transformer loads usually do not generate noise, but may generate hum with some fans or motor loads. Unfortunately, there is no way to determine whether hum will occur without actually trying it. But, if unacceptable hum occurs, use the XPS3 wall switch module to provide X10 ON/OFF control only. Dimmable LED Bulbs should be 60W equivalent or higher.

From the XDPI3 Product Manual:

Description: The XPDI3 is an electronic, decorative-style, dimming, Single-Pole/3-Way Wall Master Switch rated for 40-500watts, 4A Inductive. It can handle loads as follows: Incandescent (120V Standard or Halogen) Bulbs, Low Voltage Lighting using Inductive Transformers, ceiling fan motors, etc. Its decorative paddle permits local operation of the Switch. The Power Cutoff Switch is provided for bulb changing. The X10 Address Code Dials set the Letter Code and Number Code and are located behind the paddle.

Specific Requirements: 120VAC, 40-500W Incandescent, 4A Inductive. Lamps rated below 40W may flicker and/or operate erratically. The Neutral Wire IS required.
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x10guru
New Member

17 Posts

Posted - 06/24/2018 :  2:48:53 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by BLH

The Insteon modules use the X10 %dim commands and X10 uses Extended X10 commands for their soft start switches. So if you are using an X10 CM15A and AHP it probably will not control them properly for dimming.


The Insteon 2477D has X10 Scenes capability, so even the CM15A and AHP can properly control the 2477D for dimming.

Example:

Set the X10 address of the 2477D to B1.
Set the default brightness level of the 2477D load to be 50%.
Set up a C1 X10 scene address in the 2477D with a 100% brightness level.
Set up a C2 X10 scene address in the 2477D with a 20% brightness level.

Command B1 ON within AHP.
Result: the load connected to the 2477D immediately goes to 50% brightness.

Command C1 ON within AHP.
Result: the load connected to the 2477D immediately goes to 100% brightness.

Command C2 ON within AHP.
Result: the load connected to the 2477D immediately goes to 20% brightness.

Command either B1 OFF or C1 OFF or C2 OFF within AHP.
Result: the load connected to the 2477D immediately turns off.
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BLH
Advanced Member

5750 Posts

Posted - 06/24/2018 :  3:49:42 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks for the information.

I had not thought of the X10 Scene Capability. I though later firmware removed X10 scenes. From Insteon modules.

I know the commands to the Primary X10 address gave me some odd results. If defined in the later AHP versions. Lamps List was the new Soft Start modules. That seemed to use Extended X10 messaging.

Edited by - BLH on 06/24/2018 3:53:01 PM
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