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Rob Iles
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Posted: 23 May 2009 at 1:44pm | IP Logged Quote Rob Iles

Hi,

What are you up to? working on anything interesting/novel?

How is Harmony helping?

What role does Harmony play in your home/office?

Please share :-)

Would be nice to get some pictures too, if appropriate.


Thanks

Rob
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Posted: 28 May 2009 at 6:57pm | IP Logged Quote 

Just thinking about my plan for world domination, oops, I mean per room heating control.

A simple system could be made by wiring a BBSB rf remote control to a standard wall thermostat in each room. It should fit behind the stat in the wall box !

Hmm......

Just need to sort out the radiator valves then, and that last idea about putting resistors on top of my thermostatic valves would do that very nicely 

It's almost a plan I would however prefer to wait for full temperature control with Rob's 1-wire component !

Time to start getting the network cable around the house then
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djcolling
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Posted: 29 May 2009 at 9:04am | IP Logged Quote djcolling

I have at last built my hardware version of heating control. The functionality has been described hereabouts before, but basically I have 2 AD10s, 4 wired appliance modules, five relays and a four code responder, all built into a consumer unit box. The system relies on an SC2800 with four thermostats, a Hawkeye sensor and a wife override. The heating is on if the wife commands, or the low temperature wired thermostat kicks in, or both thermostats in the conservatory come on (to cater for the very cold night in the winter in Aberdeen!). [The higher set thermostat opens the motorised valve for the conservatory and the lower set turns on the heating]. After that the heating is on if the timer is on, and the hall thermostat is on or the lounge thermostat is on and the Hawkeye detects movement.

The feedback sensors are: heating is off, timer is on, override is on and heating is on. The duplication is to try and avoid a previous problem. The results are displayed on a four switch led unit from the States.

All seems to be working perfectly except for the feedback which seems to get drowned in the triplicate transmissions of thermostat on and offs from the SC2800. This is something I did not anticipate. Am now thinking of using Harmony to deduce what the feedback should be, or I need to find a way of interrogating the four way feedback. Any plans for this in Harmony?

The need for more relays than would seem to be required is to avoid the chatter of an appliance unit switching off when there is still power at its output. This is not a problem with the AD10s!

 

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Rob Iles
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Posted: 07 June 2009 at 4:56am | IP Logged Quote Rob Iles

1st off, where does one puchase a "wife override" - sounds most useful! (sorry)

Seriously, sounds like a well thought out project. Perhaps some photo's would be in order?

I'm keen to understand the "feedback" - are these "logic levels", contact closures / something else?

I may have a hardware component for Harmony available very soon that could help with this - - though I'd need to fully understand the requirements to make sure we're talking about the same thing.

I should also have single-channel USB-Powered mains rated relay units for Harmony (Harm-SCUPMRU, catchy huh?) ready around the same time.

The third part to add to the list, is a single channel, USB powered, analogue input.

Designed as a light level sensor (LDR with a potentiometer to set the threshold) - when level is above threshold, device reports on ,else it reports off.

The LDR could be replaced with a thermistor / other component whose resistance varies based on [something].

These board should be pretty cheap, at around the £40 mark; and could form the basis for a number of projects.

Thanks for the info - - and do please let me know about the feedback device; would love to help if I can.

Rob


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djcolling
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Posted: 08 June 2009 at 9:51am | IP Logged Quote djcolling

Not quite well enough thought out. It does not cater for the triple signals from the SC2800.

The feedback is from "TMA4 MicroModule two-way X10 Compatible four address X10 transmitter (on/off) "

It would be mighty useful to be able to use the two-way capability and interrogate this device for its current settings. Any way of doing this in Harmony? Or in any other known system?

I will send you some pictures when I can upload them!

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Rob Iles
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Posted: 08 June 2009 at 11:57am | IP Logged Quote Rob Iles

re:Feedback - So *something* triggers the TMA4, which sends an X10 signal, which is duly picked up by Harmony, yes? What is that *something*? just wondering if it could be connected to one of the input boards I mentioned, so that you could query it's status at any time, rather than relying on catching it on the wire...

re:piccies - they need to be hosted with picassa/flickr/other online storage service, then linked to the site. alternatively, feel free to send them to me and I'll put them on this webserver for you.

Thanks,

Rob
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djcolling
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Posted: 09 June 2009 at 10:28am | IP Logged Quote djcolling

The somethings are one of the relays mentioned! I either use DPDT relays or SPDT where necessary.

Unfortunately the signal is not picked up by Harmony because it is swamped by the two follow on signals from the SC2800.

I am looking at delay relays to avoid that.

Is there any way I can interrogate the TMA4 (two-way functionality) for its status with Harmony?

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Rob Iles
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Posted: 10 June 2009 at 1:32pm | IP Logged Quote Rob Iles

I'll look into it!
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djcolling
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Posted: 11 June 2009 at 8:49am | IP Logged Quote djcolling

Excellent!!!

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djcolling
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Posted: 22 June 2009 at 8:53am | IP Logged Quote djcolling

Disaster!

My control box is no longer recognising the heating timer coming on. Must be a faulty relay!

Will need to get into the top cupboard and examine!

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Rob Iles
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Posted: 22 June 2009 at 2:15pm | IP Logged Quote Rob Iles

Eeek - keep us posted.
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djcolling
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Posted: 24 June 2009 at 11:14am | IP Logged Quote djcolling

Turns out the two DPDT relays that I bought on ebay many moons ago are both failing. One seems to be stuck on and the other stuck off!

And the failing thermostat has failed again. And the boiler itself keeps failing with an error message. Not a good week!

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Rob Iles
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Posted: 25 June 2009 at 9:20am | IP Logged Quote Rob Iles

Ouch

all un-related, or cascading error?

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djcolling
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Posted: 25 June 2009 at 10:01am | IP Logged Quote djcolling

Good question.

I cannot figure out the cascade.

Worse. The relay that seemed to be stuck on has now, correctly, gone off!

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Rob Iles
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Posted: 25 June 2009 at 11:00am | IP Logged Quote Rob Iles

hmmm. I'd now (if it were mine) class the relays as unreliable, and seek replacements - - reduce some of the uncertainty.
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djcolling
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Posted: 26 June 2009 at 8:46am | IP Logged Quote djcolling

Three relays on order. Two replacments and a spare, on the principle of never buying one light bulb!

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Posted: 26 June 2009 at 4:26pm | IP Logged Quote 

Hi dj,

I would be classing the relays as unsuitable for purpose, and trying to work out why !

Can you watch the relay contacts while they are switching on load to see if there is excessive arcing ? Have you checked the current is not exceeding the relay rating ? For it to stick ON, it is arcing and melting the contact patch which could mean the contact patch is too small, or the contacts are too slow on opening - do you have anything slugging the relays, like some capacitance in the coil circuit ?
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djcolling
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Posted: 12 June 2010 at 12:33pm | IP Logged Quote djcolling

This is a sorry tale but please bear with me.

The heating control system as described above has failed.

Having turned down the thermostats, Aberdeen had a cold snap last night so we activated the wife override. On previous occasions the signal has been missed so I had created two events in Harmony to retransmit the command if the heating did not come on.

Unfortunately the heating on signal was missed by Harmony so it went into an infinite loop trying to turn on the override every second or so. I tried to stop it but gave up and went to bed. This morning the heating was off. No power. I checked the spur fuse. OK. Checked the fuse in the fuse box. OK. Replaced the spur fuse and the heating came on. Rechecked the removed fuse and it had failed.

The heating did not go off when all of the thermostats went off. Harmony was still sending on commands every second, but not reporting this in the online log, only the error log.

Tried adding prerequisites to the events but to no avail, even tried deleting the device, but Harmony just kept on transmitting the signal. Closed down the Harmony core and reloaded. Same thing. Eventually closed down Harmony CM11 and restarted. Success.

Checked my box and realised that the AD10 which responds to the override command was not functioning. It was stuck on but would not respond to the switch on its front.

It would seem that the repeated on signals caused the AD10 to malfunction and stuck in the on position and caused the fuse to blow. I have now removed the relay that is driven by the AD10 and seem to have control back. But no wife override!

Have now ordered a replacement AD10

 

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Rob Iles
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Posted: 13 June 2010 at 2:25am | IP Logged Quote Rob Iles

Ouch! not nice at all!

I'm pleased to see your reply doesn't point the finger at Harmony, as others do! (Posts, not people!)

Do you fancy sending me the failed AD10 for disection, or are you well skilled in that area? (I'm a lightwait when it comes to analogue!!) ....Glaf you've got it up and running again.

**Question**
In an ideal world, what could Harmony have done to prevent the issue / alert you there was a failure?


Thanks, and best wishes,

Rob
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djcolling
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Posted: 13 June 2010 at 11:14am | IP Logged Quote djcolling

Answer **

If Harmony had an interrogate mode, my foolish and inept attempts to program events to ensure compliance with my wishes would not have been necessary.



Edited by djcolling on 13 June 2010 at 11:14am
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