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Keypad button not responding randomly


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I have a random problem with one button on a keypad linc. I have kitchen counter lights controlled by a switchlinc. I also have a keypadlinc button controlling the same lights. It has been installed for close to a year, and has been working ok up until the last 2 weeks. Twice now the kpl button would not shut the lights off. The first time a couple of on/off comands did the trick. Last night going to bed, my wife made a couple of toggles on the button, and nothing. I did the same thing, and eventually shut the lights of at the switchlinc ok. I then immediately tried the kpl again,and all was ok. The kpl works just fine this morning. This seems to be a random occurrence, and can't be reproduced. The event viewer this morning is a blank window.

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I find it difficult to isolate these types of problems to a single cause, because I have come to believe that many problems are the result of a combination of multiple causes. Over the course of time, we also tend to add electronic gadgets that can contribute to communication problems intermittently. The only way that I know to truly identify whether a device is a problem-cause with communication is to measure performance (scene test, event viewer, response time, etc..) while suspected devices are plugged in, then after they are unplugged, to see if there is a measurable difference.

 

In your case, however, I cannot help but wonder about your counter lights. What kind are they (incandescent, floursecent, low voltage)? Is it possible that, over time, their performance and efficiency has slowly degraded to the point where they, themselves, are contributing to a communication problem? Try running a scene test on your scene created to link the KPL button to the switch controlling the light. What does it show?

 

Also, do you have access points or other dual-band devices confirmed on each leg of your electrical system?

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You are right, it's hard to find intermittent problems like this. It happens the same time of night, and only when my wife is doing it. That may be a clue. I have a couple of dual band devices and 2 access points plus I ended up installing the rf coupler on the breaker panel. The lights are small fluorescents, so that may be another clue. They are 2 1/2 years old. It's only happened twice, so I'll have to play this out.

Thanks

Brad

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Could be a combination.

The lights are making enough noise to make communications marginal and at the time your wife is trying it. Another noise makes is also on. Making the communications bad.

Could also be they get nosier as they warm up and are on longer.

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The lights are small fluorescents, so that may be another clue.

 

These are of the type that I believe can get worse as they get older. I would definitely put them on my list of suspects.

 

As I suggested earlier, I would try a scene test on this KPL/Switchlinc scene. If the results are suspicious, I would then find a way to temporarily disconnect them from power (if a mechanical switch on the fixture is not available) and try the scene test again to see if results improve.

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There are 4 small fixtures, each with their own switch. There were only 2 lights on at time this happens. These are the 2 that are used most of the time. The next time this happens, I'm going to switch them off one at a time and see if the kpl will work. I may end up replacing with led strips. I gather these work better with insteon.

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I may end up replacing with led strips. I gather these work better with insteon.

 

Maybe. Maybe not. I have some LED-based lighting that I believe causes insteon trouble. I think a factor regarding trouble potential is whether there is a secondary power supply involved, such as a transformer.

 

My LED undercabinet lighting is on a filter as a result.

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It appears that one light is causing the problem. It is one of two that are used most of the time. It is only 2 1/2 years old, and are the electronic balast, which i didn't think would be a problem. Smarthome, and Aartech here in Canada don't sell the Leviton inline filters anymore. Are these still being produced? I can't seem to find anything. What are others using for inline filters?

Thanks.

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I found a couple on ebay. I couldn't find a replacement for these. People are going to need something for these annoying problems. Leviton appears to have discontinued the 6287, and any other associated device.

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Well I know that JV Digital Engineering has been making X10 troubleshooting devices.

Like a nice 10 and 15 amp plug in filter. Maybe in the future they may make one if there is enough demand.

I have their XTB-IIR X10 Repeater {respects an Insteon signal} and XTBM Signal Meter. Both are top of the line in my opinion.

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The filter/isolator issue is one that has bothered me for some time now.

It is so unacceptable for Smartlabs not to have developed and offered more filter/isolator options.

 

It is well known that many household appliances/devices will interfere with the Insteon signal and therefore various filter/isolator options are a must have.

 

In my experience the issue is more often a "signal sucker" issue than a noise generator. Many manufactures install an across the line capacitor to shunt the noise that the device produces. This then results in Insteon signal absorption.

In cases such as these a filterlinc is not the best option. A simple, appropriately sized, choke coil would do a better job than the filterlinc. Especially if the load is not very heavy.

 

If the issue is noise then you would still require something like the filterlinc as it includes a capacitor to shunt the noise.

 

However if the issue is signal absorption most likely the interfering device already has an across the line capacitor. No need to add another capacitor or a tuned LC network. All that is needed is a simple choke coil.

I would refer to this as an isolator rather than a filter.

 

While there are many choke coils readily available that would work I have yet to find one already packaged and approved. A person could make their own but I would be concerned with the liability issues if not installed along with a fuse appropriate for the maximum expected load and inductor winding ratings.

 

I find it very hard to understand why Smartlabs does not offer a filter/isolator like the 6288 but in a wire-in option.

The XPPF filter is a way better isolator than the filterlinc.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I've installed a Leviton 6287 i purchased from ebay, and so far it's worked as expected. I've ordered 2 more from the same supplier for the main reason, there isn't

anything else to replace them. There must be a demand for this type of filter, and i'm surprised no one has stepped up and made a filter available since Leviton

stopped making them.

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