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New ISY, trying to use multiple motion sensors


balla4eva33

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Hi, I just got an ISY. I'm excited about it, but as you can imagine, it's all new and foreign to me. I'm pretty confident that I can accomplish the following, but I'm not sure if I need a custom program script or if there's a way to configure it simply through a scene(s) setup.

 

I currently have 3 motion sensors in our basement which up until now have been linked to a 3-way switch (2 ToggleLinc switches) which control one main ceiling light. I bought the ISY because I want the ability to have the 3 motion sensors work together a little better. Without the ISY, when one sensor would trigger an ON, the countdown to timeout and turn OFF would begin, and even if one of the other 2 sensors would sense motion, the original sensor would still trigger the OFF once it timed out. As you can imagine, this resulted in the lights doing some weird things from time to time!

 

My goal is to have all 3 sensors trigger an ON and not throw an OFF until ALL THREE sensors timeout (aka there is no more motion anywhere in the basement for X amount of time).

 

Can someone advise me on how I can accomplish this with my new ISY!?

 

Thanks in advance! I've looked around on the forum and I've been Googling it for a while, but can't find a solution.

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well, the best way that I would do it as I sorta have in my set up is this:

 

set up 4 programs

1=Motion turn on

2=Switch turn on

3=Auto turn off

4=Switch turn off

 

1st program: Motion turn on

If

Control 'Motion Sensor 1' is switched On

Or Control 'Motion Sensor 2' is switched On

Or Control 'Motion Sensor 3' is switched On

 

Then

Set 'Basement Light' On (*note - or you would already have this as a scene and you wouldn't need ISY to turn on light, thus delaying the 'On' command)

Stop program 'Auto turn off'

Run program 'Auto turn off'

 

Else

- No Actions - (To add one, press 'Action')

 

2nd program: Switch turn on

If

Control 'Basement Light Switch' is switched On

 

Then

Stop program 'Auto turn off'

Run program 'Auto turn off'

 

Else

- No Actions - (To add one, press 'Action')

 

3rd Program: Auto turn off (this program should be disable)

If

- No Conditions - (To add one, press 'Schedule' or 'Condition')

 

Then

Wait x minutes

Set 'Basement Light' Off

 

Else

- No Actions - (To add one, press 'Action')

 

4th Program: Switch turn off

If

Control 'Basement Light Switch' is switched Off

 

Then

Stop program 'Auto turn off'

 

Else

- No Actions - (To add one, press 'Action')

 

Now, with this to work, you will need to set up motion sensors as 'On' Commands only in the options, this way, only ISY will control when the lights go off, not the motion detectors.

 

This is how I did my motion sensor and it's been working well. Unless someone has a better solution that maybe I don't know about. :roll:

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Here is how I would do it:

 

Program: BasementMotion

If
  Control Motion1 is Switched On
  or Control Motion2 is Switched On
  or Control Motion3 is Switched On

Then
  Set BasementLight On
  Wait 5 minutes
  Set basement Light Off

Else

 

This way, the lights will com on with any motion and stay on for 5 minutes after the last motion was detected. Adjust the 5 minute delay to suit your needs.

 

You could add a second program to disable the motion detect program when the lights are manually operated as follows:

 

Program: BasementMotionDisable

If
  (
  Control BasementSwitchlinc1 is Switched On
  or Control Basement Switchlinc2 is Switched On
  )
  And 
  (
  Control BasementSwitchlinc1 is Not Switched Off
  and Control BasementSwitchlinc2 is Not Switched Off
  )

Then
  Disable Program BasementMotion
Else
  Enable Program BasementMotion

 

Hope this helps

 

-Xathros

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Thanks for your input! Do I need to set my jumpers to On Only for all my motion sensors in order for both/either of these programs to work? Which program approach is better? What are the benefits to the second example as opposed to the first proposed one?

 

Thanks!

 

For the second example, it is fewer programs for a good set of features. Easy to maintain or modify. This would work best with the sensor in On only, Sensing mode (checked).

 

It looks to me like franklyn7895's programs would accomplish the same as mine but using 4 programs instead of 2. These would also work best with the sensor configured for On Only, Sensing mode (checked)

 

-Xathros

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Thanks for your input! Do I need to set my jumpers to On Only for all my motion sensors in order for both/either of these programs to work? Which program approach is better? What are the benefits to the second example as opposed to the first proposed one?

 

Thanks!

 

For the second example, it is fewer programs for a good set of features. Easy to maintain or modify. This would work best with the sensor in On only, Sensing mode (checked).

 

It looks to me like franklyn7895's programs would accomplish the same as mine but using 4 programs instead of 2. These would also work best with the sensor configured for On Only, Sensing mode (checked)

 

-Xathros

 

Xathros,

 

Correct me if I am wrong, but does not your suggested approach initiate the countdown based upon receipt of ON commands? I thought the request was for the countdown to start only after the last receipt of OFF commands.

 

Do I need to set my jumpers to On Only for all my motion sensors in order for both/either of these programs to work?

 

balla4eva33, except for jumper 5 (allowing external software control), you should forget jumpers. Use the ISY to configure your motion sensor.

 

I will also throw in a suggested approach. Create a scene that includes the lights that you want to come on and go off. Then create a program:

 

if

status motion sensor 1 is on

or status motion sensor 2 is on

or status of motion sensor 3 is on

then

turn on lights scene

else

wait x amount of time

turn off lights scene

 

The tradeoff for the approach, above, is that there will be some unnecessary ON commands sent to the light scene. IN most cases, I would expect this to be not a factor. On the other hand, it should be pretty efficient from a programming perspective. In this case, the motion sensors must be configured to send both ON and OFF commands.

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Again, I'm new to ISY and programming and everything so please cut me some slack, but can we take a quick step back? When I attempt to link my motion sensors into the admin console on my computer for the ISY, I think I've got it all communicating correctly, but when I create a scene for our basement, how do I set it up? Do I make my 2 togglelincs controllers and then all 3 motion sensors are the responders? I'm a little confused by the whole controller/responder thing, especially in scenarios like these where RF is involved. Thanks!

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I think I've got it all communicating correctly, but when I create a scene for our basement, how do I set it up?

 

First, you need to decide IF you want to create a scene and, if so, what devices to include in it. What scenes you create in this case will depend on what program approach you take. In my suggestion, you would create a single scene that includes only the lighting devices (as responders) that you want to respond to the motion sensors. The program would react to the motion sensors (which do not need to be in a scene) and the program would turn on the scene that includes the lighting devices.

 

As background, a "scene" is nothing more than a relationship between two, or more, insteon devices. With the ISY, a device in a scene can be a responder or a controller. A controller will tell all other devices in the scene to turn on or off. A responder will obey the commands of any controller within the same scene. By definition, a controller is also a responder and will also respond to commands from other controllers within the scene. All scenes created include the ISY, which is, by definition, a controller.

 

Experiement around a bit. Create a test scene with one switch as controller and another switch as responder. Turn on the controller Switch. Watch the responder switch also turn on. Turn on the responder switch and note that the controller switch does NOT respond in kind. Delete that scene and create another test scene, with two switches, both as controllers. Note that when you turn either switch on, the other responds equally.

 

In the case of your motion sensors, I see that most have responded by proposing a solution where a program turns on your lights. I think you will find this the consensus approach for this type of problem. The motion sensor triggers the program, the program turns the lights on and off. There is no need to create a scene where the motion sensors directly command the lights. IN your case, you wanted the lights to go off ONLY after ALL three motion sensors were off. This cannot be accomplished via a scene directly, and requires the conditional logic of a program (if ms1 AND ms2 AND ms3 are off)

 

There are, of course, options where you can use a combination of scenes and programs, but understand that they programs and scenes can work together and things often don't work well if you have the wrong scenes defined with the wrong programs.

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Xathros,

 

Correct me if I am wrong, but does not your suggested approach initiate the countdown based upon receipt of ON commands? I thought the request was for the countdown to start only after the last receipt of OFF commands.

 

Hi Oberkc-

 

I just went back and re-read the OP. I do believe my solution is what balla4eva33 was asking for. His problem was that with multiple sensors timing out at different times, the lights were not behaving in a usable manor. My solution simply moved the timer from inside the 3 MS to my program and keeps the lights on while there is continued motion detected by any of the 3 sensors.

 

Thank you for adding the info RE: jumper 5 and using the ISY for configuring the sensors. I probably should have pointed that out as well.

 

-Xathros

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Hi Oberkc-

 

I just went back and re-read the OP. I do believe my solution is what balla4eva33 was asking for. His problem was that with multiple sensors timing out at different times, the lights were not behaving in a usable manor. My solution simply moved the timer from inside the 3 MS to my program and keeps the lights on while there is continued motion detected by any of the 3 sensors.

 

Thank you for adding the info RE: jumper 5 and using the ISY for configuring the sensors. I probably should have pointed that out as well.

 

-Xathros

 

When I read:

 

"My goal is to have all 3 sensors trigger an ON and not throw an OFF until ALL THREE sensors timeout (aka there is no more motion anywhere in the basement for X amount of time)."

 

I understood this to mean to wait for all the motion sensors to turn OFF before initiating a countdown. It is for this reason that I was wondering aloud whether your solution met the stated need. In a practical sense, given that the countdown period is a known and fixed interval, it makes little difference unless one planned to routinely re-configure the motion sensor timeout period and did not want to fool with the program. (I don't know why someone would want to do that, but that would be for another day.)\

 

BTW, I prefer your solution, and is the one that I use at my house. This has the benefit of being able to use a scene to initiate the lights, but using the power of the program for deciding when to turn them off.

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I did make a few assumptions when I coded that: 1) All MS have the same timeout delay. 2)The timeout delay is 5 minutes. Based on those assumptions, I felt this met the functional requirements. This is also pretty close to how I handle mine as well although I don't have any multi-sensor situations like we have here. In my living room, I have one additional program that I recently added:

 

If

Status LivingRoomSLD is Off

and Control LivingRoomSLD is switched FadeDown

 

Then

Disable Program LivingRoomMotionLights

 

This allows for kids to sleep one the couch without triggering the living room lights every time someone moves. Switching the lights Off again will re-enable the motion progrems as above.

 

-Xathros

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You mention the timeout delays on the MSs...that's something I meant to bring up. What should I have them set at? I want the program to handle as much as possible, but the MSs have the knob for the timeout which I assume runs no matter what, right? How does that work with the wait time of the program?

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If you configure the MS for On Only, then the timeout is irrelevant. The programs above only respond to the On command. If the MS times out and sends an off, there is no effect.

 

The best configuration for these is On Only and Sensing mode. Sensing mode sends an On every time it sees motion (usually 10 or so seconds in between messages.) rather than waiting for the timeout to occur before it can send another on. The programs respond to the additional On commands by restarting the timeout delay each time an on is received.

 

-Xathros

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You mention the timeout delays on the MSs...that's something I meant to bring up. What should I have them set at? I want the program to handle as much as possible, but the MSs have the knob for the timeout which I assume runs no matter what, right? How does that work with the wait time of the program?

 

How it works with relationship to the programs depends on your program, the motion sensor settings, and any scenes you create.

 

First, about the motion sensor. All I know is that which I read from the manual. I understand that a motion sensor will transmit an ON command when motion is sensed (also potentially based on other factors such as darkness). I know that there is an adjustable timeout period, after which the motion sensor will send an OFF command (unless disabled by one of the jumpers, and unless motion is detected again). I also surmise from the manual that there is an 8 second period after motion detection that the sensor will wait before being able to detect motion again.

 

If you were to create a scene with between a motion sensor (as a controller) and another insteon device as a responder, the other insteon device would come on when motion is sensed, and turn off when (and if) the motion sensor transmits an OFF command. If you were to create a scene with multiple insteon motion sensors and multiple insteon devices, the insteon devices would come on if any single motion sensor transmits an ON command, and turn off if any single motion sensor transmits an OFF command. No program would be needed in this case.

 

Another option would be to create a scene with motion sensors as controllers and your other lighting devices as responders. Configure your motion sensors to transmit only an ON command and rely on the scene relationship to turn the lights on. Supplement this with a program to turn the lights off after a period of time after last motion sensed (based upon reciept of an ON command). In this case, the timeout period of the motion sensor is irrelevant. This is the option I prefer for my own use.

 

A third option would be to not create a any scene, but use a program to both turn lights on and off. This is the approach suggested by the three of us in response to your questions and stated desires. All three of our suggestions appear to use a program to turn on the lights in response to receipt of an ON command from one of the motion sensors. Xathros and Franklyns approach is to start a countdown immediately, but the countdown would be interrupted any time a subsequent ON command was recieved by any of the motion sensors. (I must admit that I prefer the relative simplicity of Xathros version.) My version waited for all three motion sensors to be OFF before initiating a timer (after which it would turn the lights off), based on a very literal interpretation of your stated wishes.

 

As with most cases, there are multiple ways of doing things and no single right or wrong answers to many of the questions you ask.

 

Given your stated state of confusion with the whole "controller/responder" thing, my suggestion is to temporarily put on hold your motion sensor scenario and simply to experiment around with scenes only. Link one motion sensor to some lights and observe the results. Become familiar with the purpose of the motion sensor configuration settings and how that affects scene performance. Link one insteon device with another, varying options of controllers and responders and turn these devices on and off manually, observing the results with the other. Do this until you are less confused with what a scene does and the difference between a controller and responder.

 

From there, start experimenting with programs.

 

Once you have a level of confidence with this, you can make good decisions about your needs and how you wish to configure motion sensor settings, what scenes you need to create, and how to supplement those scenes with programs.

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Indeed, thank you all for your input and immense info! I think I want to go the route of creating a scene for my basement lights. As I understand it, this scene will have both of my togglelincs and all 3 of my motion sensors. With the settings of all 3 of my motion sensors set to "Sensing" and "On Only", I will rely on the motion they detect to turn on my scene and then the program will run to handle wait time and when to turn the scene back off. Taking Xathros's program(s) suggestion, the only other question I have is why you set the scene on, and wait, and then set it right off all within the THEN as opposed to putting something in the ELSE? I have it setup with this program right now and I THINK it's working, but I am still trying to wrap my around exactly why the IF ELSE is the way it is.

 

Thanks!! You guys have been a huge help!

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Taking Xathros's program(s) suggestion, the only other question I have is why you set the scene on, and wait, and then set it right off all within the THEN as opposed to putting something in the ELSE? I have it setup with this program right now and I THINK it's working, but I am still trying to wrap my around exactly why the IF ELSE is the way it is.

 

Thanks!! You guys have been a huge help!

What would trigger the else? The If triggers section has to evaluate to False for the else section to run. This would usually be an MS sending an Off motion timeout. The MS timeouts were the ones giving you strange light behaviour (seeing different motion) and were replaced by the ISY programme timer which you can now control with various other decisions that can be added for times of the day etc.

 

Eg: I have a MS and bedside lamp in my master BR. The lamp times off in 1.75 minutes beating the MS timer (as a back up insurance of 2 minutes). If I get up in the middle of the night to hit the bathroom it times out in 45 seconds so it doesn't stay on too long after I hit the bed again. Much longer times are wanted for evenings.

 

It's not only a hobby, it's a lifestyle and an obsession! You'll get used to it! :)

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Taking Xathros's program(s) suggestion, the only other question I have is why you set the scene on, and wait, and then set it right off all within the THEN as opposed to putting something in the ELSE?

 

You can do a lot worse than following the suggestions of xathros. Please be aware that his approach did NOT rely on creation of a scene, nor did I see where he suggested creating one. Turning the lights on and off was handled entirely by the program. If you create the scene you suggested, there will be one duplication of activity and may create some unnecessary insteon commands on the power lines.

 

The suggested approach was based on receipt only of ON commands from the sensors, which would trigger only THEN paths. This takes advantage of of a capability within the ISY to interrupt any ongoing WAIT statements, restarting the countdown each time motion is sensed.

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Also, be aware that if you use the motion sensors as controllers of a scene, you will be unable to disable the motion detection if wanted. Using the program method, you could disable the main program to prevent the lights from triggering on motion.

 

On the flip side, using the scene method, the lights will trigger about a second faster then relying on the program method.

 

Your choice as to what is preferred.

 

-Xathros

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