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Pulsating LEDs


stusviews

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One of my KPLs randomly pulsates its LEDs. The KPL is in 8-button mode with a 6-button faceplate. Only the middle four LEDs pulsate even though the bottom two LEDs (covered with a large button) are also secondary buttons as is one of the top buttons. The Close buttons are set to Always Off, the Open buttons are set to Always On.

 

Two (of the three) other devices shown to the right do not always pulsate. The SwitchLinc labelled "Ceiling" is on the same circuit, the SwitchLinc labelled "Patio" is not. The SwitchLinc labelled "Fireplace" is on the same circuit and doesn't pulsate.

 

Another device, a LampLinc also on a different (third) circuit sometimes pulsates, too. The device on the same circuit pulsates in green only, the devices on different circuits alternately pulsate green and red. Nothing shows in the log and none of the loads are affected at all.

 

Any ideas?

 

https://www.dropbox.com/s/mjor5eryim1yrzb/DSCN0800.MOV?dl=0

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One of my KPLs randomly pulsates its LEDs. The KPL is in 8-button mode with a 6-button faceplate. Only the middle four LEDs pulsate even though the bottom two LEDs (covered with a large button) are also secondary buttons as is one of the top buttons. The Close buttons are set to Always Off, the Open buttons are set to Always On.

 

Two (of the three) other devices shown to the right do not always pulsate. The SwitchLinc labelled "Ceiling" is on the same circuit, the SwitchLinc labelled "Patio" is not. The SwitchLinc labelled "Fireplace" is on the same circuit and doesn't pulsate.

 

Another device, a LampLinc also on a different (third) circuit sometimes pulsates, too. The device on the same circuit pulsates in green only, the devices on different circuits alternately pulsate green and red. Nothing shows in the log and none of the loads are affected at all.

 

Any ideas?

 

https://www.dropbox.com/s/mjor5eryim1yrzb/DSCN0800.MOV?dl=0

 

I had a KPL with a similar problem, a factory reset and a restore device fixed it.

 

What version of firmware is the KPL running.  I've noticed some issues with v.40

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Stu-

 

When does this happen?  Constantly, when a button is pressed, could it be indicating insteon traffic (Blink on traffic) ?

 

-Xathros

I have three of four SwitchLincs start blinking with  Insteon traffic since about v4.3.18 to v4.3.30. Strange that only once access to this option arrived it started happening and they all started this behaviour  weeks apart. The first unit to do this was immediately after a very close lightning strike and I thought  it was cooked. After a power cycle it worked OK but flashed on Insteon traffic. Two others started randomly in the next few months independently.

 

In the few years I have never seen this happen before and didn't know there was such a feature until I happened upon the options in a newer version.

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Stu-

 

When does this happen?  Constantly, when a button is pressed, could it be indicating insteon traffic (Blink on traffic) ?

 

-Xathros

 

Nope, the pulsating occurs randomly. It may last for a few seconds up to a minute. Most of the time, it will pulsate, then stop only to recur a few seconds later. This pulsate, stop, pulsate may go on for 8-10 cycles, then stop until the next occurrence. The KPL is in the bedroom. The pulsating has woken us up, for example at 5 AM. The movie shown in the first post was about 3 in the afternoon. Also, these are the button LEDs that pulsate, not the set LED. Of the three other devices I've observed pulsating in unison, none do it every time the KPL button LEDs blink which makes it more confusing.

 

The KPL is a 6-button relay in 8-button mode with both the top (A & B) and bottom (G & H) buttons cross-linked so I can control 5 devices. Note that the top and bottom cross-linked pairs are no affected by the pulsating.

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Try hitting it with a heat gun / hair dryer and/or some cold spray inside.

 

Perhaps you have PS capacitors going bad n the power supply and certain powerline disturbances set it off? Low/ high  voltage during the time period?

 

 

 

Edit: after watching your video they don't do what I would call "pulsating". I had images of the LEDs throbbing. They just cleanly blink on and off exactly the  same rate as mine do after being pressed. With the Switclincs  blinking in unison also this appears like you have initiated the phase tap test and they are responding.

 

I have never seen anything but white LEDs on my switchlincs. Is the color significant, old version, or some mod?

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The 4-tap test requires pressing the initiating set four times very rapidly, something like that cannon occur unintentionally. As I indicated, we've been woken up by the pulsating in the wee hours of the morning. No one else is in the house. Additionally, the 4-tap test blinks the set button LEDs, not the button LEDs.

 

The KPL button blinking after pushing it is different. In that case, the KPL will blink two or three times (depending if it's set to be Always On/Off of if the responder doesn't ACK, respectively) and then it stops. It does not pulsate continuously as shown above. Too, it's virtually impossible to press all four button simultaneously. I use to term pulsating to distinguish the phenomenon for the "normal" blinking.

 

The color buttons are the result of using KPL Color Diffusers. There are also Color kits for SwitchLincs.

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The 4-tap test requires pressing the initiating set four times very rapidly, something like that cannon occur unintentionally. As I indicated, we've been woken up by the pulsating in the wee hours of the morning. No one else is in the house. Additionally, the 4-tap test blinks the set button LEDs, not the button LEDs.

 

The KPL button blinking after pushing it is different. In that case, the KPL will blink two or three times (depending if it's set to be Always On/Off of if the responder doesn't ACK, respectively) and then it stops. It does not pulsate continuously as shown above. Too, it's virtually impossible to press all four button simultaneously. I use to term pulsating to distinguish the phenomenon for the "normal" blinking.

 

The color buttons are the result of using KPL Color Diffusers. There are also Color kits for SwitchLincs.

If I press all four buttons sequentially, which I do every time for combination entry,  they all blink together almost exactly as I see in your video but for a distinct number of flashes....maybe four or five times. Sometimes I observe pairs of buttons coming on slightly ahead of the other two and I assume that is the filming synchro effect maybe. Mine don't do that during my reported blinking.

 

The SwitchLincs are just weird and I can think  of no way they could do that from Insteon. Even ISY could not flash three units simultaneously that fast, so hacking would be out, for sure. As Jerlands suggested above some type of common disturbance on your neutral or line feed to affect all three. Breaker contacts going or overheating?

 

I also have some weird effects on my overhead lighting on SwitchLincs. The lights dip for a split second and so fast we thought we were blinking but we can confirm with each other that we both see it most times. It seems to be happening on two or three SwitchLincs at random. Of course LEDs have a fast response to show this dramatically.

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Well, they all share a ground and the neutral.. you might check to see if you have some voltage across the two.

 

 

Jon...

 

Unlikely, as there's a LampLinc on another circuit that sometimes pulsates in unison. Also, no ground wires in the room with the errant KPL. I installed all the wiring using metal conduit and metal boxes (my wife assisted in pulling the wires). Grounding is secured by screwing the device to the box. All splices and devices were double checked using appropriate gauges, most especially receptacles.

 

I take wiring very seriously. All wiring is color coded using black, red, blue, yellow, purple, orange and brown. Neutrals are white or gray which allows installing a box with four separate circuits.  I was a Class A Journeyman electrician in NYC during the '60s. My dad was an electrician--I was probably his first shock B)

 

BTW, switches are fully functional without a ground. If there was a neutral problem, all the buttons on the KPL would be affected, not just the middle four. And certainly not the LampLinc across the room on a different circuit.

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If I press all four buttons sequentially, which I do every time for combination entry,  they all blink together almost exactly as I see in your video but for a distinct number of flashes....maybe four or five times

 

I can guarantee that, no matter how fast you are, you cannot get four button LEDs to synchronize that rapidly, in unison, for the duration shown in the video. The video is a true representation of what is happening, not an artifact. Note also that the Fireplace LED is not blinking

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The devices are all i2CS. It's unlikely that noise can affect devices on a different circuit, but that's what's happening. The only device that's on opposite legs of the split, single-phase electric supply is the HVAC. The phenomenon happens if the HVAC system is on or off.

 

BTW, my wife's dad was a merchant seaman--from Kansas. The seas are somewhat distant B)

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I can guarantee that, no matter how fast you are, you cannot get four button LEDs to synchronize that rapidly, in unison, for the duration shown in the video. The video is a true representation of what is happening, not an artifact. Note also that the Fireplace LED is not blinking

I don't need to be fast or send any signals to do this. The KPL does it itself every time.

 

I press each button, one at a time in a sequence about 1 second apart, and they all flash simultaneously after I am done. They all finish flashing simultaneously. This is not done with  Insteon signals or controls, this is just  built into the KPL functions. The LEDs will not respond to any Insteon controls until it's sequence is done.

 

Your KPL appears to be having this functionality being triggered.

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Hi Stu-

 

I just watched your video.  The blinking on the SLD's looks EXACTLY like what I get with "Blink on TX" enabled on mine.  I suspect that is also what the KPL is doing but since my ISY does not give me the option to enable that feature, I cannot test to see if that is what it would look like.

 

Watch the event viewer when this is happening, I bet you will see traffic.

 

-Xathros

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Hi Stu-

 

I just watched your video.  The blinking on the SLD's looks EXACTLY like what I get with "Blink on TX" enabled on mine.  I suspect that is also what the KPL is doing but since my ISY does not give me the option to enable that feature, I cannot test to see if that is what it would look like.

 

Watch the event viewer when this is happening, I bet you will see traffic.

 

-Xathros

When my Switchlinc Dimmers decided to enable LED on Traffic they didn't have a clean blink on and off like Stu's. They were on solid with off flickering that looked like a data bit stream.

 

Since I cannot ever get past 15 seconds of video I suspect I am getting some  video artifacts also. Perhaps this is due to not having a dropbox account.

 

As per Xathros, this would definitely be worth checking the options for the SwitchLinc though. Careful though, as I find in v5..0.x I have to do a query once in the options box. Until I query it everything just indicates default option settings. I suspect I may have saved as is options on some devices and forced random settings into them before I realised this.

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I'm not especially concerned about the SLD's. In any case, LED Blink on Traffic is unchecked on both SLD's shown in the video. Last night, at about 3:20 am, the light show began and lasted on and off for about 20 min. During that time I observed the LampLinc (2457D2) LED blinked in unison--but then didn't.

 

About the time the LampLinc stopped blinking, two SwitchLinc dimmers began to blink their LEDs. These are not the SLD's shown in the video. Both of these SLD's and the LampLinc are on a different circuit than the errant KPL. These dimmers also have LED Blink on Traffic unchecked (the option is available on the ISY).

 

The pulsating count on the KPL seems consistent, ten blinks. Sometimes the tenth blink has the same duration as the others, sometimes it's quicker. I'm at a total loss as to the cause.

 

One more possible clue. The SwitchLinc labelled Fireplace does not blink, neither do the top two and bottom two LEDs on the errant KPL (remember, it's a 6-button KPL in 8-button mode). Both these devices, the SwitchLinc and the KPL are relays, not dimmers. There are also two more KPL dimmers and a SwitchLinc dimmer that are unaffected.

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When my Switchlinc Dimmers decided to enable LED on Traffic they didn't have a clean blink on and off like Stu's. They were on solid with off flickering that looked like a data bit stream.

 

Since I cannot ever get past 15 seconds of video I suspect I am getting some  video artifacts also. Perhaps this is due to not having a dropbox account.

 

As per Xathros, this would definitely be worth checking the options for the SwitchLinc though. Careful though, as I find in v5..0.x I have to do a query once in the options box. Until I query it everything just indicates default option settings. I suspect I may have saved as is options on some devices and forced random settings into them before I realised this.

@larryllix-

 

You know, now that you mention it,  My blink on TX is more like you described than what Stu's video is showing.  Stu's does look like the blink pattern when in linking mode or beacon test (500ms on / 500ms off) except for the fact that it's the wrong LED's blinking.  Its obviously a programmatic blinking from within the Insteon devices themselves which makes me suspect it's a feature.

 

I saw another discussion here recently that indicated a difference between "Blink on TX" and "Blink on Activity".  To me Blink on TX means blink when this device transmits.  That however is not what this option does on my switchlincs.  Instead, they blink on any Insteon activity.  I wonder if some devices have a different blink on Activity feature that blink as Stu's do.

 

@stusviews -

 

Can you shoot another video of the same set of devices when they are not actively pulsating and operate the switchlincs on/off while shooting?

 

-Xathros

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You know, now that you mention it,  My blink on TX is more like you described than what Stu's video is showing.  Stu's does look like the blink pattern when in linking mode or beacon test (500ms on / 500ms off) except for the fact that it's the wrong LED's blinking.  Its obviously a programmatic blinking from within the Insteon devices themselves which makes me suspect it's a feature.

 

I saw another discussion here recently that indicated a difference between "Blink on TX" and "Blink on Activity".  To me Blink on TX means blink when this device transmits.  That however is not what this option does on my switchlincs.  Instead, they blink on any Insteon activity.  I wonder if some devices have a different blink on Activity feature that blink as Stu's do.

.....

-Xathros

Another thought I had with the blinking is these devices are not dimmers and perhaps the LEDs have no analogue brightness levels.

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Stu,

 

Have you tried "playing" with the LED brightness option to see if rewriting the device(s) eprom changes anything?

 

What ISY firmware are you running?

 

The LED brightness is set to low values every night and restored in the morning. There are 10 devices involved in changing the LED brightness, the On/Off KPL that pulsates, one SwitchLinc relay, two KPL dimmers and six SwitchLinc dimmers.

 

I'm on v.4.3.10 Firmware and UI. The ISY is a 994i Pro with an added network and Z-Wave modules. I'll probably update to 4.3.20 later today.

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