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Insteon Micro On/Off - Flood Light Motion Sensor


zg825

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I am almost done with my construction on my home and just installed the insteon switches. My electrician is about to put up flood lights that I will supply. I have been reading up on the various forums that it's possible to get a flood light with motion sensor that works both with the insteon switch (to turn on and off) and also so the flood light will be activated by motion when the insteon switch is in off mode through the use of a Micro On/Off. My guess is that the Micro On/Off is connected to the Motion sensor piece of the flood light so when the motion sensor triggers, it send a signal to the Micro On/Off which then triggers the Insteon Switch to the on mode. If someone has done this, what do you set up the Micro On/Off as (controller, responder, both?), any other settings you should apply? Also, what connections should be made from the motion sensor to the Micro On/Off? I appreciate any tips anyone can provide

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Don't have a lot of time to write. So one key thing about any 3rd party motion flood light is to ensure it's NOT using dual bright technology. If so it's not compatible without gutting the entire unit. At that point you might as well have bought the correct one or built one yourself!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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When I built my house, I used a standard flood light with an inlinelinc dimmer and separate motion sensor with it. I went this way because it allows me to disconnect the sensor from the light for times when I don't want the motion sensor to kick in. 

For example, my entertainment scene turns on the flood lights so people can clearly see the all times. Had I done it with a hardwired sensor, once tripped, the sensor would override the settings and turn the lights off. By keeping them separate, I am able to control the lights separately without the motion sensor kicking in. Late at night when I want the sensor to be used, then the program activates allowing motion lights. 

I used a dimmer because I knew I would be using really bright bulbs. This allows me to dim them for normal use and full blast when on the motion. I also prefer the ramping effect of a dimmer vs. a light simply turning on. 

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Thanks for the reply. When you say separate motion sensor, are you using a insteon motion sensor (because I didn't think they made an outdoor one). The flood lights I am looking at have one integrated, but I think I should be able to open the back of them up and hook up the Micro on/off to the motion sensor. 

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8 minutes ago, zg825 said:

Thanks for the reply. When you say separate motion sensor, are you using a insteon motion sensor (because I didn't think they made an outdoor one). The flood lights I am looking at have one integrated, but I think I should be able to open the back of them up and hook up the Micro on/off to the motion sensor. 

My outdoor sensors are insteon sensors. I haven't had any issues here in NC with our storms here.

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Just an FIY, the sense input on the insteon ( switch input on the Aeotec zwave, or aux on the Enerwave zwave) units are basically controlled by the presence/non-presence of the line voltage.

(In the case of the Aeotec, the input is labeled "Wall Switch" and is two terminals. Connecting line to the outer/left most terminal activates the switch.)

I have used both of these zwave versions with the line voltage out of a Stanley PR511 outdoor sensor as the OP.

I already owned the PR511when I read this article:

How to Wire an Insteon 2443-222 Micro Switch to a Motion Activated Floodlight - HandymanHowto.com

 

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  • 1 year later...

OK, so I have a bunch of LEDenet strips installed using the Magic Home LEDenet controller:

https://wisepick.org/best-outdoor-flood-lights/

Fairly unimpressed at this point. The app doesn't allow you to create scenes for the W, just RGB so I can't set a ramp rate when turning on the WW leds. Perhaps this is just a limitation of hte app itself.

So it occurs to me I should have done a bit more due diligence when choosing a solution. Fortunately the RGBW led strips can be run off pretty much any RGBW controller.

It's nice to have an app or remote where I can select a custom color quickly. But I also absolutely need the following and NRs aren't going to cut it given how much time I'd spend messing with them to deal with scenes mixed in with other insteon devices.

What I need is a solution where I can add an RGBW light strip to an ISY scene with other insteon devices and be able to set the RGBW levels and ramp rates for the that RGBW device in the scene that I've added it to. Just like I can with any other insteon device that is a single channel, but in this case 4 channels per device.

Before I go and spend the time to get the polyglot Magic UFO stuff in stalled on my Synology in a docker container, I'd hate to go through the trouble only to discover that I can't mix RGBW lights in basic ISY scenes. 

Will either the polyglot or z-wave solution allow this? Will both or do neither offer this?

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1 hour ago, TimBramer said:

OK, so I have a bunch of LEDenet strips installed using the Magic Home LEDenet controller:

https://wisepick.org/best-outdoor-flood-lights/

Fairly unimpressed at this point. The app doesn't allow you to create scenes for the W, just RGB so I can't set a ramp rate when turning on the WW leds. Perhaps this is just a limitation of hte app itself.

So it occurs to me I should have done a bit more due diligence when choosing a solution. Fortunately the RGBW led strips can be run off pretty much any RGBW controller.

It's nice to have an app or remote where I can select a custom color quickly. But I also absolutely need the following and NRs aren't going to cut it given how much time I'd spend messing with them to deal with scenes mixed in with other insteon devices.

What I need is a solution where I can add an RGBW light strip to an ISY scene with other insteon devices and be able to set the RGBW levels and ramp rates for the that RGBW device in the scene that I've added it to. Just like I can with any other insteon device that is a single channel, but in this case 4 channels per device.

Before I go and spend the time to get the polyglot Magic UFO stuff in stalled on my Synology in a docker container, I'd hate to go through the trouble only to discover that I can't mix RGBW lights in basic ISY scenes. 

Will either the polyglot or z-wave solution allow this? Will both or do neither offer this?

This is posted on the wrong forum as it has nothing to do with this topic. To get people to answer, I would create a new post under the questions and answer sub forum or magic home sub-forum

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  • 2 months later...

For what it's worth, I used the wiring from the link that @drmacro linked to above for all my flood lights.  A few important things to note:
1) Pretty much any LED-integrated flood light WILL NOT WORK.  These units either don't provide access to the wiring, or they step-down to low voltage *BEFORE* the motion sensor, such that you don't get line-voltage out of the motion sensor to connect to the sense line of the micro On/Off.  I recommend you just buy the old-school "halogen" (although I used LED) bulb fixtures.

2) Do not have the line to the flood light switched; if you do this, then you will not be able to control the flood light if that switch is off.  (I suppose you could have a "master" switch that forces them all off, but you would need to ensure that master switch is on).

3) I do believe that you can "disconnect" the sense from the On/Off part such that the controller does not automatically turn on (or off) the responder (light) when motion stops.  At least I THINK you can do that -- I have not tried.

For some reason, one of two of my units seem to get stuck on.  I'm not sure why this is the case, and if I turn it off "by hand" (meaning from my ISY) then it stays off until the next night.  I'm not sure if it's a busted motion sensor or busted day/night sensor or what.  I haven't spent much time exploring it, but it is one specific unit that is behaving this way.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hello, all --

Maybe one of you folks can help?  I'm looking for recommendations for an outdoor-rated motion sensor to interface with an ISY994i that will do what Smarthome's original motion sensor did.  I had purchased their Motion Sensor II based on the info in their user manual that stated it was outdoor-capable (it was an earlier version of what is currently posted).  Well, it's not.  Found out the hard way: 2 failed before I revisited the specs.  And when I contacted Smarthome, they verified as much -- it's not outdoor-rated -- and they have no plans to offer an outdoor-rated devices.

My needs are simple: turn on lights when it gets dark, turn them off when it's not, and send a signal when motion is detected.

Is there anything out there that I can use with the ISY, even if I have to add a module or upgrade it.

Regards, and thanks in advance.

PS: Apologies if this is the wrong place to post.

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@nickster -- So long as you have power to where you want to place it, you can combine a Micro-On/Off with, e.g., a "replacement motion sensor" like this item from Home Depot for $22:  https://www.homedepot.com/p/Lithonia-Lighting-Outdoor-180-Detection-Zone-Motion-Sensor-Retrofit-Kit-Bronze-OMS-1000-120-DDB-M6/205507283

Then you will need to wire it in a box.  You will just use the Micro-On/Off as a sensor/controller -- and then have it send on/off to responders in the lights you want it to control.

Note that if you want the light on/off to be separate from the motion detection then you *may* need two Insteon devices: one for motion detection and one for the light controller.  I am not sure if you can use a single Micro On/Off to separate the sensor side from the On/Off side (but I would LOVE to learn that you can!)

Hope this helps!

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On 3/30/2020 at 1:22 PM, Derek Atkins said:

@nickster -- So long as you have power to where you want to place it, you can combine a Micro-On/Off with, e.g., a "replacement motion sensor" like this item from Home Depot for $22:  https://www.homedepot.com/p/Lithonia-Lighting-Outdoor-180-Detection-Zone-Motion-Sensor-Retrofit-Kit-Bronze-OMS-1000-120-DDB-M6/205507283

Then you will need to wire it in a box.  You will just use the Micro-On/Off as a sensor/controller -- and then have it send on/off to responders in the lights you want it to control.

Note that if you want the light on/off to be separate from the motion detection then you *may* need two Insteon devices: one for motion detection and one for the light controller.  I am not sure if you can use a single Micro On/Off to separate the sensor side from the On/Off side (but I would LOVE to learn that you can!)

Hope this helps!

Hello, Derek.

Thanks for the idea.  I had thought of that approach to solve the on/off need, which is to turn on a floodlight fixture and side lights over and near the garage doors, both of which have Insteon modules, but without tearing into the sensor itself, not sure how I would extract the data to turn on interior lights at dusk.

I've seen several other sensors available, such as Z-Wave devices ; any data on them?  I know I'll have to add a Z-Wave module to my ISY, which is probably much easier than adding another electrical box and associated wiring.

Appreciate the response.

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53 minutes ago, nickster said:

I had thought of that approach to solve the on/off need, which is to turn on a floodlight fixture and side lights over and near the garage doors, both of which have Insteon modules, but without tearing into the sensor itself, not sure how I would extract the data to turn on interior lights at dusk.

As mentioned above, you can connect  any constant power line to the motion sensor shown above and micro switch, along with the micro switch sense wire to the motion sensor load wire. Then use the ISY either via programs to have the micro switch turn on the lights you want, when you want, based on schedules, sunrises, sunsets etc. 

I think from memory, it would be: incoming white to both Motion Sensor white and to the micro switch white. Same with black. Then the red load from the motion sensor to the sense 1 of the micro switch. The load of the micro switch would not be used. In this manner, the motion sensor should trigger the micro switch on and off, which the ISY can read and react to, however you want or need, such as turning on the other switches you want on via a program. 

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8 hours ago, nickster said:

Hello, Derek.

Thanks for the idea.  I had thought of that approach to solve the on/off need, which is to turn on a floodlight fixture and side lights over and near the garage doors, both of which have Insteon modules, but without tearing into the sensor itself, not sure how I would extract the data to turn on interior lights at dusk.

I've seen several other sensors available, such as Z-Wave devices ; any data on them?  I know I'll have to add a Z-Wave module to my ISY, which is probably much easier than adding another electrical box and associated wiring.

Appreciate the response.

Not really. It's not as simple as buying 2 things.  Since you do not have zwave devices now you would need to build it's network to ensure strong communication. Depending on where your isy is located in relation to the light in question, this could mean a multitude of devices at 40-50 dollars a pop 

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9 hours ago, nickster said:

I've seen several other sensors available, such as Z-Wave devices ; any data on them?  I know I'll have to add a Z-Wave module to my ISY, which is probably much easier than adding another electrical box and associated wiring.

In addition to the response from lilyoy1, I would add that (unfortunately) not all z-wave devices have light sensors.  At least, the couple that I purchased do not.  Maybe others do.

For the desire to trigger lights based at dusk, a couple of ideas come to mind.  One, you could trigger them based upon time relative to sunset or, two, you could use an insteon motion sensor in a protected location to detect darkness (such as near a window).  I have used insteon motion sensors outside for several years.  I do, however, take care not to expose them directly to precipitation.  I also have mostly first-generation sensors.

I have experienced one failure of a motion sensor.  I replaced it with a second-generation sensor.  I absolutely recall that it was claimed to be rated for exterior use.  I wonder what changed.

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1 hour ago, lilyoyo1 said:

Also, for the light sensor to work properly for those that do, most need to be hardwired to update accordingly

I notice that the second-generation insteon motion sensor has the option to power via usb.  I did not know that battery motion sensors did not update status properly.

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Sorry for the long delay but sheltering-in-place with 2 active grandsons has kept us somewhat occupied (sigh).  Anyway, I'll try to respond to all your comments, all of which are greatly appreciated.

dbwarner5, I originally had a MS I which triggered an Insteon 2475 In-Line on/off switch.  This turned on the spotlights above the garage doors as well as the sidelights via an Insteon 2466 Switch.  Dusk was signaled to control indoor lighting.  That's basically what I did with the white/black/red/yellow connector wires.  All was well until the MS I was obsoleted and the MS II came along.

oberkc, there's no place where I can put one that would not be affected by controlled lighting.  I have lights coming on and off EVERYWHERE, including front porch and back deck.  Also, finding an outdoor-rated Z-Wave device that reports light levels has been frustrating.  And, yes It WAS outdoor rated; I still have the downloaded User Manual to prove it.  In fact, I'm waiting for SmartHome to reimburse me for the 2 that failed since I purchased them for outdoor use (false advertising?).  What happened?  Probably went the same way of the Insteon 2494 Motion Sensor Floodlight -- an all in one unit that just magically disappeared.  Amazing...

lilyoyo1, you're right about insuring Z-Wave communication, as the ISY is on the other side of the house from the garage and I'm not eager to build another network.

Working with the MS II was a bear; I had to create several additional programs to do the same simple tasks the MS I did all by itself.  When I finally got it up and running and working, I then connected it to USB power.  In retrospect, I think that's when things went south.  My guess is that the unit can not keep moisture out when externally powered -- an issue when we sometimes get sideways rain here.  That gave me an idea.

So I started looking into shielding the device from the elements.  Found several suggestions using silicone, Saran Wrap, packaging wrap and the like.  That gave me another idea.  Since I have 2 dead units, I can use them to determine the ingress point and plug accordingly.  If I can get a few microseconds to do so I'll try and report back.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it!

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On 4/2/2020 at 7:44 PM, nickster said:

Working with the MS II was a bear; I had to create several additional programs to do the same simple tasks the MS I did all by itself.  When I finally got it up and running and working, I then connected it to USB power.  In retrospect, I think that's when things went south.  My guess is that the unit can not keep moisture out when externally powered -- an issue when we sometimes get sideways rain here. 

Good luck! I used 5 MSIs for driveway detection for many years w/o any problems. Life span was typically about 3-5 years. I have had to replace now 3 of them with MSII.One is protected, two are not. I tried putting clear nail polish across all joints etc. So far, I have had 3 fail. 

Likewise, I have replaced some very old X10 motion sensors inside the house is certain rooms / closets with MSII's. What a disaster that has been. Like you, I have had to write / re-write programs to get them to all to work consistently and reliably. and even then I really am never  sure if they will work.  Some work fine, some dont. Go figure. 

For the driveway, I have decided to move away from MS and go to two photoelectric beams (https://www.homedepot.com/p/SPT-Wired-Indoor-Outdoor-Photoelectric-Dual-Beam-Motion-Sensor-up-to-550-ft-Indoor-180-ft-Outdoor-15-946A/308004053?MERCH=REC-_-rv_categorypages_rr-_-NA-_-308004053-_-N) and connect them to two I/O lincs that I used to use to control garage doors (before garage door openers went to encrypted signals). May also use Insteon wireless open/close sensors for linking to ISY of which I have two that I havent installed yet as planned on two pole barn doors, but generally want to get away from batteries. 

 

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  • 8 months later...
On 4/10/2020 at 2:44 PM, dbwarner5 said:

For the driveway, I have decided to move away from MS and go to two photoelectric beams (https://www.homedepot.com/p/SPT-Wired-Indoor-Outdoor-Photoelectric-Dual-Beam-Motion-Sensor-up-to-550-ft-Indoor-180-ft-Outdoor-15-946A/308004053?MERCH=REC-_-rv_categorypages_rr-_-NA-_-308004053-_-N) and connect them to two I/O lincs that I used to use to control garage doors (before garage door openers went to encrypted signals). May also use Insteon wireless open/close sensors for linking to ISY of which I have two that I havent installed yet as planned on two pole barn doors, but generally want to get away from batteries. 

 

Update on the above. This has worked out great. I have the two "sensor" sides of the beam wired to two separate I/O Lines that then report to the ISY. Have had them installed now for 6 months w/o any issues. Work well and reliably and are very discreet. 

But am still looking for an elegant solution for a Motion Sense Spotlight that can talk easily to the ISY. Why this doesn't exist is puzzling Insteon moves more into the "security" area. 

Thanks.

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2 hours ago, dbwarner5 said:

Update on the above. This has worked out great. I have the two "sensor" sides of the beam wired to two separate I/O Lines that then report to the ISY. Have had them installed now for 6 months w/o any issues. Work well and reliably and are very discreet. 

But am still looking for an elegant solution for a Motion Sense Spotlight that can talk easily to the ISY. Why this doesn't exist is puzzling Insteon moves more into the "security" area. 

Thanks.

I think it's more of people trying to use insteon for security vs insteon trying to move into security. 

If you have zwave, there's an outdoor motion sensor that can be integrated into a flood light

 

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07KP4T3MS/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_fabc_Wbb3FbHWHNNDJ?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1

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