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Best way to control fans during Summer?

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    Best way to control fans during Summer?

    While we have air conditioning, and it's working well, we also have latex bedding that tends to get kind of hot to sleep in at times. We love it otherwise.

    I'm considering having the ceiling fan turn on during the night, but only when it's hot outside.

    What's the best way to approach this?

    I'd like to avoid making HS3 do more work than necessary. The window for this is from 2am until sunrise, and typically only from April to October. Thus it would seem sensible to narrow down the window when HS3 has to bother minding this Event.

    Any suggestions on where to start? Or advice what NOT to do?

    #2
    First thing, fans (I assume ceiling fans, but true for all fans) are only good if someone is in the room. It's important to note that. A fan in an empty room is a waste of money.

    Secondly, why are you concerned with the outside temp? I do mine based on occupancy (When possible) and adjust speed based on the temp in the room. I also do "not" concern about the state of the A/C. If I could control the direction of the fan I might (Heat on = Reverse fan). As it is when the heat is on (Which is super rare) we still let it stay cool, so no need for fans in the common rooms. In our bedrooms at night this is different.

    I do this year round. In the winter when it's cool in the house because it's opened up, the ceiling fans don't normally come on in common areas because there is no need for them.

    Now, if you are just looking to turn them on certain times of the year between certain hours, that should be easy right? Just set up an event to turn them on at a certain time only if it is in a certain date range. Do the reverse for turning it off.
    MeiAutomtion Home

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      #3
      Originally posted by sirmeili View Post
      First thing, fans (I assume ceiling fans, but true for all fans) are only good if someone is in the room. It's important to note that. A fan in an empty room is a waste of money.

      Secondly, why are you concerned with the outside temp? I do mine based on occupancy (When possible) and adjust speed based on the temp in the room. I also do "not" concern about the state of the A/C. If I could control the direction of the fan I might (Heat on = Reverse fan). As it is when the heat is on (Which is super rare) we still let it stay cool, so no need for fans in the common rooms. In our bedrooms at night this is different.

      I do this year round. In the winter when it's cool in the house because it's opened up, the ceiling fans don't normally come on in common areas because there is no need for them.

      Now, if you are just looking to turn them on certain times of the year between certain hours, that should be easy right? Just set up an event to turn them on at a certain time only if it is in a certain date range. Do the reverse for turning it off.
      Occupancy is a hassle to determine accurately, consistently and reliably enough to avoid spousal scorn. WAF and all that.

      Outside heat is perhaps a fair indicator of whether or not we're acclimated into hotter weather.

      We have automated blinds and geothermal HVAC. We generally do not open the windows all that often.

      So with all that, what's the least problematic way to set up events based on a window of date & time? Having programmed various systems over the years there are often more BAD ways to waste CPU cycles 'waiting' than there are good ways to set up event queues.

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        #4
        I've just started using EasyTrigger schedules and am very impressed. I'd use that for the daily schedule. Not sure about the annual, maybe a secondary condition based on the month. Are you already monitoring outside temp? If not, WeatherXML would be a good way to do that and setup a condition based on that. On second though, I might make the outside temp the trigger and the daily and yearly schedules the conditions.

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          #5
          I get live outside temp from my thermostat gateway. The Honeywell setup includes being able to add an actual outside unit that collects both temp and humidity values.

          I'll look at Easytrigger, thanks!

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            #6
            Personally here I have two of my 6 ceiling fans connected to HS. The two on the main floor. One is in the main room that is open to both floors with 20 ft ceilings. That room doesn't have much activity, but we have it run to move the air between the floors. The other is in the living room that we are in all the time. I have them both turn on in the morning, and turn off when we go to bed (determined by our go to sleep button on the way up the stairs). Only other automation is I turn the fan from low to medium when the temp in the room raises above my thresholds. In the winter time I change the rotation and keep them on low all the time.

            Agreed occupancy is too much to deal with and a ceiling fan really doesn't use that much electricity. Plus the wife wouldn't be happy with it. Honestly the way the basic automation is currently setup, I don't even think she knows. Best kinda automation is sometimes the simp type that no one notices.

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              #7
              Here's a couple of possible ways to turn the fan on:

              Click image for larger version

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              The first would only be evaluated once per day at 2 AM, so if the temperature increased after 2, the fan would not be turned on. The second would be evaluated every time the temperature changed, but if it doesn't change often, the additional cpu load would be minimal. It would account for a possible temp increase after 2. Both would only trigger if the fan is not already on. You would need an event at sunrise to turn the fan off.

              Cheers
              Al
              HS 3.0.0.548: 1990 Devices 1172 Events
              Z-Wave 3.0.1.262: 126 Nodes on one Z-Net

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                #8
                My ceiling fans go on when the HVAC starts to run and go off when the HVAC cycles off, unless the room is occupied. Elliott

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