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Home Automation fits and starts - mostly success...

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  • #31
    Thanks for this series of posts, Randy. We're about where you were when you first posted - about 60 days in Homeseer, getting comfortable with it, working through the nuances, figuring out what we want it to be someday. You've provided a couple of terrific takeaways for us: the practical use of the GEM and the EDS/one-wire setup are of particular interest.

    Great stuff, Randy!

    -Bill

    Comment


    • #32
      Originally posted by ServiceXp View Post
      I know those pictures are old, but I thought I might bring it to your attention.

      It looks like there are 1 or 2 aluminum strands that are above the lug on the 100 amp breaker?
      I missed this post when you made it back in September. Thanks for pointing that out, but I think it is a trick of the light in that photo. Here is a crop from the one at the top of the post



      As you can see, it is clean. If I remember correctly those are not stranded, they are bus bars. They were provided with the panel from GE. It was originally designed as a split 200A panel and the lower half was for electric baseboard heating. The upper 100A breaker is for the bus supplying breakers 11-21 and the 50A breaker below supplies the bus for 4-10 and 22-29. The 100A was for heat and the 50A was for the rest of the house. The house was built in the early 70's. I have since had natural gas run to the house and converted the home to hot water baseboard heating. The lower half of the panel is now providing circuits for the basement, air conditioners and other additions.

      Randy Prade
      Aurora, CO
      Prades.net

      PHLocation - Pushover - EasyTrigger - UltraECM3 - Ultra1Wire3 - Arduino

      Comment


      • #33
        Originally posted by KandB View Post
        Thanks for this series of posts, Randy. We're about where you were when you first posted - about 60 days in Homeseer, getting comfortable with it, working through the nuances, figuring out what we want it to be someday. You've provided a couple of terrific takeaways for us: the practical use of the GEM and the EDS/one-wire setup are of particular interest.

        Great stuff, Randy!

        -Bill
        I'm glad it gave you ideas. It has since evolved a lot. I will try to post an update soon.
        Randy Prade
        Aurora, CO
        Prades.net

        PHLocation - Pushover - EasyTrigger - UltraECM3 - Ultra1Wire3 - Arduino

        Comment


        • #34
          WOW Great read!
          so stoked and motivated to get my hs stuff going once my kitchen / house remodel is done.
          HW - i5 4570T @2.9ghz runs @11w | 8gb ram | 128gb ssd OS - Win10 x64

          HS - HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.435

          Plugins - BLRF 2.0.94.0 | Concord 4 3.1.13.10 | HSBuddy 3.9.605.5 | HSTouch Server 3.0.0.68 | RFXCOM 30.0.0.36 | X10 3.0.0.36 | Z-Wave 3.0.1.190

          Hardware - EdgePort/4 DB9 Serial | RFXCOM 433MHz USB Transceiver | Superbus 2000 for Concord 4 | TI103 X-10 Interface | WGL Designs W800 RF | Z-Net Z-Wave Interface

          Comment


          • #35
            Hello, Thank you so much for posting your info. I am actually following your lead. I was needing to know. Did you solder the dual CT together? also looks like you cut the leads. also I flipped the polarity on the duals. If you could explain the wiring in more detail their instructions are a bit blah to me.

            I would also like to know your thoughts on the temp sensor. Seems they are out of them. Is there other options?

            I also would like to meter my water. I am on a my own well. However, it would be nice to meter the amount of water for the filters. But I would need a way to wirelessly connect such devices to this as the well is in another building. any thoughts on this would be great.
            Attached Files
            Last edited by Mwillis; April 14th, 2016, 05:22 PM.

            Comment


            • #36
              Originally posted by Mwillis View Post
              Hello, Thank you so much for posting your info. I am actually following your lead. I was needing to know. Did you solder the dual CT together? also looks like you cut the leads. also I flipped the polarity on the duals. If you could explain the wiring in more detail their instructions are a bit blah to me.

              I would also like to know your thoughts on the temp sensor. Seems they are out of them. Is there other options?

              I also would like to meter my water. I am on a my own well. However, it would be nice to meter the amount of water for the filters. But I would need a way to wirelessly connect such devices to this as the well is in another building. any thoughts on this would be great.
              Brultech's manual is very comprehensive, perhaps you don't have it. I tried to attach it but it is too big. I don't know where it is on their server but have uploaded a copy to mine. www.prades.net/misc/GEM-Man_ver_4.0_.pdf

              You have to identify your CT as to which type they are. CT installation and identification begins on page 18 of the manual. I used mostly CT40s which are "type B" CTs. A Type B outputs a current signal. On 240 volt circuits like our dryer, air conditioners and stove, where there was no current flow through neutral, I used a single CT and configured it accordingly. For two sub-panels where there was dissimilar loading on the two phases, I did cut and solder the leads of the two CTs together so that it was easier to connect. If I remember correctly the "type B" CTs wire in phase and in parallel, so I soldered them together to a single pair of leads. I used heat shrink tubing on the joints. That was only to make the connection to the GEM board a little cleaner and easier to connect.

              For a single temperature probe inside the GEM cabinet I used a DS18B20 on a lead. They are about $18 for 10 shipped from China on eBay. The GEM will reliably support 4-6 probes, depending on the lead length and topology. I chose to go with EDS OneWire servers for my temperature monitoring. They are more forgiving of longer leads and unusual topology. I have three servers with a total of about 50 probes.

              I didn't use water flow measurement, but you can use any flow meter that generates pulses relative to flow. They are described on page 5 and 6 of the attached manual. I cannot think immediately of a way to do it wireless, but a 2-conductor wire can go a long way for slow pulses. I would probably terminate it in an opto-isolator to protect the GEM - a long wire is a very good antenna for ESD in a lightning storm.
              Randy Prade
              Aurora, CO
              Prades.net

              PHLocation - Pushover - EasyTrigger - UltraECM3 - Ultra1Wire3 - Arduino

              Comment


              • #37
                Originally posted by rprade View Post
                Brultech's manual is very comprehensive, perhaps you don't have it. I tried to attach it but it is too big. I don't know where it is on their server but have uploaded a copy to mine. www.prades.net/misc/GEM-Man_ver_4.0_.pdf

                You have to identify your CT as to which type they are. CT installation and identification begins on page 18 of the manual. I used mostly CT40s which are "type B" CTs. A Type B outputs a current signal. On 240 volt circuits like our dryer, air conditioners and stove, where there was no current flow through neutral, I used a single CT and configured it accordingly. For two sub-panels where there was dissimilar loading on the two phases, I did cut and solder the leads of the two CTs together so that it was easier to connect. If I remember correctly the "type B" CTs wire in phase and in parallel, so I soldered them together to a single pair of leads. I used heat shrink tubing on the joints. That was only to make the connection to the GEM board a little cleaner and easier to connect.

                For a single temperature probe inside the GEM cabinet I used a DS18B20 on a lead. They are about $18 for 10 shipped from China on eBay. The GEM will reliably support 4-6 probes, depending on the lead length and topology. I chose to go with EDS OneWire servers for my temperature monitoring. They are more forgiving of longer leads and unusual topology. I have three servers with a total of about 50 probes.

                I didn't use water flow measurement, but you can use any flow meter that generates pulses relative to flow. They are described on page 5 and 6 of the attached manual. I cannot think immediately of a way to do it wireless, but a 2-conductor wire can go a long way for slow pulses. I would probably terminate it in an opto-isolator to protect the GEM - a long wire is a very good antenna for ESD in a lightning storm.
                Thank you. No I did not have the manual. I only had a sheet of paper that came with the product that briefly describes things but not in the detail as what I just Downloaded from you. Mine is a newer model but the info I need is the same.

                Comment


                • #38
                  Ben and Paul are both very helpful and responsive to emails, if you have any questions. I will also be happy to discuss it here. At two years in, it remains the best single purchase I made in this whole process. I hope to get around to updating this thread, the project has matured nicely.
                  Randy Prade
                  Aurora, CO
                  Prades.net

                  PHLocation - Pushover - EasyTrigger - UltraECM3 - Ultra1Wire3 - Arduino

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    Originally posted by rprade View Post
                    Ben and Paul are both very helpful and responsive to emails, if you have any questions. I will also be happy to discuss it here. At two years in, it remains the best single purchase I made in this whole process. I hope to get around to updating this thread, the project has matured nicely.
                    I plan on doing a post similar to this. I'm still in the testing phase. Figuring out what works. I am actually doing a ton of advanced things. Its quite the challenge cause not only am I doing all this but I'm attempting to reduce the energy foot print as much as possible. This is very challenging as I am also wanting this to be fully Voice controlled, with independently audio output and input. I am planning on using a XAP800 for audio routing. and kinects for mic input, VERY hard to do with a Virtual Machine.

                    Who is Ben and Paul?

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Originally posted by Mwillis View Post
                      Who is Ben and Paul?
                      Don't they sell ice cream
                      HS 3.0.0.548: 1976 Devices 1156 Events
                      Z-Wave 3.0.1.262: 123 Nodes on one Z-Net

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        Originally posted by sparkman View Post
                        Don't they sell ice cream
                        They are the two technical help guys at Brultech. You can reach them at their published email address.

                        They may sell ice cream, but they are on your side of the border.
                        Randy Prade
                        Aurora, CO
                        Prades.net

                        PHLocation - Pushover - EasyTrigger - UltraECM3 - Ultra1Wire3 - Arduino

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          Originally posted by Mwillis View Post
                          I plan on doing a post similar to this. I'm still in the testing phase. Figuring out what works. I am actually doing a ton of advanced things. Its quite the challenge cause not only am I doing all this but I'm attempting to reduce the energy foot print as much as possible. This is very challenging as I am also wanting this to be fully Voice controlled, with independently audio output and input. I am planning on using a XAP800 for audio routing. and kinects for mic input, VERY hard to do with a Virtual Machine.

                          Who is Ben and Paul?
                          With the granularity, frequency of reporting and resolution of the Brultech, we were able to find 100-150 watts, several watts at a time. We also added some automation to reduce our average footprint by about another 100 watts. That has paid for the GEM in two years.

                          Not related to the GEM, but some automation rules on our hydronic heating system has also reduced our natural gas footprint by 10-15%.
                          Randy Prade
                          Aurora, CO
                          Prades.net

                          PHLocation - Pushover - EasyTrigger - UltraECM3 - Ultra1Wire3 - Arduino

                          Comment


                          • #43
                            okay so I finally got in all the CT's I needed. I started hooking them up. I only hooked up the mains. However, I am not getting any info in my ultraECM????


                            not sure what is wrong. any advice would be helpful

                            Comment


                            • #44
                              Originally posted by Mwillis View Post
                              okay so I finally got in all the CT's I needed. I started hooking them up. I only hooked up the mains. However, I am not getting any info in my ultraECM????


                              not sure what is wrong. any advice would be helpful
                              The first step is to look at GEM interface live data and see if it is working.

                              The second step is to see if UltraECM is connected, then see if there are database inserts on the UltraECM status page. If you have all of that it is working.
                              Randy Prade
                              Aurora, CO
                              Prades.net

                              PHLocation - Pushover - EasyTrigger - UltraECM3 - Ultra1Wire3 - Arduino

                              Comment


                              • #45
                                Originally posted by rprade View Post
                                The first step is to look at GEM interface live data and see if it is working.
                                How Do I do this?
                                Originally posted by rprade View Post
                                The second step is to see if UltraECM is connected, then see if there are database inserts on the UltraECM status page. If you have all of that it is working.
                                Informational Watchdog Timer reconnect attempt succeeded.
                                Apr-25 20:46:46 Informational Brultech ECM Device connection to 172.16.0.8 (172.16.0.8:8000)
                                Apr-25 20:46:46 Warning Watchdog Timer indicates No response response from the Brultech device '172.16.0.8:8000' for 1123 seconds.. Attempting to reconnect ...

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