www.homeseer.com    
 

Go Back   HomeSeer Message Board > HomeSeer Products & Services > HomeSeer Hardware > HomeSeer Wall Dimmers & Switches

HomeSeer Wall Dimmers & Switches Forum for HomeSeer Wall Dimmers & Switches

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old February 17th, 2017, 09:26 AM
Kevin L Kevin L is offline
Seer Plus
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Gulf Cove, FL
Posts: 108
3-Way or 4-Way wiring with all HS-WD100+ dimmers

Hi, all,

Searched, but didn't find an answer.

I'm designing my next home and am now doing the electrical plan. Though I prefer hardwired over wireless (my current home has Centralite's LiteJet system) it seems many of the automation systems, including HS3, are ignoring most hardwired systems. My current home is still running HS2 Pro even though I own HS3 Pro. IAE, because of this lack of support, I'm going to go all Z-Wave in the new house and would like some opinions and/or advice.

I want to future-proof as much as possible, so having full wiring at all boxes is likely the safest. I realize it will be less expensive to use one WD100+ wired to power and load, then use WA100+ switches with travelers and neutrals at the remote locations. Two potential downfalls to this: if the WD100+ fails, then the remotes will not control the load. Second is you do not have the LEDs to let you know the dimming level, so if the WA100+ is in a location where you cannot see the load, then you don't have an indication of the level of dimming.

Given the above, other than the additional cost of the dimmers and/or switches and the cost of 3-wire cabling to all boxes, are there any pitfalls to using all WD100+ dimmers for all 3-way or 4-way locations?

BTW, I will be using HS3 Pro in the new home.

Thanks for your help,
Kevin
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old February 17th, 2017, 10:44 AM
cheeryfool's Avatar
cheeryfool cheeryfool is offline
Super Seer
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Jersey Shore
Posts: 1,588
I don't believe there's any way to do that.
__________________
cheeryfool
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old February 17th, 2017, 10:59 AM
sirmeili sirmeili is offline
Seer Master
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Sebring, FL
Posts: 1,147
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin L View Post
Hi, all,

Searched, but didn't find an answer.

I'm designing my next home and am now doing the electrical plan. Though I prefer hardwired over wireless (my current home has Centralite's LiteJet system) it seems many of the automation systems, including HS3, are ignoring most hardwired systems. My current home is still running HS2 Pro even though I own HS3 Pro. IAE, because of this lack of support, I'm going to go all Z-Wave in the new house and would like some opinions and/or advice.

I want to future-proof as much as possible, so having full wiring at all boxes is likely the safest. I realize it will be less expensive to use one WD100+ wired to power and load, then use WA100+ switches with travelers and neutrals at the remote locations. Two potential downfalls to this: if the WD100+ fails, then the remotes will not control the load. Second is you do not have the LEDs to let you know the dimming level, so if the WA100+ is in a location where you cannot see the load, then you don't have an indication of the level of dimming.

Given the above, other than the additional cost of the dimmers and/or switches and the cost of 3-wire cabling to all boxes, are there any pitfalls to using all WD100+ dimmers for all 3-way or 4-way locations?

BTW, I will be using HS3 Pro in the new home.

Thanks for your help,
Kevin
1) I'm kinda surprised that the remotes don't have LEDs that stay in sync, or that they don't sell remotes with this "Feature". Seems like a no brainer to me. However, in my experience, no one in my house uses those LEDs. They merely just set it to the brightness they want (or let the automatic lights just do it)

2) While not the HS switches and they operate differently (only the bottom of the paddle is used and it's a toggle on/off), you could go with Leviton dimmers and accessory remotes which do sync the LEDs between the main switch and the remotes, and I can verify they not only do 3 and 4 way, but I have a 5 way (1 switch, 3 remotes). I'm sure other z-wave switches do this as well, but I only have personal experience with the Leviton ones. There are downsides to this, such as losing out on the multiple "tap" options.

3) I agree with you on "wired" vs "Wireless", but in this case, since going with Homeseer and the Z-net, I've not had very many issues (except where I assumed there would be issues, like switches in metal boxes). I have installed some Insteon switches, which use powerline as well as RF and have had pretty good luck there, but I've been intrigued by the HS switches and the multiple "taps" they support.
__________________
Thanks,
Frank
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old February 17th, 2017, 12:04 PM
rprade's Avatar
rprade rprade is online now
OverSeer
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Colorado
Posts: 5,897
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin L View Post
Hi, all,

Searched, but didn't find an answer.

...

I want to future-proof as much as possible, so having full wiring at all boxes is likely the safest. I realize it will be less expensive to use one WD100+ wired to power and load, then use WA100+ switches with travelers and neutrals at the remote locations. Two potential downfalls to this: if the WD100+ fails, then the remotes will not control the load. Second is you do not have the LEDs to let you know the dimming level, so if the WA100+ is in a location where you cannot see the load, then you don't have an indication of the level of dimming.

...

Kevin
How do you propose to have two (or more) switches (especially dimmers) controlling the same load?
__________________
Randy Prade
Aurora, CO
Prades.net

"Do or do not, there is no try"
-Yoda

PHLocation - Pushover - EasyTrigger - UltraECM3 - Ultra1Wire3 - Arduino
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old February 17th, 2017, 12:54 PM
Kevin L Kevin L is offline
Seer Plus
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Gulf Cove, FL
Posts: 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by sirmeili View Post
1) I'm kinda surprised that the remotes don't have LEDs that stay in sync, or that they don't sell remotes with this "Feature". Seems like a no brainer to me. However, in my experience, no one in my house uses those LEDs. They merely just set it to the brightness they want (or let the automatic lights just do it)

2) While not the HS switches and they operate differently (only the bottom of the paddle is used and it's a toggle on/off), you could go with Leviton dimmers and accessory remotes which do sync the LEDs between the main switch and the remotes, and I can verify they not only do 3 and 4 way, but I have a 5 way (1 switch, 3 remotes). I'm sure other z-wave switches do this as well, but I only have personal experience with the Leviton ones. There are downsides to this, such as losing out on the multiple "tap" options.

3) I agree with you on "wired" vs "Wireless", but in this case, since going with Homeseer and the Z-net, I've not had very many issues (except where I assumed there would be issues, like switches in metal boxes). I have installed some Insteon switches, which use powerline as well as RF and have had pretty good luck there, but I've been intrigued by the HS switches and the multiple "taps" they support.
Thanks for the info, Frank. I haven't broken ground on the home yet, so installing switches and dimmers is a good 10-12 months away. Right now I'm going with the HomeSeer dimmers and switches, but that could change. I'm focused on Z-Wave since that seems to have the most focus now, but Zigbee is a good alternative if it picks up more support. I'm just trying to wire the best way to keep my options open for the future.

I like the HomeSeer product since they operate the way most people are accustomed to Decora-style switches to work. Since I'm in Florida, we do get a fair number of visitors and there isn't the time or inclination to train guests on how the switches work, so I want 'hit the top, light goes on, hit the bottom, light goes off.' Ten years of keypads in my current house and my wife still messes things up.

The LED feedback isn't that important, but would be a nice feature.

I'm not concerned about metal boxes. All new construction here uses plastic. Plus, with the amount of dimmers, switches, and fan controls in the house, the mesh should be pretty tight.

Thanks again,
Kevin
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old February 17th, 2017, 01:03 PM
Kevin L Kevin L is offline
Seer Plus
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Gulf Cove, FL
Posts: 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by rprade View Post
How do you propose to have two (or more) switches (especially dimmers) controlling the same load?
I suppose you can't, at least with normal switches. I didn't know if Z-Wave dimmers/switches went by last one touched wins.

From what I gather, 3-way and 4-way are only handled by one switch/dimmer and then remotes, is that correct?

Thanks, Randy,
Kevin
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old February 17th, 2017, 01:20 PM
rprade's Avatar
rprade rprade is online now
OverSeer
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Colorado
Posts: 5,897
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin L View Post
I suppose you can't, at least with normal switches. I didn't know if Z-Wave dimmers/switches went by last one touched wins.

From what I gather, 3-way and 4-way are only handled by one switch/dimmer and then remotes, is that correct?

Thanks, Randy,
Kevin
You cannot control the same load with two switches, no matter what type they are. There would be serious consequences with two dimmers controlling the same load if they were at different values. With a binary switch, if either was on, the remainder would not control the load. The eventuality of a switch failing to control the load locally is extremely remote. I've not seen it. There can be instances where automation fails to control the switch, but that could happen with any wireless or hard wired technology.

Yes, you can use several (officially 3, but more would probably work) accessory switches with a dimmer or switch. The accessory switches simply present a resistive value to the traveler wire, one value for the bottom paddle, another for the top paddle and an open connection when neither are pressed. That is also why there are no LEDs on the accessory switch.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old February 17th, 2017, 01:28 PM
sirmeili sirmeili is offline
Seer Master
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Sebring, FL
Posts: 1,147
Quote:
Originally Posted by rprade View Post
Yes, you can use several (officially 3, but more would probably work) accessory switches with a dimmer or switch. The accessory switches simply present a resistive value to the traveler wire, one value for the bottom paddle, another for the top paddle and an open connection when neither are pressed. That is also why there are no LEDs on the accessory switch.
However, it is completely possible to have accessory switches that have LEDs on them. Other manufacturers do this and they work quite well. I know from first hand experience. Look at the Leviton dimming "accessory" switches.

The Levitons do require a hot in addition to the traveler and the neutral, but in a properly wired multi-way switch, this should be present anyways. Cost isn't a huge factor either as they are ~$4 more than the HS accessory switches (however, for those reading, they do only work with the Leviton z-wave switches)

Last edited by sirmeili; February 17th, 2017 at 01:34 PM. Reason: added clarification
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old February 17th, 2017, 01:46 PM
Kevin L Kevin L is offline
Seer Plus
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Gulf Cove, FL
Posts: 108
Thanks, Randy and Frank. It's a good day when one can learn.

Randy, I have had Z-Wave items fail, but never had a standard wall switch fail. That is why it was one of my concerns. I do agree it's unlikely, and it won't cause a big problem if one does fail. I will keep some spares in case it does and I don't have to scramble to find a matching dimmer or switch.

Frank, thanks for the tip on the Leviton accessory with LEDs. I looked it up, and it would do what I want. However, I just don't care for the unorthodox design of the Leviton paddle.

You've both been a great deal of help. On the plus side, using the WA100+ instead of a full dimmer or switch will save me money!

Have a great day,
Kevin
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old February 17th, 2017, 01:50 PM
sirmeili sirmeili is offline
Seer Master
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Sebring, FL
Posts: 1,147
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin L View Post
Thanks, Randy and Frank. It's a good day when one can learn.

Randy, I have had Z-Wave items fail, but never had a standard wall switch fail. That is why it was one of my concerns. I do agree it's unlikely, and it won't cause a big problem if one does fail. I will keep some spares in case it does and I don't have to scramble to find a matching dimmer or switch.

Frank, thanks for the tip on the Leviton accessory with LEDs. I looked it up, and it would do what I want. However, I just don't care for the unorthodox design of the Leviton paddle.

You've both been a great deal of help. On the plus side, using the WA100+ instead of a full dimmer or switch will save me money!

Have a great day,
Kevin
Since switching some to Insteon, I also don't care much for the Leviton paddle style. I had non-HA levitons for dimmers in my house before getting into HA, so it didn't bother me too much. The Insteons are much more like the HS switches (tap top to turn on, bottom to turn off), however, my wife hates them because in standard switches, you normally hit the bottom of the paddle to turn them on (which she is correct on). The levitons match this for turning on lights, but not for turning off. Of course, something can be said for only having to hit a switch in the same way each time to turn it on or off....same can be said for the reverse to. Comes down to personal preference.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old February 17th, 2017, 01:59 PM
Kevin L Kevin L is offline
Seer Plus
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Gulf Cove, FL
Posts: 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by sirmeili View Post
Since switching some to Insteon, I also don't care much for the Leviton paddle style. I had non-HA levitons for dimmers in my house before getting into HA, so it didn't bother me too much. The Insteons are much more like the HS switches (tap top to turn on, bottom to turn off), however, my wife hates them because in standard switches, you normally hit the bottom of the paddle to turn them on (which she is correct on). The levitons match this for turning on lights, but not for turning off. Of course, something can be said for only having to hit a switch in the same way each time to turn it on or off....same can be said for the reverse to. Comes down to personal preference.
WAF is a very important, if not the most important, consideration.

I'm curious. With a normal Decora switch, you hit the top of the paddle to turn on and the bottom to turn off the load. What standard switches does your wife mean?
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old February 17th, 2017, 02:40 PM
sirmeili sirmeili is offline
Seer Master
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Sebring, FL
Posts: 1,147
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin L View Post
WAF is a very important, if not the most important, consideration.

I'm curious. With a normal Decora switch, you hit the top of the paddle to turn on and the bottom to turn off the load. What standard switches does your wife mean?
Maybe I'm wrong then....... I could have sworn she complained about this (She used to be in construction and a site foreman), and I know our Garbage disposal I press the bottom to turn it on and I am about 99% sure that when installing the switch I made sure the side marked "top" was on top.

That said, you are right. Everything I've read says that pressing the top turns on a standard decora switch. It always made sense to me, but I kinda just assumed she knew what she was talking about and our garbage disposal switch kinda confirmed that for me.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old February 17th, 2017, 03:02 PM
Kevin L Kevin L is offline
Seer Plus
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Gulf Cove, FL
Posts: 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by sirmeili View Post
Maybe I'm wrong then....... I could have sworn she complained about this (She used to be in construction and a site foreman), and I know our Garbage disposal I press the bottom to turn it on and I am about 99% sure that when installing the switch I made sure the side marked "top" was on top.

That said, you are right. Everything I've read says that pressing the top turns on a standard decora switch. It always made sense to me, but I kinda just assumed she knew what she was talking about and our garbage disposal switch kinda confirmed that for me.
Maybe she was thinking about toggles where you move the switch from the bottom to the top to turn it on and from the top to the bottom to turn it off.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old February 17th, 2017, 04:28 PM
rprade's Avatar
rprade rprade is online now
OverSeer
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Colorado
Posts: 5,897
Quote:
Originally Posted by sirmeili View Post
However, it is completely possible to have accessory switches that have LEDs on them. Other manufacturers do this and they work quite well. I know from first hand experience. Look at the Leviton dimming "accessory" switches.

The Levitons do require a hot in addition to the traveler and the neutral, but in a properly wired multi-way switch, this should be present anyways. Cost isn't a huge factor either as they are ~$4 more than the HS accessory switches (however, for those reading, they do only work with the Leviton z-wave switches)
I understand that it is possible, they send data over the traveler wire. I suspect it was a cost cutting move to keep the accessory switches dumb. They are essentially the same accessory control that Jasco uses and the two are interchangeable. The Dragontech, HomeSeer and Jasco controls are likely sourced from the same manufacturer. While it is only ~$4 at retail, decisions frequently are made over smaller differences than that at the manufacturing level.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old February 17th, 2017, 09:07 PM
jmaddox jmaddox is offline
Seer Deluxe
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Dallas, Texas
Posts: 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin L View Post
...
I want to future-proof as much as possible, so having full wiring at all boxes is likely the safest. I realize it will be less expensive to use one WD100+ wired to power and load, then use WA100+ switches with travelers and neutrals at the remote locations. Two potential downfalls to this: if the WD100+ fails, then the remotes will not control the load. Second is you do not have the LEDs to let you know the dimming level, so if the WA100+ is in a location where you cannot see the load, then you don't have an indication of the level of dimming. ..

Given the above, other than the additional cost of the dimmers and/or switches and the cost of 3-wire cabling to all boxes ...

BTW, I will be using HS3 Pro in the new home.
Kevin
My understanding is that HS3 can 'link devices' I've not played with that at all but I think that may be your answer. I believe that a linked device mirrors the state... so if you dim to 10% on one, the other also dims to 10% etc.

Purchase all WD100+ switches

I would wire all 3-4 way boxes as typical circuits using 3 strand wiring including a traveler... this way if you ever want to switch out to a normal switch or different technology you have the option. Pick one switch to act as a master, drop power, the load wire, and the 3 way wire into it. That switch is your master and controls the load. Use the 3 wire from the masters box to supply neutral and line to each of the "accessory" switches in a daisy chain. Those switches are not wired to any load. link them in homeseer to the master.

If I'm wrong about how linking devices works, or perhaps you can only link 2 devices, you can still create either scripts or events which mirror the states of each since the WD100+ are instant status devices.

This doesn't solve the problem of what happens if the master dies since it's technically still controlling the load, but it would give you status led's on all accessory switches.

My biggest regret is that the normal accessory switches don't have even a single led to indicate status. I may borrow your idea and replace some or all of my 3 way WA100+ with WD100+s. I really do like having the led's.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old February 18th, 2017, 12:10 PM
jhearty's Avatar
jhearty jhearty is offline
Seer Deluxe
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Colorado
Posts: 354
I agree with the above assessment. I played with Linked Devices and it should work. In my test I linked two HS-WD100+ switches to each other, so switching either one caused the other to follow. You should be able to do this in a looped daisy chain manner when there are more than 2 switches. Expensive way to get the LED status everywhere, but should work.

Edit: I also agree the wiring between switch boxes should be done like normal 3-way wiring in case you want to take out the Z-Wave switches and put normal switches in. If you ever decide to sell the house, automation can sometimes scare off potential buyers.
__________________
John

HomeSeer Version: HS3 ZEE S2 Edition 3.0.0.x; # Devices: ~378; # Events: ~325
Enabled Plug-Ins: EasyTrigger, HSTouch Server, UltraM1G3, weatherXML, Z-Wave
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
3-way switch wiring WD100+ and WA100+ overburn HomeSeer Wall Dimmers & Switches 5 January 28th, 2017 02:51 PM
new HS-WD100+ : A problem garyd9 HomeSeer Wall Dimmers & Switches 2 October 20th, 2016 02:57 PM
HS-WD100+ ETA? mikedr HomeSeer Wall Dimmers & Switches 2 September 15th, 2016 12:31 PM
HS-WD100+ Dimmers Back in Stock! macromark HomeSeer Wall Dimmers & Switches 4 September 6th, 2016 12:15 AM
Wiring for ADICON Modules and TEMP08 Wiring Jim Doolittle General Home Automation Hardware Discussion 10 August 5th, 2004 02:46 PM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 01:29 AM.


Copyright HomeSeer Technologies, LLC