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Author Topic: XPFM Fixture Receiver Malfunctioning?  (Read 5708 times)

sgoodmen

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XPFM Fixture Receiver Malfunctioning?
« on: October 17, 2009, 02:01:57 PM »

I am new to this forum, but am looking for help/guidance. I have lived in my house for almost 7 years and have five recessed lights controlled by an XPFM fixture receiver, with three XPT wall mounted controllers. Up until recently, this system has worked fine, but in the last few months the lights will routinely turn on by the controllers but do not turn off (8 out of 10 times). I can push "Off" numerous times from one controller, or go to a different controller and try, but this often completely fails to turn off the lights. Instead of leaving the lights on all day and night, I often have to shut the power off at the breaker. Oddly, once the lights have cooled off a bit, if I turn the breaker back on (and the lights go back on, of course), I can usually get them to turn off with the wall mounted controllers.

Can anyone tell me, what is going on here? Is this an issue with the XPFM fixture receiver, the wall mounted controllers, or something about my house wiring? I cannot understand why the setup worked fine for years, and all of a sudden stopped working correctly. I'd hate to have to rewire my room to remove the X10 components and put in 3-wire cables so I can install a more standard four-way stitch system.

Your input is most appreciated. Thanks in advance. Steve.
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JeffVolp

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Re: XPFM Fixture Receiver Malfunctioning?
« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2009, 02:44:56 PM »

I cannot understand why the setup worked fine for years, and all of a sudden stopped working correctly.

Problems like this are usually a result of something new being added to the home.  Compact fluorescent lights, a new cellphone, or even any new electrical widget could be the cause.  You might want to read some of the troubleshooting guides here:  http://jvde.us/x10_troubleshooting.htm

Jeff
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Brian H

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Re: XPFM Fixture Receiver Malfunctioning?
« Reply #2 on: October 17, 2009, 04:09:11 PM »

Are the bulbs in the fixtures CFL's?
Have you added or changed anything electronically lately? Even things like a cell phone charger as Jeff mentioned.
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sgoodmen

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Re: XPFM Fixture Receiver Malfunctioning?
« Reply #3 on: October 17, 2009, 06:17:14 PM »

Thanks for pointing me to the troubleshooting sites. They are CFLs, but the bulbs have been in there for many years without any issues. As for cell phone charger idea, we do charge phones in this room, but it's not that frequent. By that, I mean the problem turning off the lights exists whether the cell phone chargers are plugged in to the wall, or are sitting idle in a drawer, unplugged. So it's hard for me to imagine either of those two ideas being the problem. But I will try to look in to those options more. I would have thought there'd have to be a more abrupt reason (like the receiving going bad or something)....
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Brian H

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Re: XPFM Fixture Receiver Malfunctioning?
« Reply #4 on: October 17, 2009, 06:27:20 PM »

Just reread you original post. It could be a failing XPFM as you said it gets more reliable after cooling off or a hard reset by power cycle.
If the CFL's are old one of them could be starting to fail and make more noise than originally did.
« Last Edit: October 17, 2009, 06:44:45 PM by Brian H »
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JeffVolp

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Re: XPFM Fixture Receiver Malfunctioning?
« Reply #5 on: October 17, 2009, 07:17:49 PM »


Yes, my first choice would be the CFLs.  As components age their values can shift.  They can also vary with temperature.  If the switching converter in one of the CFLs has shifted into the X10 band when warm, it could cause exactly what you describe.

I have a set of 3 CFLs in my lab that can pretty much block any X10 communication on that circuit.

Jeff
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