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Author Topic: X10 & Compact Fluorescent  (Read 20057 times)

tom j

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Re: X10 & Compact Fluorescent
« Reply #15 on: September 01, 2011, 01:37:45 PM »

With the abundance of two-wire timers installed throughout the US, I would think that some innovative manufacturer would have come up with a homeowner-compatible solution by now.
They would need to design a bulb that would be able to pass that small current when it was off, yet not interfere with the normal operation of the bulb.
Sounds like a patentable idea.

Hmm think you guys might really be on to something I'm all for it count me in too!

Tom j.
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tom j

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Re: X10 & Compact Fluorescent
« Reply #16 on: September 01, 2011, 05:11:31 PM »

Hum.. that doesn't sound good wondering if x10 has any plans to address this.
The brewing mandate problem has no X10 solution, other than replacing all X10 two wire wall switches with three wire switches, which requires a neutral line in the wall box. And most homes do not have neutral lines in all their wall switch boxes.  This is a serious two pronged problem for X10's future. The majority of all the wall switches they have ever sold are "essentially" incompatible with CFL's and more CFLs generate more noise. There are ways, at the consumer level, which can "coax" a CFL to work with a two wire X10 switch, but involves ways of leaking enough current past the CFL to keep the electronics in the X10 switch active (incandescent nightlights in the circuit, resisters in the circuit, etc.)

This may be why we see X10 branching out in their market products. I think they see the hand writing on the wall.

Hi do you think this might have something to do with the rumor that x10 is shutting down shop  ??? And how about the newer technologies like Z wave and Insteon. Are they also plagued with these compatibility issues. Thanks!!

Tom j.
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Noam

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Re: X10 & Compact Fluorescent
« Reply #17 on: September 01, 2011, 08:22:10 PM »

Any 2-wire timer or remote switch without a battery relies on being able to pass a small amount of power through the fixture in order to work. My dad found this out 30 years ago when his electrician installed a timer in-line with a dimmer in the dining room. Every time my dad dimmed the lights all the way down, it reset the timer. He eventually removed the dimmer, and hasn't had a problem since.

You would encounter the same issue with 2-wire Insteon or Zwave switches. Unless you have a neutral wire in the box, or you have a battery in the switch, there is no other way to keep the device powered without passing it through the load.
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tom j

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Re: X10 & Compact Fluorescent
« Reply #18 on: September 01, 2011, 10:32:14 PM »

OK well it appears this is something they all will have to work on I was thinking it just might be limited to x10 hopefully they will come up with something, can't see them all going out of business.


Tom j.
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Noam

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Re: X10 & Compact Fluorescent
« Reply #19 on: September 02, 2011, 10:43:31 AM »

The crazy part about it is that most homeowners don't understand the problem.
I've spoken to a lot of people who have "regular" timers, and can't figure out why they don't work with CFL bulbs. Most of them end up leaving one incandescent bulb in the fixture, without knowing why (that's what someone else told them to do). They don't understand that that they need something to pass the current through the timer to make it work.

Some of the newer timers (produced in the past 5 years or so - maybe a bit longer) have a lithium battery in them, and that maintains the clock. The switching is done by either a solid-state switch, or a mechanical relay, powered by the battery. That's one way around the problem (it also helps make the timers more "power outage-proof", as they don't need to be reset, and will turn the lights back on if they should be on at the time the power comes back on).
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TVRUK

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Re: X10 & Compact Fluorescent
« Reply #20 on: September 02, 2011, 12:50:03 PM »

HI there,

Here in Europe (UK for me) the Erocrats have declared that incandescent 60W bulbs can no longer be manufactured in Europe. (100w went his way last year). All that has happened is that the manufacture switched to the far east, and prices went up a little. ::)

The solution for me to be "more energy efficient" was to switch to halogen encapsulated bulbs. (they look like standard incandescents, but with a halogen envelope inside).

For example; 42w Halogen = 65w equivalent incandescent. saves about 1/3 on useage and still works great with X10  :)%

All is not lost....  Keep the faith! -:)

regards

Trevor
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Noam

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Re: X10 & Compact Fluorescent
« Reply #21 on: September 02, 2011, 12:56:22 PM »

That's because halogens are really just modified incandescents. They still have a filament that is directly wired to the incoming circuit, so they provide a direct path through which the switch or timer could run its small amount of current.
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tom j

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Re: X10 & Compact Fluorescent
« Reply #22 on: September 13, 2011, 05:34:13 PM »

Anyone know if I can still get the older Decorator Dimmer Switches without the memory function.  ???


Tom j.
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dave w

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Re: X10 & Compact Fluorescent
« Reply #23 on: September 13, 2011, 05:49:16 PM »

Anyone know if I can still get the older Decorator Dimmer Switches without the memory function.  ???
Tom j.
This doesn't answer your question but is an area to investigate:

Open Question

Has X10 Pro's  XPD3 or XPDI3 switches been upgraded to the Resume Dim, and Soft Start? Any regular forum reader purchased one in the last year or two and can enlighten us?
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Brian H

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Re: X10 & Compact Fluorescent
« Reply #24 on: September 13, 2011, 06:05:57 PM »

Just looked at the latest installation guides for the XPD3 and XPDI3.
Both give information on how soft start and resume dim work in the modules.

So I believe both the XPD3 and XPDI3 have been updated to soft start and resume dim.

Back to the basic what do we do.
There is no mandate requiring CFLs; just a level of effency.
I have energy effency approved 72 watt halogen bulbs that are about as bright as a old style 100 watt incandescent bulb.
They work fine with two wire dimmers.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2011, 06:12:25 PM by Brian H »
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dhouston

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Re: X10 & Compact Fluorescent
« Reply #25 on: September 13, 2011, 07:28:29 PM »

There are patents for and even one company developing incandescent bulbs with an IR reflecting coating (transparent to visible light) on the inside of the glass envelope. The IR further heats the filament increasing the efficiency. At least one design could be manufactured on existing incandescent production lines. But, therein lies the problem. It was the light bulb manufacturers who most wanted the new world-wide efficiency standards as there were no profits in $0.25 light bulbs. They financed and co-opted the tree huggers who led the movement but they were always lurking in the background and contributing to politicians re-election funds. The NYT ran an article on this a few months back although over the past few years they mostly ran articles that supported the claims of huge energy savings - purported savings (25%) about 3 times the energy used for residential lighting (9% of residential energy use which is about 30% of total energy use). Industrial, commercial and government buildings have long used mostly tube fluorescents which are far more efficient than CFLs so almost all the savings have to come from residential lighting. Truth is, CFLs might save 2-3% of total energy use if they replace all residential incandescents. I'll try to find the recent NYT link as well as some on the coated bulbs and post them here.
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Brian H

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Re: X10 & Compact Fluorescent
« Reply #26 on: September 13, 2011, 07:36:46 PM »

CFLs also have a lousy power factor. Most are around .5  ::)
Some of the CCFLs I played around with where around .9
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dave w

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Re: X10 & Compact Fluorescent
« Reply #27 on: September 13, 2011, 07:47:35 PM »

The coated bulbs is interesting. But with hotter filament, isn't bulb life shortened?

I am bugged that nanny gov legislates the types of bulbs I can buy...next will be toilet paper.

If nanny gov wants to legislate light bulbs, they should require all traffic lights, nation wide, be switched to LEDs. Typical incandescent traffic lights use bulbs in the neighborhood of 100W, so even a "small" intersection with one center hung traffic light is burning a minimum of 400W continuously. Most intersections are much larger.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2011, 07:58:43 PM by dave w »
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dhouston

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Re: X10 & Compact Fluorescent
« Reply #28 on: September 13, 2011, 10:01:18 PM »

Here's one link. It's about bulbs that use the same principle as CRT. I don't know whether they have actually brought them to market or even what they might cost.

As to the question about the infrared heated filament burning out sooner, one would expect the inventor (David Cunningham, who has numerous lighting patents and is widely respected) thought of that and used a heavier filament. However, I doubt this will make it to market as the companies that once made incandescents prefer the profits they make on CFLs. Here's an article that mentions him as well as an approach developed at Sandia National Labs.

On LED traffic lights, most cities have switched already or are switching as bulbs require replacing.

And here's a link to the NYT article detailing how Philips led the movement to ban incandescents. Before this, most articles on the topic were by environment reporters who were true believers and published the tree hugger propaganda without questioning it.

I forgot to to provide a link to DOE statistics for residential & other energy use. Things have changed. My 9% figure came from about 2007. In 2010 lighting accounts for only 6% of residential energy use so the total energy savings from CFLs are even smaller - 2% if all residential incandescents are replaced by CFLs. In reality, it's probably smaller than a rounding error.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2011, 10:10:05 PM by dhouston »
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HA Dave

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Re: X10 & Compact Fluorescent
« Reply #29 on: September 14, 2011, 01:01:15 AM »

....... the companies that once made incandescents prefer the profits they make on CFLs.

I am not sure the evil greedy corporations idea works well here. No CFL were made in America last time I checked. Whereas the old fashion incandescents were manufactured almost regionally. The switch to CFLs is really just a big government, nanny state law.... just like the low volume flush toilets.
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