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Author Topic: SOLUTION! - X10 switch to control 7 fluorescent fixtures converted to LED tubes  (Read 6145 times)

alexcomp

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 -:)
The typical X10 WS467 Wall Switch would not work.  I happened to have an AM466 3pin appliance module and it works!  It's going to require a little custom wiring that I haven't totally implemented yet but I had a 4' led shop light turning on and off perfectly with remotes to RF751 to AM466 to shop light this morning.  THIS DIDN'T WORK WITH THE NEW FIXTURES BUT I CAME UP WITH AN ALTERNATIVE SOLUTION THAT WORKS AND IS LESS EXPENSIVE - AN INEXPENSIVE LAMP MODULE WORKS FINE AND i'VE GOT PLENTY OF THOSE.  PREPARING A YOUTUBE VIDEO THAT I'LL LINK TO WHEN IT'S DONE.

  I'll need to rewire the box with the existing wall switch (fortunately it has neutral) with a duplex outlet and a grounded plug that will lead to the light fixtures.  I prepared a schematic of this which is attached..  Sorry can't figure out how to insert an image.  Could email if anyone wants or repost the image if someone tells me how.

 I just replaced 14, Fluorescent tubes with LED tubes.  The quality and brightness is amazing and there is the additional benefit of dramatic decrease in electrical costs perhaps two thirds less.  These are standard, single tube over counter and undercounter fixtures.  They are laid out in two  banks controlled by two switches on either side of the kitchen.

I was aware that X 10 does not play nicely with fluorescent but had high hopes that my existing stock of X 10 modules might be able to work with these LED tubes.  Sadly, my WS 467 switches will turn the lights on and off but while on, will flicker and even while off will give faint flickers.  After pulling out all of the ballasts the electrical wiring to the fixtures is extremely simple going from each fixture to the next fixture while dropping a single power wire to one tombstone and a single common to the other tombstone.  Of course, there are things going on inside The individual tubes with their drivers and electronics I don't pretend to understand that.

on the X 10 website, they make mention of the WS 13 a relay switch and suggest that it might do better with LED lighting.  Any thoughts on that?

my goal is simple there are two entries to my kitchen and I wish to turn on both banks of LED tube lighting simultaneously from either entry.  Help would be appreciated!

Been a while since I've worked with X10 so quick dumb question.  Will a palm pad remote control a module like the ws467 directly or must there be a transceiver to pick up the radio signal and put it on the home wiring network?
« Last Edit: November 03, 2015, 10:41:39 PM by alexcomp »
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Brian H

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Re: X10 switch to control 7 fluorescent fixtures converted to LED tubes
« Reply #1 on: October 31, 2015, 10:34:05 AM »

I have some of those LED 4' replacements and like them.

The WS13A or XPS3-IW [now updated to a XPS4] are relay types and should work better. As the WS467 steals power through the loads and is not for other type loads.
http://www.authinx.com/x10/manuals/WS13A.pdf

One point. Since the WS13A or XPS4 do not steal power through the loads. They need a neutral power connection in the switch box. Along with the Line and Load connections. So you will need a Neutral power connection in the switch box.

Are the original mechanical switches in a three way setup now? You can't use two WS13A or XPS4 switches to control the same loads. You can use one and a companion switch to trigger them. Through a traveler wire in a three way setup.
http://www.authinx.com/manuals/X10/WS14A.pdf

Yes you need a transceiver to take the X10 RF commands and send them on the power lines.
« Last Edit: October 31, 2015, 10:38:27 AM by Brian H »
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dhouston

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Re: X10 switch to control 7 fluorescent fixtures converted to LED tubes
« Reply #2 on: October 31, 2015, 12:08:11 PM »

The quality and brightness is amazing and there is the additional benefit of dramatic decrease in electrical costs perhaps two thirds less.

Is this a measured decrease in electrical costs? Tube fluorescents have long been miserly users of electricity when compared to incandescents but I've been unable to find an analysis of T8 LEDs vs. T8 fluorescents that wasn't from manufacturers with a vested interest. Cree claims a 30% increase in efficiency (for a dimmable LED) with a 3 year payback but it's unclear whether that includes the labor costs and it certainly doesn't include the cost of replacing switches, removing ballasts, etc.

I'm certainly willing to be convinced. While I only have two fluorescent fixtures in my apartment, they are 50+ years old and finding ballasts, etc. is becoming an issue for the landlord.  Are they available in other sizes?

UPDATE: Given Amazon's prices for 18" F15T8 LED bulbs used for my bathroom medicine cabinet, the payback is closer to 3 centuries.  rofl
« Last Edit: October 31, 2015, 12:51:04 PM by dhouston »
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alexcomp

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Re: X10 switch to control 7 fluorescent fixtures converted to LED tubes
« Reply #3 on: October 31, 2015, 06:14:21 PM »

I didn't see any neutral in the switchboxes.  That's a pain.  I'd have to drop a neutral through the wire although an alternative might be to "through wire the hot wire in the box, then put the X10 switch at the beginning of the circuit, prior to the first fixture.  (assuming all 7 fixtures are wired serially and not two separate strands wired serially).

As far as electrical consumption, the four foot tubes I replaced are rated at 40w consumption and they are replaced by led tubes rated 13w.  That's where my 2/3 reduction comes from.  I'm unable to quantify how much current the replaced ballasts were using but it has to be something I'd think.

There are a profusion of led replacement tubes in every gradation that fluorescents came in.  2' 3' 4' 6' 8' horseshoe configurations.  They will supposedly last for many years.  Here's a link to the 3 footers I bought on Amazon.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B014EYMXZW?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00
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dhouston

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Re: X10 switch to control 7 fluorescent fixtures converted to LED tubes
« Reply #4 on: November 01, 2015, 05:42:15 AM »

Prices for tube LEDs are all over the map. Here's the 18" LED I found.
http://www.amazon.com/Fulight-Easy-Installing%C2%A4-Rotatable-Equivalent-Double-End/dp/B0114FSQGY/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1446372589&sr=8-7&keywords=f18t8+led+bulb

The devil, of course, is in the details many of which are lacking in the various descriptions.

Yours lists 1680 lumens. Most standard 3' fluorescents will be more than twice that. The difference being that standard tubes emit through 360 (needing a reflector behind the bulb) while LEDs emit through a reduced angle (~120) necessitating a rotatable tube for focusing.

My 18" has a 3 year warranty while your 3' has 5 years. I suspect the warranty is a more accurate estimate of life expectancy than the 21,000 hour figure in your 3' bulb's description although I am reminded that the CFLs that were to save the world tended fo fail after only a few months use.

Do these incorporate an internal DC power supply? Details would be helpful. A noisy supply might require bulb replacement.

If one needs to rewire to gain a neutral and/or switches need replacement, conversion costs start to escalate.

I hope these live up to your expectations but, in general, I remain skeptical.
« Last Edit: November 01, 2015, 05:48:05 AM by dhouston »
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alexcomp

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Re: X10 switch to control 7 fluorescent fixtures converted to LED tubes
« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2015, 09:43:30 AM »

I'm much better off than I was.  Kitchen amazingly bright comparatively.  My 3' and 4' fluorescent were 30w and 40w consumption and the replacements are 14w and 18w saving 26w and 22w respectively.  With 8 3' and 6 4' my total power consumption looks to be down from 480w to 220w with all lights on.  The ballasts draw something also but unsure how much.

I really need to control all lights from two entry points if anyone has ideas.

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alexcomp

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Re: X10 switch to control 7 fluorescent fixtures converted to LED tubes
« Reply #6 on: November 02, 2015, 09:53:44 AM »

Prices for tube LEDs are all over the map. Here's the 18" LED I found.
http://www.amazon.com/Fulight-Easy-Installing%C2%A4-Rotatable-Equivalent-Double-End/dp/B0114FSQGY/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1446372589&sr=8-7&keywords=f18t8+led+bulb


Yours lists 1680 lumens. Most standard 3' fluorescents will be more than twice that. The difference being that standard tubes emit through 360 (needing a reflector behind the bulb) while LEDs emit through a reduced angle (~120) necessitating a rotatable tube for focusing.


Check your assumptions.  I think you're confusing Kelvin with lumens.  There is no quote of lumens on your 18 inch fixture above.  I looked - it does say 7 watt/15watt equivalence and 3000 lumens if I recall.  Lumens is a measure of color temperature.
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dhouston

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Re: X10 switch to control 7 fluorescent fixtures converted to LED tubes
« Reply #7 on: November 02, 2015, 11:52:30 AM »

I think you're confusing Kelvin with lumens.
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kelvin
 
There is no quote of lumens on your 18 inch fixture above.
I wrote nothing about that. I did, however, refer to standard fluorescents.
http://www.lrc.rpi.edu/programs/NLPIP/lightingAnswers/t8/02-t8-light-output.asp

Lumens is a measure of color temperature.
http://www.integral-led.com/education/what-are-lumens

One final note: Perceived brightness varies with the color temperature of a bulb.
http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=cfls.pr_cfls_lumens

If you are happy with the result, that's what matters. Others might find lumens per watt of interest.
« Last Edit: November 02, 2015, 11:59:46 AM by dhouston »
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alexcomp

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Re: X10 switch to control 7 fluorescent fixtures converted to LED tubes
« Reply #8 on: November 02, 2015, 01:00:41 PM »


Prices for tube LEDs are all over the map. Here's the 18" LED I found.
http://www.amazon.com/Fulight-Easy-Installing%C2%A4-Rotatable-Equivalent-Double-End/dp/B0114FSQGY/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1446372589&sr=8-7&keywords=f18t8+led+bulb


Yours lists 1680 lumens. Most standard 3' fluorescents will be more than twice that. The difference being that standard tubes emit through 360 (needing a reflector behind the bulb) while LEDs emit through a reduced angle (~120) necessitating a rotatable tube for focusing.


I think I typoed when I said Lumens = color temp - meant to say Kelvin = color temp.

A quote from the 4' Hyperikon tubes I bought "stunning 110 lumens per watt - INDUSTRY LEADING!".  This means that my 3' at 14 watts is as it should be with quoted 1620 lumens.  Find me some 3' tubes that advertise 3000 lumens or more, or 4' advertising upwards of 4000 lumens and I'll be all over them as I need to buy more.  Don't think you can do it as I've looked.  Remember - industry leading at 110 lumens per watt.
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dhouston

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While the above pictures are (probably) not of the LEDs you bought, all fluorescent-replacement tube LEDs will likely have two such switch mode power supplies (one at each end). Similar, inexpensive power supplies are notoriously prone to early failure and spewing high frequency noise onto the powerline. Just one more reason to be skeptical.

Your 4' LED is 18W. At 110 lumens/watt, that's 1980 lumens. The 40W standard fluorescent it replaced probably was rated at 90-100 lumens per watt for 3600-4000 lumens. http://www.lrc.rpi.edu/programs/NLPIP/lightingAnswers/t8/04-t8-efficacy.asp

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Brian H

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I have seen some that are designed to be used with the ballast still wired in.
I have also seen some of them from Cree recalled due to the high voltage from the ballasts catching the LED Tube on fire.  :o

The ones I have you remove the ballasts and wire the Line and Neutral to one end and the other end no connections. Those can't be used with the shunt tombstones as both pins on each end are jumped.
« Last Edit: November 03, 2015, 06:07:04 PM by Brian H »
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alexcomp

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Your 4' LED is 18W. At 110 lumens/watt, that's 1980 lumens. The 40W standard fluorescent it replaced probably was rated at 90-100 lumens per watt for 3600-4000 lumens. http://www.lrc.rpi.edu/programs/NLPIP/lightingAnswers/t8/04-t8-efficacy.asp



Amazon 4' Sylvania rated 2200 lumens for a 40 watter.  I think your info is suspect.  The real answer is that my perceived brightness is now much better.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00IISC2W0?keywords=40%20watt%20fluorescent%20bulbs&qid=1446607716&ref_=sr_1_1&sr=8-1
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alexcomp

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I have seen some that are designed to be used with the ballast still wired in.
I have also seen some of them from Cree recalled due to the high voltage from the ballasts catching the LED Tube on fire.  :o

The ones I have you remove the ballasts and wire the Line and Neutral to one end and the other end no connections. Those can't be used with the shunt tombstones as both pins on each end are jumped.

Mine needed the ballasts removed (I have 14 for sale!).  They were also double ended so all that was necessary was to hot wire one end and neutral the other.  It also needed just the one wire to only one side of the tombstone as the tubes are internally shunted.
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dhouston

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Amazon 4' Sylvania rated 2200 lumens for a 40 watter.  I think your info is suspect.  The real answer is that my perceived brightness is now much better.
2200/40=55 lumens/watt which is the lowest figure, by far, that I've seen.

The Lighting Research Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, the source of my info, has long had an outstanding reputation for the quality of its research. I'm more inclined to believe them than the claims of self-promoting manufacturers.
http://www.lrc.rpi.edu/

As I've said repeatedly, your satisfaction is important. Others might want to see the total picture.
« Last Edit: November 04, 2015, 06:19:08 AM by dhouston »
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dhouston

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I have seen some that are designed to be used with the ballast still wired in.
I have also seen some of them from Cree recalled due to the high voltage from the ballasts catching the LED Tube on fire.  :o

The ones I have you remove the ballasts and wire the Line and Neutral to one end and the other end no connections. Those can't be used with the shunt tombstones as both pins on each end are jumped.

I saw some like those you cite, some powered at both ends, as well as some that require an external DC power supply. All of these variations make it important that folks research things before implementing fluorescent tube replacements. The 18" one I cited has a wiring diagram on the Amazon page - just click on the image at the left side of the page.
http://www.amazon.com/Fulight-Easy-Installing%C2%A4-Rotatable-Equivalent-Double-End/dp/B0114FSQGY/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1446372589&sr=8-7&keywords=f18t8+led+bulb

There are even replacement non-shunted tombstones available.
http://www.amazon.com/LEDwholesalers-Non-Shunted-tombstone-fluorescent-replacements/dp/B00DZIGJX6/ref=sr_1_2?s=hi&ie=UTF8&qid=1446635333&sr=1-2&keywords=fluorescent+tombstone

Some are even dimmable but most are not particularly X10-friendly.
« Last Edit: November 04, 2015, 06:15:38 AM by dhouston »
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