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Author Topic: Automating Air Conditioner On/Off  (Read 5183 times)

midiman

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Automating Air Conditioner On/Off
« on: May 26, 2016, 08:47:57 PM »

Hi all, let me just say that I am new to this and am willing to experiment to see if this will work. I have a 220V 15A HD243 as it is the only plug compatible with my air conditioner. I just received it today and tested its functionality with the air on and all seems well. Now my next step is to see what I can purchase to be able to send ON/OFF commands to the HD243 to turn it on and off through a computer ideally. I have looked at powerline and RF (RF: which I dont think is compatible) modules and found some with serial and usb, both of which I can use, just not sure what will be compatible with the HD243. Im looking for some direction in what to buy that would be able to talk with the HD243 through a computer. I know this may not be clearly explained, I'm hoping to learn some more and see if this setup could work.

Thanks
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Brian H

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Re: Automating Air Conditioner On/Off
« Reply #1 on: May 27, 2016, 06:38:54 AM »

Depends on how much control you want to have and what you may want to add at a later date.

A simple RF remote sending to a X10 TM751 or RR501 Transceiver to change the RF commands to the power line commands. That can control the HD243. Would give you basic Key fob control.

An AC powered Keypad in a wall mount or table top case could also be used. To send power line commands to the HD243.
https://www.x10.com/x10-pro/in-wall-keypads.html

If you want to have computer control and also receive RF commands form a key fob. The X10 CM15A would work.
The Active Home Pro Software is available using a program called Life jacket to allow it to be installed. Because the old X10 servers are gone.
https://www.x10.com/x10-home-automation/interfaces/cm15a-module.html

A simpler X10 serial controlled CM11A and Active Home software is still available from a third party.
It does not do any RF processing like the CM15A can. So it is strictly power line unless you added a RF Key Fob and Tranceiver.
http://www.thex10shop.com/product/x10-genuine-cm11a-activehome-serial-computer-interface
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midiman

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Re: Automating Air Conditioner On/Off
« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2016, 12:46:49 AM »

Thanks for the info, seems to be scattered around the internet and hard to follow, really appreciate some direction. I went the route of the CM15A and used my laptop to test at first. My end goal is to have my Linux server be able to control things, but I know Windows is best supported, so I have been using Windows 7 to test these devices. So far, no luck getting the CM15A to talk with to the HD243 through Active Home software. After installing the USB drivers for x10, I went into the options and told it CM15A and it says connected and I select HD243 from the list of icons and try to send all off or anything else and I receive no indication of communication. I've been reading up on it and I haven't found anything to indicate this setup shouldn't work. Any troubleshooting or ideas is appreciated, I have some suspicion I am missing some pieces of this puzzle, but not too sure.  I will link to a diagram of my current setup.

http://korworks.com/x10_setup.jpg

Thanks for all the help. This is a fun experiment.
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Brian H

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Re: Automating Air Conditioner On/Off
« Reply #3 on: June 02, 2016, 06:16:21 AM »

You may have power line signal problems.
Like noise makers, signal suckers or phase coupling.
Jeff at JV Digital Engineering has a great set of troubleshooting tutorials.
http://jvde.us/x10_troubleshooting.htm

One thing is the CM15A should not be on the same circuit as the computing equipment, UPS AC Inputs or filtered surge suppressors to name a few.
With out a X10 signal type filter to isolate the equipment from the CM15A directly on the AC feed.

The HD243 is a unique X10 module running on both power lines for 220 volt operation. Most are 120 volts. So in this case the X10 power line signal has to be on both incoming lines. So I would say phase coupling wound have to get the power line command to both power lines feeding the HD243.

I am sure others will chime in and have more thoughts and recommendations.

There are Linux based X10 programs but the CM15A is not fully implemented in some of them. Like storing timers in it and then turning off the computer. To run standalone.
You may want to look here as a start.
http://www.linuxha.com/index.html
http://www.heyu.org/
« Last Edit: June 02, 2016, 07:47:46 AM by Brian H »
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JeffVolp

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Re: Automating Air Conditioner On/Off
« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2016, 08:59:41 AM »

The HD243 is a unique X10 module running on both power lines for 220 volt operation. Most are 120 volts. So in this case the X10 power line signal has to be on both incoming lines. So I would say phase coupling wound have to get the power line command to both power lines feeding the HD243.

Actually, an imbalanced signal is better.  Since the 240V module straddles both lines, it receives the differential signal across both lines.  The original metal-cased X10 and Leviton phase couplers that I tested inverted the signal on the opposite phase when installed per the instructions, so that delivered a very strong signal to a 240V module.  The more recent plastic-cased X10 coupler, and those from SmartHome and the XTB-IIR, drive the same signal onto both phases.  So that results in a very weak signal level to a 240V module.

A few of our customers have had trouble with 240V X10 modules, and I recommended that they install a .1uF 250VAC line-rated capacitor on one leg to neutral at the module.  That severely attenuates the signal on that phase there, and the module receives almost the normal X10 signal level from the other phase.

This and the effect from some 240V appliances is described better in my troubleshooting guide on phase coupling.

Jeff
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X-10 automation since the BSR days
 

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