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Author Topic: X10PRO I need help or an exorcism  (Read 39602 times)

donald mcmow

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Re: X10PRO I need help or an exorcism
« Reply #15 on: May 13, 2005, 10:31:26 AM »

Did you dis-connect the computer completly?
Did you move the CM15A away from the
computer and turn off that breaker? And
still got the same result?
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carmine pacifico

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Re: X10PRO I need help or an exorcism
« Reply #16 on: May 13, 2005, 10:47:04 AM »

JohnN

Try using the TM751 only and one appliance
module, plug them in the same circuit,
close together (outlets in the same room
should be on the same circuit), make sure
that the CM15a and any power bar is
unplugged, use you palm remote and see if
it works. I believe something within your
home is causing problem, dirty power line
will cause glitches, intermittent
operation, but not a total failure.
Before you spend any money on filters and
coupler you need to be sure about the
source of the problem.
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johnn

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Re: X10PRO I need help or an exorcism
« Reply #17 on: May 13, 2005, 01:52:55 PM »

Donald, Yes. I have completely removed the
CM-15a using only the TM751.  But, still no
module will respond to a command from
either AHP or a Palmpad.

Carmine, Thanks for the suggestion.  I
tried plugging (seperately) the CM-15a and
the TM751 into the same outlet as an
appliance module.  Neither one would
trigger the module.  Then I moved both to a
power strip (one that I have used
successfully in the past).  Again the
module did not respond.  Tried another
module and another Palmpad... just in
case.  You have far more experience than I
do with this technology, so I will accept
your hypothesis that the problem is in my
home.

Nothing in my house is new since the
problem started.  I've try to check
electrical equipment to see if there is any
indication of it failing or not operating
properly.  Again, nothing obvious.

In another thread Tigger suggested that I
turn off as many of the breakers at the
same time and see if that cleared the
problem.  I will try that along with his
other suggestion, which is to use a power
line filter to isolate the CM-51a/TM751 and
an appliance module from the power line to
see if the problem really is the power and
not RF.

I can't agree with you more about
coupler/blockers.  They are a bit pricy and
I don't want to solve the wrong problem.

This is a difficult issue to resolve
without the proper instrumentation and I
truly appreciate the thoughts, suggestions
and sanity checking.
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carmine pacifico

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Re: X10PRO I need help or an exorcism
« Reply #18 on: May 13, 2005, 02:44:35 PM »

JohnN

I would suggest that you try your CM15a,
TM751, one appliance module + palm pad in
another location (a friend place maybe)
just to eliminate the possibility that they
are damaged, because these products
(regardless of the make) have delicate
electronic parts inside, power surge can
damage components.
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joe s.

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Re: X10PRO I need help or an exorcism
« Reply #19 on: May 13, 2005, 04:09:20 PM »

JohnN - It's almost as if some device in
your home is actually GENERATING a real B7
PLC command - so (if this has not been
suggested) be sure to remove any device
capable of generating PLC (these would
include TM751, RR501, CM15a, IR543, old
CM11a, camera or alarm systems,
etc) ...essentially anything capable of
generating PLC commands.
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johnn

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Re: X10PRO I need help or an exorcism
« Reply #20 on: May 14, 2005, 08:21:54 PM »

Well folks Iíve had a fun day.  First I
turned off every circuit in my house, at
the breaker panel, except for one.  The CM-
15a still showed cycling B7 sequences and
neither the TM751 nor CM-15a could control
any module.  Then moved setup to another
circuit turned that one on and the other
one off.  Again nothing worked and B7
sequences continued.

Next I connected a power strip to a UPS
still connected to the power line.
Connected the CM-15a, TM751 and an
appliance module on the power strip.  The
CM-15a activity monitor was clean.  No B7
on-off sequences.  More over both the CM-
15a and TM751 controlled the appliance
moduleÖ just like it used to work.

Unless there is something Iíve missed here,
it looks like Iíve got some kind of very
strong signal on the power line.  Donít
know if itís the power company or a
neighbor.  Either wayÖ. Iíve got a problem.

Iíve decided my next step is to install a
blocker at my power panel.  Iíve started
researching them and would really
appreciate any thoughts, suggestions, or
sharing your experiences with any of them
good or bad.   They are a bit pricy and I
want to make sure I get an effective one.

Thanks again to all for your suggestions.
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tony

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Re: X10PRO I need help or an exorcism
« Reply #21 on: May 15, 2005, 01:38:14 PM »

JohnN:  You have four possible variables, to
my understanding as you have described it.
JohnN: If you have a coupler/repeater it may
be picking up noise and issuing well formed
X10 commands (I named it X10 Gibberish)-- I
experienced that and it came in almost
continuous bursts. Replaced the
Coupler/repeater with just a coupler and the
X10 Gibberish went awayÖ but the noise
stayed and intermittently would be
problematic; so some filters were added.  A
misbehaving 220V oven, water heater, or
breaker (may be only one side/phase) may
create noise and if it is on your common
side (short or partial) flipping the
breakers wonít eliminate it, disconnecting
it from the power line will (unplugging).
The highest probability is that the problem
lies within your domain (from house meter
in). You can get a loaner X10 Elk Signal &
Noise test meter - FREE test  At  Automated
Outlet (Your cost is the shipping)
http://www.automatedoutlet.com/product.php?
productid=463&cat=44&page=1  Also make sure
that both phases of 220 at each 220 breaker
and end device are producing the proper
voltage.  Check for shorts to common.  All
that should be done whether you add a PLC
blocker (firewall) or not.

Good Luck.
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johnn

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Re: X10PRO I need help or an exorcism
« Reply #22 on: May 16, 2005, 08:05:08 AM »

Tony,

Thanks.  I had pretty much convinced myself
that the problem was coming in from the
outside and was about to purchase a
blocker/coupler.  Iím holding off until I
work through your suggestions.

First, I donít have a coupler or repeater.
Initially, my lines were so clean that I
was able to control anything anywhere in my
home, independent of phase.  However, I am
now observing X10 Gibberish coming from the
CM-15a.  It appears to be swamped by the
noise signal and is showing, in the
Activity Monitor, a constant B7 on-off
cycle.

Iíd like to better understand your
suggestions about misbehaving 220V oven,
water heater, or breaker.  Is the problem
that with 220v appliances, even though the
breaker to that circuit has been turned
off, there is a possibility that the
appliance could be partially shorting to
neutral or ground and still be creating
noise?  If so, is this situation also
possible with 110v appliances or only 220v
because they span both phases?  Also,
wouldnít there be some other indication of
the problem that would be noticeable by
observing the appliance or breaker?

I hadn't thought to check the phase voltage
at the panel, but, I will.  When you
suggest checking for shorts to common, are
you saying to check for a short between
neutral and ground?

I will request the test equipment from
Automated Outlet today.  Itís really great
that they offer them.

Thanks again for the suggestions and
willingness to help.


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tony

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Re: X10PRO I need help or an exorcism
« Reply #23 on: May 16, 2005, 11:17:50 AM »

JohnN:  The 220 breaker usually is a set of
breakers, one for each phase.  I have seen
it when tripped and reset only one resets
and the other remains open.  The 220
appliances could develop a partial short in
their heating elements they should be
inspectedÖ however flipping the breaker
should isolate them.  Poor contact arcing
can also be a problem.  In your power lines
are frayed or close proximity  (soft short)
could be causing some problems this could be
at the outlet or the appliance/lamp plug or
even in the appliance/lamp (unplugging will
isolate the appliance, but not the outlet).
If you have driven any nails into the wall
or drilled be sure you didnít hit any power
lines.  The common wire (white) is
integrated through out the house so
something shorting or arcing to it even
within a plugged in appliance/lamp could
cause noise.  Lastly if the CM15A  when
isolated on one circuit does it and then
moved to another and still does it I would
also treat it as a suspect.
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Helpful Hints

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Re: X10PRO I need help or an exorcism
« Reply #24 on: May 16, 2005, 11:35:56 AM »

JohnN:  See if you get a voltage reading
between the Bare copper ground and the
common (white)Ö if you do you probably have
a miswire or short somewhere.  The 220V is
achieved via the voltage between the 2
phases (wires) and does not use the common.
The common is used only for 115/110V to
either Phase.
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billy

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Re: X10PRO I need help or an exorcism
« Reply #25 on: May 16, 2005, 11:52:21 AM »

JohnN,

Go back to where you were, all the breakers
turned off, No "B7's" X10 noise.  Then 1 by
1 turn on each breaker, check to see if you
get the "B7's" for each breaker. This will
isolate the problem to a single circuit
(maybe).  Once you find that circuit you can
check that circuit by unplugging things to
find the cause.

Good Luck!
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johnn

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Re: X10PRO I need help or an exorcism
« Reply #26 on: May 16, 2005, 01:55:59 PM »

Folks, thanks for your suggestions.

Billy, I never got to the point where the
noise went away.  So, I canít identify a
particular circuit.  I had all of the
circuits off, but the noise continued.

Helpful Hints, good suggestion.  Iíll check
the voltage between neutral and ground when
I check the actual voltage on each of the
phases to neutral at the panel.

Tony, Iím still struggling with how poor
connections, poor contact arcing or soft
shorting would continue when every circuit
breaker in the house was turned off at the
same time.  I had only one circuit live
then switched that circuit with another
(with all other circuits off).  How could
the noise continue, if there was no power?
The only place that I can conceive of is
the breakers.  They have continuous access
to the power lines and soft shorting
(within the breaker itself) might be
possible, even with the breaker tripped.
What am I missing?

Iím sure the CM-15A  is working fine and
not the problem, because it worked on
a "clean" line created by using a UPS as a
line filter.
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Tigger

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Re: X10PRO I need help or an exorcism
« Reply #27 on: May 16, 2005, 10:50:30 PM »

 
Silly question -

If you attach an appliance module,
with address B7 to the power line,
will it sit there and cycle on-and-off ?

Just curious if it is a legitimate command
coming across the line, or if that is how
the activity monitor is seeing it.

Disconnect the CM15A, and TM751's during
this test. . .


T
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joe s.

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Re: X10PRO I need help or an exorcism
« Reply #28 on: May 16, 2005, 11:06:50 PM »

Good thinking Tigger - that ought to flush
out whether it's "legitimate" or goblins!
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donald mcmow

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Re: X10PRO I need help or an exorcism
« Reply #29 on: May 17, 2005, 03:17:32 AM »

S note: If you had the power company come
out and check the transformer, they probly
only checked for proper voltage and
amperage. They would not have checked for
line noise. This would have required an
osciloscope and most of the trucks don't
normally have one as standard equipment. I
would complain again and tell them exactly
what is happening and what you have done to
try to discover the source of the problem.
If this is an ongoing problem then they
will have to do something about it.

As a side note - those people who have the
foresight to purchase and use SOLAR PANELS
AND DIS-CONNECTED from the GRID are
enjoying cleaner power than what the power
companies will ever be able to supply. AND
they can use there X10 equipment without
any problems. (I wish I had the equipment
to do so).
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