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Author Topic: Questions to ask an electrician or home automation  (Read 443 times)

Flicker

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Questions to ask an electrician or home automation
« on: January 29, 2021, 08:27:27 PM »

Light Switches/x-10 Recommendations are needed for the best service provider to repair, replace or revert to standard wall switches. Our home has X 10 wall switches for the overhead lights. All of the teleworking and homeschooling resulted in some switches no longer cutting on that light. We probably did 5 years of on and off during the lockdown. The switches and modules that I have are no longer being made and we need to do something. There are a host of technologies ( z wave, Insteon, newer x10). And today we came home and a couple of lights were already on. Looking for someone who can advise us on the best route to take. We know that a regular electrician won’t be able to guide us.  We had an electrical outlet replaced and when we showed our X 10 ceiling/wall switches-the person looked like a deer in the headlights. :-). So any recommendations of individuals who can fix, repair, create a hybrid system, or go back to old fashion switches would be appreciated. And what questions should we ask when we make the call to make sure the person has the right experience? Any help would be appreciated. 
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Brian H

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Re: Questions to ask an electrician or home automation
« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2021, 06:40:00 AM »

Part numbers of some of the problem devices. Would help in giving you a better answer.
Most X10 devices are still being made or their is a equivalent. As you have seen a few may not be.
If by they are another brands X10 equivalent. Many can be replaced with an X10 module. Depending on the module you want to replace.
Almost all of the modern automated switches. Require a Neutral Power Connection. So that would play into this.

If you want to go back to standard switches and outlets. An electrician should have no problems.
Like a 2 wire X10 dimmer. Just connect the two of the houses wires to the connection screws on it.
Three ways may need the travelers between the two modules reused back to standard wiring.
I believe the X10 Outlets had wire leads. On an standard outlet. You would connect the houses Line to the Line terminal and the Neutral to the Neutral terminal of a standard outlet.
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Flicker

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Re: Questions to ask an electrician or home automation
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2021, 09:42:13 AM »

Good morning and thank you so much. The house is 30 years old and I think the system was put in when the house was built. We have lived here 17 years and never had any issues except for one light coming on by itself for a while and we figured out it happen after we bought our kid a new Christmas toy.
We will do a little bit more research. 
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brobin

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Re: Questions to ask an electrician or home automation
« Reply #3 on: January 30, 2021, 11:04:17 AM »

The X10 stuff is very robust but things like "wall wart" power supplies can cause problems.  While X10 probably wouldn't be your first choice for a new installation today, since you have it already it's worth taking a little time to get up to speed on how it works and things to watch out for.  In addition to the wealth of knowledge on this forum have a look at the articles at http://jvde.us/x10_troubleshooting.htm where an hour of reading will get you up to speed quickly.
 
Many of us here, myself included, have been using X10 since the 80's and are happy to answer questions and help you get your system healthy again. You can even bring your system into the 21st century with Alexa or Google Home control if you like.
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