Question about Intermatic Inc. EJ500C Digital Wall Switch Timer - Self-Adjusting Feature

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Intermatic EJ500 gets VERY HOT on metal portion around timer

I have two EJ500C wall timers mounted side by side. They control sockets outdoors that are running Christmas lights. After installing the wall timers, but before installing the plastic face plate, I noticed the metal mounting brackets on the timers getting very hot when the lights are on. So hot that it is not possible to touch metal for more than 1 second. This seems odd. Is this normal? What causes it? Is it too much load for the timers? A guy in the electical department of Home Depot mentioned that it could be a grounding issue.

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  • Anonymous Dec 16, 2008

    I have the same issue, any ideas

  • retlaw54 Dec 22, 2008

    I also have the same problem, but the problem did not occur until I used the timer to control Christmas lights. I removed several sets of lights from the circuit and the temperature decreased but did not go away. Normally, the timer controls low voltage outdoor lighting and a fountain pump. I never noticed the temperature problem before.

    The temperature got hot enough that the danger of fire was very real.
    There is nothing that I could find on Intermatic web site or in their troubleshooting materials that came with the timer.

    Query: Would it make a difference if the house wires to the timer were reversed. The instructions with the timer do not specify which wire should go where.

  • DDD8 Dec 28, 2008

    Replaced old intermatic timer with the ej500. Simptoms are the same - after a couple of minutes of running christmas lights (outdoor), the unit becomes very hot to the touch.



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Sounds like you have too much load. The device is using its heatsinks like they were designed for. To dissipate heat.

Posted on Jan 12, 2009

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One timer supports 500 Watts maximum.

Each 25 light strand of c7 lights consumes 75 Watts; therefore the maximum number of c7 lights is roughly six 25 light strands per timer.

Each 50 light strand of minilights consumes about 25 Watts; therefore the maximum number of minilights per timer is about 1000 lights or twenty strands of 50 lights per timer.

Posted on Apr 13, 2009


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I can't download the instruction manual from Intermatic's website. I have a EJ500C timer and want to know why they caution against using it with CFL's and how to program it to shut off...

EJ500 7-day or astronomic timer is incandescent light bulb timer.
Different timers have different Load ratings.
Intermatic ST01C timer can control CFLs.
Aube timers have same wiring capability as Intermatic, and offer CLF control, but you have to choose either astronomic timer, or 7-day timer.
Open following links for manual and timer information.

Jul 16, 2011 | Intermatic Inc. EJ500C Digital Wall Switch...

1 Answer

How do you change the battery on an Intermatic EJ500C timer?

Following link has photo of the battery carriage

Open door on EJ500.
Below button is battery compartment.
Use small tool to open compartment.

Befor pulling out batteries, notice direction that batteries sit.
Look at markings on battery.
Replace with same battery.

Jan 12, 2011 | Intermatic Inc. EJ500C Digital Wall Switch...

1 Answer

Flickering bulbs

You posted under EJ500 Intermatic battery-operated timer.
If you have different timer, add a comment.
I have tested EJ500 timer.

A) If this is new single-pole installation and lights click on-off when timer turned on, then you connected red wire where blue wire should be connected.

Manual says for single pole switch:
Timer-black-wire to Hot; Timer-blue-wire to Load (lights)
Here's how to wire timer correctly:
1) Timer-green-wire connects to bare ground wire.
2) Switch has 2 wires. Take switch wires and connect them to timer-black-wire and timer-blue-wire. Choose either one for now.
3) Put wire nut on red wire.
4) Turn on electricity, and push ON-OFF button. If lights come on, timer is wired correctly. If lights do not come on, then reverse timer-blue and timer-black wires.

B) If you are replacing 3-way switch, view wiring diagrams shown on link below, and then add a comment saying exact color of wires. To wire this timer for 3-way can require additional wire between switches. This is because EJ500 blue wire must always go to Load (light, fan, motor)

C) If this is older timer that stopped working, check your bulbs. Then check timer battery. Manual says if timer stops working and bulbs are good, and battery good, then reset timer and reprogram. How to reset timer. Press reset button while holding down Next/ON-OFF button.
EJ500 manual has long list of programming instructions: Add a comment if you forgot parts of programming.
EJ500 manual

Nov 28, 2010 | Intermatic Inc. EJ500C Digital Wall Switch...

1 Answer

Light turns off in the morning, but does not automatically turn on in the evening

Battery-operated Intermatic timers can develop problems.

1) Battery may need to be replaced.

2) Troubleshoot guide on manual says to 'reset and reprogram' timer if problems occur.

3) Timer comes with 1 year warranty and can just go bad.

Nov 21, 2010 | Intermatic Inc. EJ500C Digital Wall Switch...

1 Answer

Can I use the Intermatic EJ500CH timer in an outdoor box?

No as long as the box is well insulated.
The operating temperture must not fall below - 5

May 24, 2009 | Intermatic Inc. EJ500C Digital Wall Switch...

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