Question about Cooper Wiring Devices Motion Sensing Switch- 30 Feet

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I have a switch hooked up to a lamp that occasionally starts blinking, I know that there is a minimum load required, so I installed a 75 watt incandescent bulb. Still blinks occasionally. I have two other installations that work perfectly. I even tried another switch in the same location. What could this problem be ??? If, when its blinking, I turn it off and then back on, works ok.

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  • BoomerP Nov 09, 2010

    When you say "blinking", does it briefly turn off when the lights are on? Or briefly turn on when the lights are off? And how regularly (once per second, once per minute?)

  • calyong Nov 09, 2010

    once a second....goes from dark to dim then back to dark again...I would say "briefly turn on", but not full brightness

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What gives me pause on this is the fact that the problem stays with the application and that your other applications work OK.

What ths issue sounds like is a neutral connection issue.. Many of the Cooper sensor/switch products require a neutral connection to avoid the issue you're describing. If there was no neutral connection, the sensor would draw power, and then dump it out through the light fixture - causing the lamps to flash (like you're seeing). But if you add a neutral connection to the device, the sensor can dump it out through the neutral and not excite the light bulbs.

So why does it work in the other installations and not here? Well, one possibility is that maybe those other installations have a LOT of load (multiple fixtures) so that spike of current isn't enough to make them blink. The other possibility is that maybe there isn't a neutral connection in the box, or maybe the neutral connection was disconnected from the box. I struggle with both these answers especially since you were able to do it successfully in two other locations, but the problem mode you discuss SCREAMS neutral issue.

If you can't solve it by those means, I recommended replacing it with the Lutron equivalent, the MS-OP600M-WH (dimmer) or MS-OPS6M-DV-WH (switch). Neither of these device leak a lot of current and work without requiring a neutral connection.

Posted on Nov 09, 2010

Testimonial: "thank you very much for your answer. I'm ashamed to tell you I'm an electronic engineer and didn't think of that solution. Thanks again ! Cal"

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You run a fused wire from the battery or power distribution block to the relay that should be mounted within 6 inches of the closest h/l bulb. Then from the relay to the head light bulb/s. The front and rear running lamps can remain as factory as they are low amperage draw and original light switch will work because you now no longer run power to the h/lamps through the switch.

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160 590


Yes

The Asus P5GC-MX/1333 motherboard, uses an Intel 945GC motherboard chipset,

http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/P5GCMX1333/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_intel_chipsets#Core_2_chipsets

When installing in the PCI Express x16 slot on the motherboard, (Black. Gently lift up on Locking Arm to install card. Looks like you press down), there looks to be enough room.

There are Radial Aluminum Electrolytic Capacitors that stick up, on one side; and one of the white PCI slots on the other side.

Nvidia GeForce GTX 560 is a wide graphics card,

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=7758758&CatId=3669

Just one manufacturer. Size varies a little from manufacturer to manufacturer.

Minimum power requirement is 450 Watts.

Now bear in mind that this is for a complete computer system.
NOT, what just the graphics card requires for power.

Since there is no additional power cable to be connected, to the graphics card, the graphics card ONLY uses UP TO 75 Watts.

This is known because a PCI-Express x16 slot, will deliver UP TO 75 Watts.

If a graphics card requires more power, then a 6-pin PCI Express power cable is used. It will deliver an additional 75 Watts, bring the available power for the graphics card UP TO 150 Watts.

http://www.playtool.com/pages/psuconnectors/connectors.html#pciexpress

Graphics card requires more power than that?
Then an 8-pin PCI Express power cable is used. This power cable can deliver UP TO 150 Watts.
With PCI Express x16 slot, you are now looking at 225 available Watts,

http://www.playtool.com/pages/psuconnectors/connectors.html#pciexpress8

[NOT to be confused with the 8-pin EPS +12 Volt power cable. This power cable is used for the MOTHERBOARD, NOT a graphics card,

http://www.playtool.com/pages/psuconnectors/connectors.html#eps8
]

The connector on the Top of the graphics card, is for SLI.
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scalable_Link_Interface

Regards,
joecoolvette

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1 Answer

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(6-pin PCI Express power cable provides up to an additional 75 Watts,

http://www.playtool.com/pages/psuconnectors/connectors.html#pciexpress

8-pin PCI Express power cable provides up to an additional 150 Watts,

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Do NOT mix the 8-pin EPS + 12 Volt graphics card power cable, up with an 8-pin EPS +12 Volt power cable.
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An advancement of the 4-pin ATX +12 Volt power cable,

http://www.playtool.com/pages/psuconnectors/connectors.html#eps8

The 350 Watt Minimum power requirement you saw stated, is from the manufacturer, and deems a complete computer system.
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Graphics card drivers, and user interface software installed, (Nvidia Control Panel. Suggest do not use Asus Tweak), -> F-I-R-S-T.

Then physically install the graphics card, FOLLOWING Anti-Static Precautions.

Monitor plugged into graphics card, computer turned on, you got nuthin', RMA the graphics card. It's no good.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814121643

Scroll down a little. Click on -> Feedback.
[Details / Feedback ]

For additional questions please post in a Comment.
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Anyway, you are attempting to dim a total of 800 watts of light. A standard dimmer switch will not handle this much of a load as they are rated for 600 watts. A 1000 dimmer is the next size up and would be the minimum rating to be used. This means the dimmer would be operating at 80% of capacity and the switch may become warm - but all within acceptable limits.

A dimmer switch rated at 1200 watts or even 1500 watts may be a better choice, as the 800 watt load would present a load that would only be 66% and 53% (respectively) of rated capacity, and would likely run cooler and last a lot longer.

The down side to these higher wattage rated switches is their cost. It is not unusual for the price to double for a 600w vs a 1000w dimmer.

Sometimes, a 1000w dimmer is not sufficient to control a 600w load. This happens when 2 or more dimmer switches are installed in a single location under one wall plate. It is a fairly common arrangement for electricians to install 2, 3 or more "ganged boxes" so that there aren't 2, 3 or more individual switches clustered around a doorway. Even though a two ganged box has twice the area of a one gang box, the issue is about heat dissipation. A box will contain the heat. So the heat is given up from the front of the switch. The metal fins provide more area for cooling. When two or more dimmers are located in a multiple-ganged box, there is too much heat for the space. Two 600 watt dimmers would need to be derated to about 450 watts each (instructions for derating are included with the switch - each manufacturer has their own formulas), and if three 600 watt dimmers were in a single location, they might need to be derated to 300 watts each. So, simply moving to a 1000 watt or 1200 watt dimmer may not get you to the 600 watt level if there are several dimmers that require derating to 50%. Installing dimmers in boxes with standard "toggle" type (non-dimming) switches require no derating as toggle switches do not produce appreciable heat.

Make sure that the lighting load is a type designed for dimming. The popular CFL (compact fluorescent lamps) are not designed for dimming, unless the package specifically states otherwise. Lights that have a filiment but no transformer, ballast, starter, etc. are the only ones suitable for use with a dimmer (again - unless the package / fixture states otherwise). The dimmable types are typically "standard" incandescent, quartz, halogen and tungsten types.

Furthermore, a dimmer switch is not suitable for use as a fan speed control either. There are special switches to provide speed control of fan motors. Use of a dimmer on a motor load is a fire hazard.

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When i lower the lights, they start flickering


The two most usual reasons are:
- The minimum load requirement hasn't been met (should be at least 40-Watts of lighting load)
- The lamp-type isn't compabitable (the product is rated for incandescent / line-voltage halogen - not CFLs or LEDs).

Regardless, I would recommend calling Lutron's tech support at 1-800-523-9466. They're available 24/7 and can help you investigate further.

Dec 02, 2010 | Lutron S603P Skylark Incandescent 120V...

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Fast blinking led indicator on dimmer switch. lights won't turn on. connected to chandelier. changed out all bulbs and now bulbs and indicator blink very fast.


Which product is this (the one pictured doesn't have an LED indicator on it)?

I would call their tech support number 1-800-523-9466 to diagnose (available 24/7).


I suggest this because I can think of a few possibilities (is it a dimmable load or a non-dim CFL - is it an LED load that might not meet the minimum load requirement)? And I think the answer will differ based on what product you're using - do you have a model number of what product it is?

There's more answers that are needed to diagnose, so I would call tech support.

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1 Answer

Light switch feels hot


If the switch is rated at 600 watts and you have six 100 watt lamps connected to the switch, you are at the capacity of the switch and heating would be expected. It's general practice to not place loads on a device that will exceed 80% of the device's ratings, in this case 480 watts.

Some heating in a dimmer switch is not unusual, but if it's hot, it should be replaced with a device with a higher rating or the loads should be divided. You could also lower the wattage of the lamps (to around 75 watt each) unless you would lose too much light.

If the sockets in the fixtures can be lowered closer to the surface of the fixture, you can probably reduce the wattage since more light will exit the fixture. You will also save a few bucks with less wattage. Lastly, check the fixtures themselves and see if they are rated for the wattage of the lamps you have in them.

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