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switch timer

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  • #465273
    TopNotch
    Pro
    elmwood park, NJ

    Anyone have experience with these hard wired switch timers? Customer had one set up for the front exterior light but complained it never worked correct.
    He didnt want digital just a simple push button type to set the time range.

    He sent me a link to HD for one. It was the only type available called “defiant” I installed it and now he says it doesnt keep time or activate on schedule.
    I did wire it hot and heard doing that could mess up the timer when it sparks or surges. No matter what Im going to kill the breaker next time to be safe. It seemed like a valid possibility.

    Anyone else know about these?

    Working Pro since 1993

    Tom M

    #465278

    Anyone have experience with these hard wired switch timers? Customer had one set up for the front exterior light but complained it never worked correct.
    He didnt want digital just a simple push button type to set the time range.

    He sent me a link to HD for one. It was the only type available called “defiant” I installed it and now he says it doesnt keep time or activate on schedule.
    I did wire it hot and heard doing that could mess up the timer when it sparks or surges. No matter what Im going to kill the breaker next time to be safe. It seemed like a valid possibility.

    Anyone else know about these?

    Some – got a model number or a pic?

    I find the most user friendly ones are sold for Christmas lighting, and are often discounted afterwards. Might be some left.

    Coleman of all brands has a decent one on a spike on Amazon. I bought it a couple of years ago after a digital Noma one died and it is still doing just fine.

    #465279
    TopNotch
    Pro
    elmwood park, NJ
    #465281

    Did it work at all when you first installed it? Is it possible you reversed the line and load? The mechanical nature of it would require it to be wired a specific way. If they were reversed it would lose time and quit turning the first time it hits the off cycle.

    Anything is possible if your wallet is thick enough ~ my father

    #465291
    TopNotch
    Pro
    elmwood park, NJ

    Its wired correctly, but it didnt not click on in sync with the actually time.

    Working Pro since 1993

    Tom M

    #465326

    Looking at the reviews on HD it looks like the problem may be that the dial may be binding on the faceplate. I really do not like mechanical timers because they have no back-up for power failures.

    If the dial isn’t binding and the line and load side of the hot wires are correct, then I would take it back as a faulty timer. I have had good success with the digital programmable wall timers. They have battery backup and many don’t require the neutral in the switch box.

    Anything is possible if your wallet is thick enough ~ my father

    #465328
    58Chev
    Pro
    Etobicoke, ON

    I have a timer like that on a couple of power bars and they always loose time after a few weeks.
    Try to see if you can convince the customer to go with a digital one, if you can not get this one to operate properly.

    “If you don’t pass on the knowledge you have to others, it Dies with you”
    — Glenn Botting

    #465352
    TopNotch
    Pro
    elmwood park, NJ

    I put it back on the customer. Let him pick up what he wants. He picked out the one I installed but I bought it. I’m not going to be married to these things. Labor only, as needed.

    Working Pro since 1993

    Tom M

    #465357
    kurt@welkerhomes.com
    Pro
    Owatonna, MN - Minnesota

    I have used timers that fit in a switch box, you set the time and latitude and longitude and they automatically adjust for the length of the day and daylight savings time. After several years they go bad and need to be replaced. Overall, they have worked well for me.

    #465359
    r-ice
    Pro
    Durham region, ON

    i bought a similar mechanical one for a power bar for christmas lights and it seems to work fine, mind you i didn’t have it hardwired.

    #465395
    jponto07
    Moderator
    Bloomington, IN

    Looking at the reviews on HD it looks like the problem may be that the dial may be binding on the faceplate. I really do not like mechanical timers because they have no back-up for power failures.

    If the dial isn’t binding and the line and load side of the hot wires are correct, then I would take it back as a faulty timer. I have had good success with the digital programmable wall timers. They have battery backup and many don’t require the neutral in the switch box.

    Sounds faulty to me too….but, in my experience when a mechanical timer fails, the light Stay ON..not off.

    Jon P.
    Timber Carpentry & Construction
    https://www.facebook.com/timbercarpentry/
    Instagram

    #465405
    svensshutters
    Pro
    Colorado Springs, CO

    This sounds like a whole lot of, you get what you pay for. My experiance with the mechanical ones is that they also don’t keep time well. After a period of time, they have to be adjusted again so that the time is right. It is also a pain in the rear to try to get them synced with actuall time.

    #465409
    TopNotch
    Pro
    elmwood park, NJ

    Thats why I mentioned not hitting the breaker could have cause a nic or an arc that messes with the device. IDK

    Thanks everyone for chiming in some ideas.

    Working Pro since 1993

    Tom M

    #465426
    MrFid
    Pro
    Sudbury, MA

    http://www.homedepot.com/p/Defiant-20-Amp-7-Day-7-Event-In-Wall-Digital-Timer-49814/203678179

    This one is the one I have installed in one location in my house, which does what your client wants; turns on/off exterior lights automatically. It works great, but one thing you should know is that I wanted to install two. The one that worked was a single pole switch. Works like a charm, and includes a “random” function where it turns on the timer at a random time within a half-hour of the ‘on’ time, and same for off. This deters burglars. You also set your time zone and rough latitude, and there includes a ‘dusk/dawn’ switch. The second one I was trying to install on the dead-end side of a 3-way switch with power coming in at the light (a weird situation). I couldn’t get it to work correctly, and after an hour on the phone with the company, I had to return in. The gent was very nice, and spent a lot of time trying to get it to work. I’d definitely buy again. Had mine for about 5 months now.

    #465432
    jponto07
    Moderator
    Bloomington, IN

    @TopNotch
    On the other hand….

    Why not install a photocell and be done with the timer altogether?

    Jon P.
    Timber Carpentry & Construction
    https://www.facebook.com/timbercarpentry/
    Instagram

    #466909
    svensshutters
    Pro
    Colorado Springs, CO

    Why not install a photocell and be done with the timer altogether?

    There is another thought.

    #471462

    @TopNotch what was the finally outcome . A new unit install or something else . Could just got a broken one from HD . People like to return anything. They could of broke it .

    Always willing to learn .

    #471483
    mattryyc
    Pro
    Calgary, Alberta

    I recently installed a few of the Belkin Wemo switches, don’t wire them hot but they work well. All programmed through the app on your phone so they connect to wifi and get their time when you set the time zone. Works really well and has some more advanced settings like working off of sunrise and sunset plus vacation modes too. I paid about $40 Canadian for each one so not too bad.

    #471648
    TopNotch
    Pro
    elmwood park, NJ

    @TopNotch what was the finally outcome . A new unit install or something else . Could just got a broken one from HD . People like to return anything. They could of broke it .

    A new device

    Working Pro since 1993

    Tom M

    #471667

    I have only had good luck with the Intermatic brand of timers whether they be the old school heavy duty rotary style ir their digital line. The last ine I installed was their digital one and it was easy to program, adjusted for daylight savings time, and adjusted itself for sunrise and sunset based on a calendar. Add in battery backup and it was a set once and done install.

    Andrew

    A Working Pro since 1995!

    Member since March 26, 2014.

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