Author Topic: Issues with motion activated switch  (Read 637 times)

Spork

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Issues with motion activated switch
« on: March 22, 2017, 09:16:38 AM »

I've got this motion activated switch.  It is controlling a fan.  (See "random facts" below).  I installed it a couple of years ago (replacing a similar switch of a different brand).  When installed, it was working perfectly.  A couple years later and... It switches on fine.  It runs for the correct amount of time.  It turns off for about half a second, senses motion when there is none and starts back.  It mostly does this in low lighting conditions.  More light == better sensing of "no motion."  Eventually, it will sense no motion and stop, but after running that fan for a long, long time.

There *is* a light level adjustment screw.  Turning it a little clockwise off of the "sweet spot" (lights will come on in lighter conditions) will make it such that it cannot sense motion in any light.  Turning it a little counter clockwise off of the "sweet spot" (lights come on in less light) and it will NEVER turn off.  It constantly cycles back on after the run time.  I can cover the sensor with tape and it goes to the constant "never sensing" cycle off/on.


Random facts that are possibly just distractions:
  • I mentioned I replaced a different brand with this Leviton switch.  That different brand was doing the EXACT SAME THING... which was why I replaced it.
  • My location has a history of shitty power.  I've blown up circuit boards on lots of things.  Presumably this could be affecting the switches over time.  I do have a whole house surge unit, but I get lots of little power drop outs... and the surge protector isn't going to do anything for that.
  • If you'll notice, the troubleshooting in the instructions talk about the possibility of detecting motion due to being installed near a heat source.  I guess it is theoretically possible that the exhaust fan is pulling in warmer air and creating "heat".  The solution is to relocate the switch, though I am really tight on locations to relocate, so I'm skeptical I can do anything that makes a difference.
  • In connection with the relocation solution above: I have tried relocation once.  But, like I said, there are not very many areas to relocate to.  The second location was closer to the fan (probably bad) but not "looking" directly at where the air would be zooming in.  I am sure the air is still rushing towards the exhaust fan, though.

Spork

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Re: Issues with motion activated switch
« Reply #1 on: March 22, 2017, 10:36:38 AM »

Dust, most definitely.  This is a de-stink fan for a cat litter box. 

I'll look at the sensor.  Good idea.  I think I can get to it without even taking off the switchplate cover.  (The adjustment screws are accessible by just snapping off a cover... I think the sensor cover might as well.)