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Another Electrical Question

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Jan 22, 2014, 08:44 AM
redoverfarm
Another Electrical Question
Maybe this is more up Commonwealth Sparkys alley but is open to all. I have an outside motion sensor light at my outbuilding. It is also tied in with a 2 gallon heated dog watering bucket. Yep you guessed it. Everytime in the winter that the bucket thermostat calls for electric to heat the bucket the motion lights come on. Last night was a real killer as the temperature dipped to 1F and the lights stayed on almost all night. Burrr...

I had replaced the sensor with a new and improved "heat" activated which didn't last the week. HaHa. So I went back to the older style of motion sensor. It is still affected but not to the extent of the "heat activated" one. I cannot run another circuit to seperate the two as it is in conduit underground/pavement. The line was originally installed to provide electric to an outside furnace(120v) but the furnace has since been removed. No great loads on the existing circuit other than the two aforementioned.

OK OK to the chase. Is there anything that I can install or change to prevent this. Filter of sorts.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: redoverfarm,
Jan 22, 2014, 11:22 AM
swschrad
I have heard of aquarium heater thermostats "chattering" on make and break of the circuit, generating RF interference like a Russian jammer station. the quick fix is, of course, replacement.

used to be in the old days, they'd recommend a capacitor across the line at the thermostat, to quench the arc. that is dicey in water, and not special advice these days anyway. you'd have to use a type Y line filter capacitor for safety (digikey, etc.)

I'd suggest starting with something like toroid clip-overs on the line and see if you can choke out enough of the conducted RF interference at the source (since it is going to be affecting radio waves elsewhere.) radio shack has a rectangular open-and-wrap toroid that's a good start, but singly more costly than the MFJ-701 filter pack at any ham radio store or online, 4 for $25.

if you have one of the old-time fluorescent line filters availiable, looks like the magnetic ballast for a 2x30 watt fixture and weighs like it, hook that in series with the controller for the light. closest substitute is a CorCom type line filter that you might see inside a piece of computer or industrial equipment. a 2 amp job is quite sufficient, couple bucks in a surplus bin, perhaps $10-15 new from somebody like DigiKey or Mouser Electronics online.


sig: if this is a new economy, how come they still want my old-fashioned money?
Jan 22, 2014, 08:18 PM
CommonwealthSparky
Here is my idea, not sure if it is possible as that you have stated such.
But can you tug one more wire though the conduit and make that a second hot? This way the heater and the sensor is powered independently of the other. Then have both circuits sharing the neutral and ground. Not that I am a big fan of shared neutrals but it is allowable. Caution though as those shared neutrals will not work on AFCI protected circuitry.
I hate to see Spikes water dish turn into a hockey puck. Wink May theory this one out in my brainbox and post a follow up reply.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: CommonwealthSparky,


Popeye only reached for the Spinach can as a last resort...
Jan 22, 2014, 09:58 PM
redoverfarm
I don't think I can pull another one through Sparky. I had a heck of a time getting this one through. I used a abandoned 3/4" furnace water line as the conduit and it was a trip running the 12/2 underground cable through. I don't worry as much with the dog bucket as I do having the spot lights on all night.
Jan 23, 2014, 08:08 AM
CommonwealthSparky
Copy that Houston. I'm thinking that the water heater is wired ahead of the motion sensor. Tripping the sensor with a false trip. If so, any way to wire the sensor ahead of Spikes water dish. This may or may not help but worth thinking about trying.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: CommonwealthSparky,


Popeye only reached for the Spinach can as a last resort...
Jan 29, 2014, 10:56 AM
redoverfarm
Sparky I lucked out. Got to looking and I have another wire in a seperate pipe that I originally used. I remember pulling a heavier wire (which I am using now) because of a air compressor in the building kept tripping the breaker. I upgraded it. So I can run the lights off of the previous wire and dedicate the heavier (20 amp)for the heater. Now "smack" my hand because now I have the heater run on a heavy extension cord which is temporary. If the weather would just warm up a little (-7F this morning) hopefully I can get it more permanent and everything will be good.
Jan 30, 2014, 08:32 AM
CommonwealthSparky
Well if that temporary cord is outside now that I can live with. As long as you are not using those brown extension cords grandma had around the house. Then you could walk outside and watch that cord glow in the night.
Last 0° F day in these parts according to the weather people. Will not miss that at all.


Popeye only reached for the Spinach can as a last resort...
Jan 30, 2014, 08:52 AM
redoverfarm
Yes CS it is outside. One of those Orange ( probably 14ga) . I am sure that it is not getting hot today. -19F this morning. Burrr. If this keeps up I will be able to ice skate in my hot tub.
Jan 30, 2014, 02:17 PM
CommonwealthSparky
Those orange cords are rated for 15 amps, methinks. Just as you posted. And yes it does have good old mother nature chilling down that stranded copper. Big Grin

Bit of a Spam bump maybe as well.


Popeye only reached for the Spinach can as a last resort...
Jan 31, 2014, 03:33 AM
Frodo
redoverfarm,,did you use lube when you pulled your wire thru the conduit?
2 romex should fit in a 3/4 conduit...inless they have short radius 90's

i have found that using lube or soap makes a world of difference
between wont go and will go Smile
Jan 31, 2014, 07:50 AM
CommonwealthSparky
Many a time Dawn dish liquid came to the rescue. Wink


Popeye only reached for the Spinach can as a last resort...