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Help adding switch to wall light

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[OP]
Deal Addict
Mar 5, 2012
1983 posts
162 upvotes
Guelph

Help adding switch to wall light

I'm using Phillips wireless dimmer and bulbs in an always-on wall light that doesn't have its own wired switch. After a power outage, even if the lights were turned off, they default ON when power is restored, apparently as some kind of safety feature. So if it happens in the middle of the night or while on vacation, those lights are now on until you turn them back off. I need a solution for this...

I thought I found a solution, Skylink makes a wireless receiver that can be wired in the electrical box behind the wall light, and paired with their own wireless switch, but after reading the instructions it sounds like they too say if the power source is switched on, which it will be without a dedicated switch, the lights will revert to on upon power restoration. I can't believe such a trivial thing is getting in the way, anyone with experience, suggestions?
9 replies
Deal Addict
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Mar 31, 2005
3354 posts
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Calgary
Wouldn't it be easier and cheaper to buy wifi enabled bulbs? Then you could control them remotely regardless of any power outages at home as long as your wifi comes back on.
[OP]
Deal Addict
Mar 5, 2012
1983 posts
162 upvotes
Guelph
TotallyKiller wrote: Wouldn't it be easier and cheaper to buy wifi enabled bulbs? Then you could control them remotely regardless of any power outages at home as long as your wifi comes back on.
Then I have to rely on the wifi coming back on, and what, checking my app every hour of the day to see if there's been an outage and the lights have reactivated themselves!? Trying to go forwards here not backwards.
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Sep 9, 2012
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Oakville, ON
dtm252535 wrote: Then I have to rely on the wifi coming back on, and what, checking my app every hour of the day to see if there's been an outage and the lights have reactivated themselves!? Trying to go forwards here not backwards.
What's the issue if the bulb is an LED and gets left on for a few hours, or days, or even weeks? It's like pennies per day....
[OP]
Deal Addict
Mar 5, 2012
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Guelph
CanadianLurker wrote: What's the issue if the bulb is an LED and gets left on for a few hours, or days, or even weeks? It's like pennies per day....
So you removed all the switches in your house for that reason? Helpful answers need reply only. Thanks.
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Sep 9, 2012
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dtm252535 wrote: So you removed all the switches in your house for that reason? Helpful answers need reply only. Thanks.
No, I didn't and wouldn't remove all the switches in my house for that reason.

My answer was based on you saying that you had an always on light. You had options to control it remotely in lieu of a switch. You were worried if it was lit always on after a power outage.

I merely tried to point out that I don't see an issue if it was left on for several days until you came back from vacation.

While being away and having a power outage causing the lit to become always on is certainly a possibility, the actual probability of that happening is remote. And if it should happen the down side is not catastrophic.

Therefore, I wouldn't shy away from the suggestions just due to the unlikely scenario of having a light left on while on vacation.

Otherwise, just wire a switch to the light then.
Deal Guru
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Mar 23, 2008
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Edmonton
Get a different switch? Pretty sure my Lutron Caseta switch doesn't default to ON.

People are trying to help. They're just having trouble understanding the problem you're trying to solve. There may be creative ways to solve your issue that you haven't thought of yet.

ETA: Just had a power failure last night. I can confirm the Caseta switch did not default to ON when power returned.

C
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Mar 31, 2005
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If your wifi doesn't come back on that's a whole separate problem which would end any remote automation device chat now. And if you're worried that you're going to have multiple outages per day, again, your bulbs aren't your biggest issue. Do you regularly have hourly outages?

What I've suggested would allow you to remotely monitor and toggle/control the lights even if the rest of your switches are messed up, and wouldn't require you to buy new receivers. But if you see this as backwards, then I'm guessing that you're just looking for support for what you think is already your solution instead of us helping you brainstorm. Best of luck.
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Dec 5, 2009
5740 posts
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dtm252535 wrote: I'm using Phillips wireless dimmer and bulbs in an always-on wall light that doesn't have its own wired switch. After a power outage, even if the lights were turned off, they default ON when power is restored, apparently as some kind of safety feature. So if it happens in the middle of the night or while on vacation, those lights are now on until you turn them back off. I need a solution for this...

I thought I found a solution, Skylink makes a wireless receiver that can be wired in the electrical box behind the wall light, and paired with their own wireless switch, but after reading the instructions it sounds like they too say if the power source is switched on, which it will be without a dedicated switch, the lights will revert to on upon power restoration. I can't believe such a trivial thing is getting in the way, anyone with experience, suggestions?
No experience with this, sorry. But That seems like a hell of a lot of work and expense to solve for a problem that has a minuscule chance of ever occurring. I mean power failures are rare and enough, and now add in that you would be on vacation when it happens. I would just leave it.

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