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Wrong channels turning on and off


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This is my first year using LOR. I'm using 2 LOR1602 controllers. Unit ID's are set to 01 and 02.

The hardware utility (rev. 1.5.10) will id both units (01 - CTB16D ver4.01 and 02 - CTB16D ver4.01 ).

Unit 01 controls the lights on the house and unit 02 controls the yard lights.

I'm having three issues:

1. During testing the yard lights which are connected to unit 02 will not turn on.

2. During testing the house lights only channels 1 to 8 which are connected to unit 01 will turn on.

3. During testing the house lights (channels 9 to 16) which are connected to unit 01 will not turn on. They only turn on when unit 02 is turned on.

Any help or input is greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

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Sounds to me that you didn't get the channel configurations in your sequence set correctly.

Click on the Channel Description -> Change Channel Settings to see if you have the channel configured to match your controllers.

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I've had a number of these problems - the wrong channels lighting, a channel lighting randomly, some dead channels.

In every case, the fix was one of the following:

(1) plug the right cord into the right channel,

(2) eliminate duplicate channel assignments in the sequence,

(3) plug cables back in that had come unplugged when I stepped on them, or

(4) correct the channel assignments in the sequence editor.

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mrdavis wrote:

My troubles occur when I'm in the hardware controller. I'm not running sequences just yet.


OK...

A couple of things to try:

1) Reset the controllers: Unplug, change ID to 00, plug in, verify rapidly flashing light

2) Set to two completely different ID's, e.g. 10 and 20 (instead of 01 and 02). Might be a problem with your switches...

-Tim
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Did everything you suggested. No luck, same problems. When I changed the unit ids from 01 and 02 to 10 and 20 the hardware utility would not find them (zero units located). Rebooted my pc and restarted the hardware utility. Still no luck.
I changed the unit ids back to 01 and 02. The hardware utility located them. Still have the original problems.


Thanks for your help.

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OK. Hardware utility found them. 2 units, id 10 and 20.

Thanks for the tip.

Still have the same problems with the lights. Very strange.

How can you easily tell if the fuses have gone bad?

Any help/input is appreciated.

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mrdavis wrote:

OK. Hardware utility found them. 2 units, id 10 and 20.

Thanks for the tip.

Still have the same problems with the lights. Very strange.

How can you easily tell if the fuses have gone bad?

Any help/input is appreciated.




You need to set them to 01 and 02 on the board not 10 & 20 , know what I mean , and set max controllers to 5 , it will find them faster.



Mike
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Sequence Dr. wrote:

You need to set them to 01 and 02 on the board not 10 & 20 , know what I mean , and set max controllers to 5 , it will find them faster.


They dont needto be 01 and 02, but you can set them back to that now. I had him set them to 10 and 20 just to see if the rightmost rotary dip switch had gone funky. Now we've ruled that out...

-Tim
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Did some more investigating. I set the unit ids back to 01 and 02. Hardware utility finds them. Still have the same light problems.

I disconnected all the data cables going into box 01 (controls the house lights) so it is totally isolated. BTW I'm using the USB485B adapter box to convert to cat5 cable going to the unit boxes.

Then connected the data cable from my pc to the input port on unit 02. I reran the hardware utility and it located the one unit id 02. I turned on the channels using the HW utility and half of the house lights erroneously turn on. The other half turn when unit 01 is turned on. All of the house lights are wired to unit 01 only.

None of the house lights should be on at all since the unit 01 they are wired to is not connected to the pc.

I have double checked all connections, they are correct and solid. All fuses in the light strings in the yard section are good.

On Tuesday evening all 32 of my light channels and both units were functioning correctly through the HW utility (no sequences running yet). Something happened, just not sure what.

Any ideas? Who should I talk with at LOR?

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mrdavis wrote:

I disconnected all the data cables going into box 01 (controls the house lights) so it is totally isolated. BTW I'm using the USB485B adapter box to convert to cat5 cable going to the unit boxes.

Then connected the data cable from my pc to the input port on unit 02. I reran the hardware utility and it located the one unit id 02. I turned on the channels using the HW utility and half of the house lights erroneously turn on. The other half turn when unit 01 is turned on. All of the house lights are wired to unit 01 only.

None of the house lights should be on at all since the unit 01 they are wired to is not connected to the pc.

Let me get this straight. You hooked up controller 02 to the computer, leaving controller 01 disconnected from the network. You then went into the hardware utility and selected unit 02 (which should be the only unit it finds) then send a 'lights on' command. At that point, the lights on 01 turn on?

By no means am I doubting you ... because I wasn't there. However, I don't see how that's possible. Did you try powering down the other controller when it wasn't connected? If there is no power to it, then it will be impossible for lights to come on. Should narrow down troubleshooting.

I'd also be checking my cables.

I'd also try changing away from 01 and 02. Sure, we think we've ruled out the rotary switches ... but something fishy is going on.
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I'll try powering off unit 01 and double checking all cables and connections. Also saw where LOR 1.6 was released. I'll install it and see what happens.

Thanks.

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I had the same problem at one time. Are both sides of your controllers plugged into the same circuit breaker? If they are plugged into differant circuits, then you have a 50/50 chance that they are on the same electical Phase and then you will get errors like you describe. I started one of mine when each side was on a differant phase and when running the HW utility, running a slow fade, I would get 1-8 solid on, 9-16 slow fade, until half way, then 1-8 would jump and start fadeing. To test, plug both cords into the same plug and then test it.

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Brad Bilger wrote:

I had the same problem at one time. Are both sides of your controllers plugged into the same circuit breaker? If they are plugged into differant circuits, then you have a 50/50 chance that they are on the same electical Phase and then you will get errors like you describe. I started one of mine when each side was on a differant phase and when running the HW utility, running a slow fade, I would get 1-8 solid on, 9-16 slow fade, until half way, then 1-8 would jump and start fadeing. To test, plug both cords into the same plug and then test it.


I've seen this electrical phase comment surface on the forums periodically. Can someone describe exactly what this means?
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contactmike1 wrote:

I've seen this electrical phase comment surface on the forums periodically. Can someone describe exactly what this means?


Most residential breaker boxes have 2 main feeds coming into them. A 110 Volt circuit is Alternating (the current reverses itself 60 times a second) With two feeds, one will be out of phase with the other. (when one is positive, the other is negative) the cycles are 180 degrees out of sync with each other. One feed will give you 110 volts. Put both together (Dryer, stove, water heater...) you get 220 volts.

If you open your breaker box, you will usually see three big wires coming in. Two will go to the top of the box, and one to the bottom or side. The bottom is the neutral. The top two will be the hots. Looking where the breakers attach, you will probally see two rails that the breakers clip into. The two rails are out of phase with each other. Touch a tester from Neutral to one, and you get 110. Touch a tester from the other to Neutral, you get 110. Touch a tester from one rail to the other, you get 220 volts. If you look at the picture, you will see the two rails at the bottom of the panel.

homewiringbreakerbox.jpg

When you install two breakers, one above the other, they will be on differant circuits (out of phase) See the way the rails are built? One above the other will put them on differant rails. They won't pump 220 volts into your controller, but wil confuse it badly. If you add two circuits for your controllers, they need to be BOTH on the same mounting rail (phase)

Gawd, I think that I confused myself with that one

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Ok, I kind of get it. I don't know anything about electrical stuff, but I manage to get all my stuff on one cicuit. :laughing:

So to understand this, you get this problem when the LEFT side of the board is on one phase, and the RIGHT side of the board is on the other? So different controllers can be on different phases, just not the same board?

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contactmike1 wrote:

Ok, I kind of get it. I don't know anything about electrical stuff, but I manage to get all my stuff on one cicuit. :laughing:

So to understand this, you get this problem when the LEFT side of the board is on one phase, and the RIGHT side of the board is on the other? So different controllers can be on different phases, just not the same board?

Correct. You can plug one box into the same circuit with no problem. If you plug both plugs into differant circuits, both the left side and the right side have be be in phase with each other, otherwise your controller does all sorts of weird stuff.. (enough to cause heart failure)
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Brad Bilger wrote:

(enough to cause heart failure)

:laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing:
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I use curcuits coming off of two different circuit panels so I cannot just look at the circuit panel to tell whether two circuits are in or out of phase. I found that the following works to test two circuits, however I am not an electrician:

If you cannot tell whether two circuits are in phase or out of phase you can test them using a volt meter. Take one leg of the volt meter and insert it into the hot side of circuit one. Take the second leg of the volt meter and insert it into the hot side of circuit two. If the volt meter reads somewhere around 220 volts, then the two circuits are not in phase. If the volt meter reads zero, then the two circuits are in phase (which is what you want).

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Problems resolved! My show is up and running!

After reading everyone's inputs to my thread I went back to basics and checked everything: power cables, light strings, control boxes, my wiring diagram from the ground up.

First, I made sure both power input cables to each unit were plugged into the same 20 amp outlet. Thanks for the tip Brad.

Next, my problem of lights turning on when there was supposedly no power to the control box was the result of some lights being routed to the wrong unit, even though I checked them before. Adding to this problem was a less than 100% correct wiring diagram which I used to connect wires to my boxes and develop my channel settings. As to how this diagram error happened, I'm pleading the 5th.

Finally, I discovered a blown fuse on one side of unit 02. I root caused this down to having too many C9 lights (8 strings over 4 channels) on one side of the controller. I moved 4 of the strings to the other side of the unit to balance it out and replaced the fuse.

I went back to my pc, opened the HW utility............Euraka! We have lights on all 32 channels.

Thank you to everyone who replied back to me from this LOR board and thanks to the support guys at LOR.

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