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Thread: Lighting Automation - Insteon Iris

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    Lighting Automation - Insteon Iris

    From a post on this forum I have been researching using the Insteon system to control some lights around my pool via automation. I noticed that Lowes sells a similar system called the Iris system. Does anyone have any experience with either of these systems Pros/Cons/User Reviews that might help me in making my decision, or even offer an alternative suggestion.

    For right now, here are the basics that I would like to consider controlling with an automated system.

    Turning On/Off my 500W standard pool light
    Turning On/Off (maybe even dimming) my halogen flood lights that surround my deck/patio/pool
    Turning On/Off some basic landscape lighting

    Right now I have switches to turn these things on and off, but they are not all located near each other, so when I go to turn things on or off I feel like I am constantly walking all around my house. I would love a system that uses a remote, or even better my phone to be able to control these things.
    IG W/Vinyl Liner Oval 18x40, 21K gal, Oval 3'-8'
    Pentair Intelliflo VS Pump, Sand Filter

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: Lighting Automation - Insteon Iris

    Yev, it appears you haven't received a reply yet on your post about automated lighting. Not sure if you have resolved your issue by now, but this reply should get your posting updated back to the top of the queue where hopefully someone experienced with your specific question can provide some constructive answers. We apologize for the delay, and thank you for checking-in with TFP. Have a great day.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
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    Re: Lighting Automation - Insteon Iris

    Thanks for the bump. Still haven't pulled the trigger on buying anything, but need to in the next few weeks. So if anyone has any feedback they are willing to offer I would appreciate it.
    IG W/Vinyl Liner Oval 18x40, 21K gal, Oval 3'-8'
    Pentair Intelliflo VS Pump, Sand Filter

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    Re: Lighting Automation - Insteon Iris

    I have a Lowe's Iris system that I use primarily as an alarm system and remote control thermostat. One of the kits that I bought came with a "smart plug", I plugged a lamp into it and verified that it worked and I could turn it on and off from my phone, but that's about it. I have another system that I use for lighting control, but based on my experience with Iris, I think it would probably be fine for basic lighting control.

    The interface is pretty basic and doesn't seem to be very configurable, but it works. I use the Android app, once you log in, you have a screen with several options (Alarm, Control, Thermostat, etc.), select Control and you see all of the controllable devices and you can see the status and turn them on and off from that screen.

    It is a "cloud based" system, so the app connects to a server on the Internet somewhere and the server relays the commands to your hub. There are different service levels, I use the basic service, which is free, I think the premium service is around $10/mo. I'm not sure what all the differences are between the free and paid service, I think there are more notification options with the paid service, and it allows you to set up rules for more automation as opposed to just straight remote control.

    If you have any specific questions, I'll be glad to answer them if I can.

    Russ
    11,500 gallon 14x28 IG vinyl pool, 3/4 HP FloPro Pump, CS200 cartridge filter, Polaris 280 with booster pump. Testing with Taylor K-2600 test kit and adding liquid chlorine with a Beta DR-2000 peristaltic pump.

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    Re: Lighting Automation - Insteon Iris

    What system do you use for lighting control? And how do you feel about that one?
    IG W/Vinyl Liner Oval 18x40, 21K gal, Oval 3'-8'
    Pentair Intelliflo VS Pump, Sand Filter

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    Re: Lighting Automation - Insteon Iris

    I didn't mention the system I use for lighting control because I wouldn't really recommend it. I use X-10 modules and switches for my lights. It's an old system, it sends remote commands over AC electrical wiring, so it's subject to interference from noise on the power lines, and there are issues with devices on one AC phase not being able to communicate with devices on the other phase. It's possible to work around those limitations, and it works OK for me, but I wouldn't recommend it for a new setup. The only reason I'm still using it is because I had a lot of switches and modules that I could use and I didn't want to spend the money to replace them with newer technology.

    For my control system, I'm using OpenRemote, I can use it to control my X-10 modules and migrate to another technology like Z-Wave as I need to add or replace switches or modules. OpenRemote is essentially free software, there's a free app for Android and IOS to control devices, you just need to provide hardware for the controller. I like OpenRemote, it's very flexible and configurable, but setting up the controller and designing the interface for the apps is not particularly user friendly. I've set up a couple of basic interfaces for my phone and table, but that's about it, I never seem to have time to improve on the design.

    If I was starting from scratch, I'm really not sure what I'd do. The Iris system seems to work well, and it's pretty affordable if you catch it on sale at Lowe's. I went with OpenRemote because I could use my existing hardware, but if I was starting from scratch, I'd probably pick something easier to use.

    Russ
    11,500 gallon 14x28 IG vinyl pool, 3/4 HP FloPro Pump, CS200 cartridge filter, Polaris 280 with booster pump. Testing with Taylor K-2600 test kit and adding liquid chlorine with a Beta DR-2000 peristaltic pump.

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