Frequently asked questions
Home Automation related
Why do modules not work in some sockets, and when they are removed to other sockets they work fine?
This can happen in a multi-phase system, whereby the X10 signals are not coupled between the phases. In many cases the coupling of the phases is already present. In other cases the coupling can be realised by installing one or more Coupler/Filters (FD10 or CAT4000). When 3 phases need to be coupled, it is necessary to install 3 FD10 Coupler/Filters or 1 CAT4000 Active repeater.
At the same time, the FD10 Coupler/Filters prevent that X10 signals enter or leave the house.
that are installed a long distance of the controller do not respond to commands, while others work.
How does this come?
The X10 signal is transmitted on the power line with a signal amplitude of 5 V. The Modules respond to commands when the X10 signals have a minimal amplitude of 50 mV. We can say that there is a significant tolerance. But, sometimes the signal can be weakened by a big inductive or capacitive user. He "absorbs" the X10 signal. Several solutions are possible to prevent the influence of this user on the X10 signal. The Controller can be installed on a central place between the Modules. If possible as far away as possible from the heavy user. Now the signals should reach the Modules with sufficient amplitude. Another effective solution is to install a Coupler/Filter (FD10) between the heavy user and the power line. Now, the X10 signals can not reach the heavy user and can therefore not be influenced.
Why do some Modules turn on and off spontaneously?
Sometimes an X10 system can be influenced by interference from another X10 system nearby. The X10 signal is transmitted on the power line which makes it possible that X10 signals enter or leave the house. This problem can be solved by choosing another House Code (A...P). With the help of the CM11 Computer Interface we can detect which House Codes are used in the immediate area, so that we always can choose a free House Code. The installation of Coupler/Filters (FD10) prevents that X-10 signals leave or enter the house.
I want to dim remotely my low voltage halogen lights with my IntelliHome X10 system. Is this possible?
The LW11, LD11 and LWM1 are suitable for dimming halogen lighting. However, the dimmer does not work for every lamp, because not every transformer can be dimmed. Test the combination first, before you fit the transformers. X10 users have indicated that all Osram electronic transformers (Mouse Dimmers/type HTM) and PEHA electronic transformers work well. Wound transformers always have to be of the 'ring core' type, not 'E-core' type (f.i. Erea). 230 V Halogen lighting normally will work without problems.
The LM12 Lamp Module and the LM12W Wired Lamp Module are NOT fitted to dim low voltage halogen lights with transfo.
Can the system be used when other devices also use the powerline, like baby monitoring systems?
Thanks to the set-up of the signal other sources fo interference can not activate or deactivate Modules from the X10 system. Sometimes the X10 signal can be influenced by e.g. a baby monitoring system that is constantly in the "talk mode". The presence of this kind of interference can make the signal too weak to reach the Modules.
Is there Macintosh software available? Where can I get it?
Indigo for Mac OS X V 4.0 Lite - Indigo for Mac OS X V 4.0 Pro - XTension for Mac OS X
How many timers or macros can I store in the ActiveHome interface?
Typically about a hundred macros and timers combined, but it varies greatly depending on how you group items together as they are compressed before downloading.
What are the batteries in the ActiveHome interface for?
To back up the interface's real time clock during a power outage. Events and macros are stored in EEPROM and will not be lost even when power is removed. Note that when new batteries are inserted into the interface, you must inform the ActiveHome system as it keeps track of the time that the interface runs on battery to give an indication of the life remaining.
How much electricity does the X10 System use?
Each module consumes less than 2W. Therefore even 25 modules consumes the electricity equal to a 50W Light bulb. But do not forget that every time a light, an appliance or a device is turned off sooner than it would be, you save energy. The X10 system is designed to save energy. The System therefore will very quickly save you money on your electricity bills.
I would like to control my house with a telephone? Even when I am away?
Yes. By using the SC28, Safeguard or TotalGuard alarm systems, you can control all X10 modules simply by pushing the buttons on your phone from anywhere in the world. This system is protected by a password.
I would like to turn an outside light on by a timer to make my home look lived-in. I'm familiar with the X10 system and know that I can use an X10 timer and replace the light switch that presently operates this light with an X10 Wall Switch Module. However, even though I've been told that installing the X10 Wall Switch Module is simple, I'm not that handy and I'm afraid of working with something that needs to be wired-in. Is there any other way to control my outside light?
You can use the "screw-in" Lamp Module. You simply unscrew your existing inside or outside light, screw the LM15 module into the existing light socket and then screw the bulb into the socket on the LM15 - simple! The LM15 fits most types of light fixture, and can be used indoors or outdoors. (for the UK, we also have the Bayonet Socket Rocket Lamp Module available, check IH2026)
I have a satellite receiver in my family room and also have it wired with coax to the TV in my bedroom. I find it very inconvenient to have to go down to the family room to set up the channel I want to watch before I retire to the bedroom. I have to do this because the remote control I have for the satellite receiver won't work from my bedroom. Is there any way to control my satellite receiver using X10 products?
We have a product called the Powermid. It consists of two elegantly styled pyramid shaped products. You plug one of them (the transmitter) into you bedroom and aim your satellite remote control at it. When you press a button on the remote control the POWERMID receives the infrared signals from your remote control and converts them into wireless radio frequency signals. It sends them to the other POWERMID which you have plugged in down in your family room facing your satellite receiver. This second POWERMID (the receiver) receives the wireless signals from the other POWERMID and converts them back into infrared signals to control your satellite receiver. You may want to purchase an additional remote control for your satellite receiver for added convenient so you can leave one in the family room and one in your bedroom, or you can purchase a Universal Remote Control to perform the same function as your satellite receiver remote control.
How can I control equipment that is placed in a closed cupboard?
With our ebode IR Link pro mini kit, IR Link pro kit, IR Link pro flush kit,... systems you can use your own remote control through the doors of thecabinet.
I would like to install a security system in my home, I don't think that a local siren is enough and would like a system that calls out for help. I've heard that most systems that hook up to a central monitoring station require a monthly monitoring fee. That can work out to be quite expensive in the long run! Is there any kind of security system available that can contact someone by phone without my having to pay a monthly monitoring fee?
Yes, we have such Security Systems.
SafeGuard and TotalGuard systems can be set up to call a friend, relative, or neighbor in case of alarm.