Leviton's Wi-Fi Load Center and Smart Circuit Breakers


#1

Ummm, no. But individual zigbee or z-wave smart breakers (Square D QO series, please) would be handy.


Remote Breakers or Relays
#2

WOW.. that is a great solution that is just begging for a problem it can solve. {shaking head}


#3

Oh, it solves a couple of problems in terms of load monitoring, power usage monitoring, and voltage tracking...

But how it does it 100% cloud based won't work for me.


#4

I can see value in this for someone who owns rental properties. Being able to remotely monitor circuit breakers is something I wish I had a couple times. I'm guessing two things are true about this product;

  1. It's expensive. (Not just including installation)
  2. It's cloud dependent. ( and probably will have a subscription offering to do anything useful)

No thanks. I'd much rather have a traditional breakers with Zigbee breakers installed.


#5

I was reading this this morning, and realized its ideal installation would be "new build" as opposed to refit. Seems like if you put multiple load centers with this capability in, AND the house was wired smartly, this could provide lots of value.

However that cloud word really kills it. Meh.


#6

I use Brultech devices (GEM and ECM-1240) to monitor my sub & main panel circuits. It's a retrofit, vs RNR like Leviton's Load-Center, and the data never escapes my house.

Practical uses... well, one of the circuits went a little nuts recently and was pulling 200W 24x7 (spiking to 1KW at times). The circuit-level monitor made it easy to see which circuit caused the baseline shift.

So generally not all that useful, but very handy when fault-finding and/or tuning base-load :wink:


#7

@guessed How do you like the Brultech? I've been looking for a system that could be expanded to all circuits on my panel... But I'm not an electrician, and I'd rather not unhook each breaker to slide the donut CTs over the wires. I have several Aeotec home energy monitors that I have monitoring a few circuits, and they use split CTs, which are easy to install... They're just quite large if I were to try installing many of them in the box.


#8

That's pretty cool. Hadn't seen that before.


#9

I like it a lot, it's how I tuned my house enegy usage.

You're right though, there are small donut CT's on each breaker, and you'll do a one-time cutover for these by doing exactly what you said (breaker-off, undo wire, put in CT, reconnect, breaker-on).

For the Sub-panel, the main line uses Split CT's so that's easier.

For the Main-panel, the incoming lines are on large/flat square bars, so even the normal (round) Split CT's wouldn't work. I monitor all the sub-circuits there so I ended up leaving out the mains (and computing it later)

All the CT wires themselves come out the bottom of the Breaker box, and then into the GEM.

Configuration-wise, the (newer) GEM is a lot easier to setup than the ECM-1240 is. The latter requires a Windows box to run the config tool whereas the GEM has a Web Interface.

I have a Rainforest Eagle-200 in a box somewhere. I used to read the SmartMeter directly to compare results but PGE changed the meter out at some point and knocked this device off the net. One of these will let you see/detect variations in base-load, so you could combine it with a few per-circuit things to get an overall picture.

The components of my system are:


#10

Installing the donut transformers can be intimidating for those not used to working with mains.

I do have some suggestions:

What I describe here is a very conservative procedure. Some will say some of the steps are not required, and they would be correct. However the steps are the safest method I can think of and there is little to go wrong if followed.
(However I take no responsibility)

  1. Take photos of the breaker connections prior to doing anything. Take special notice on how far the insulation is from the breaker terminal.

  2. Turn off "ALL" the breakers.

  3. Turn off the "MAIN" breaker.

  4. Unscrew one terminal at a time, install the donut transformer, reconnect the wire to the terminal.

  5. Inspect the insulation and compare it to the first step. This is to be sure you have the wire fully into the terminal.

  6. Pull on the wire a little to be sure it is properly secured in the terminal.

  7. Go to the next.

  8. When all are complete, turn on the "MAIN". The turn on and check each breaker at a time.

You should be good to go.