Occupancy Sensor with full override?

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Old 01-20-18, 04:44 PM
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Question Occupancy Sensor with full override?

Is there an occupancy sensor that has a full override switch, i.e. when the override is switched on, the sensor never kicks in until the override is completely switched off?

Right now all the leviton sensors I have will turn off even after I manually turn the light switch on, which is fine for where I am using them. But I need to install 2 more in my garage around my work area where I want to be able to set them on when I m working on my cars etc and they never turn off (for instance when I'm under the car changing the oil there is no way the sensor will detect any movement, yet I want the lights to stay on).
 
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Old 01-20-18, 04:57 PM
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As far as I know.... you can manually turn then on but you cannot keep them on. They eventually time out.

Why can't put your workshop lights on a regular switch ?
 
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Old 01-20-18, 05:10 PM
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You could put a 2-gang box in there, and place a regular light switch next to the occupancy sensor. Wire them in parallel. When the snap switch is on, the lights will stay on. Turn the snap switch off to resume normal auto operation.

But I fail to see why you'd put an occupancy sensor there in the first place. Sounds like a good way to end up with an air hammer through your wrist or something.

Edit- Actually they do make sensors that can be beaten into submission:

Leviton PR150-1LW 500W
Topgreener TSOS5-W
... and probably several others.
 

Last edited by core; 01-20-18 at 05:32 PM.
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Old 01-20-18, 05:33 PM
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Well because I also want them to light up when there is activity as well It's a serious genuine use case because I have a big garage and we use the garage all the time.

The thing is, the LED lights are amazing. They draw literally no power, they look amazing, and they are cool (not wire melting hot like bulbs) to touch. I want the entire place to light up all the time when someone is walking around BUT lights to stay ON if I'm working there.

The 2 gang box solution is probably what I'm after and I can do that. How would that work? What does it mean for it to be wired in parallel? Assume that I have a switched loop setup (so white wire will be incoming and black will be outgoing).

Also, do they have to be right next to each other? Because I could put the occupancy sensor on the ceiling (best coverage area).
 
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Old 01-20-18, 05:53 PM
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I edited my last post to include some suitable sensors that do what you want out of the box. That would probably be the easiest way, which doesn't take up 2-gang box.

I didn't check, but they probably both require neutrals. You're not wiring up brand new switch loops without neutrals, are you?? (you mentioned white wire incoming) I don't know if this is new wiring that you're dealing with/planning. I'm guessing this is the same garage where you were gonna poke the romex through the sheet rock in places for this run, eh?

I can draw a diagram for the parallel deal, but it's just the 2 switches side-by-side with a couple few pigtails to the switches. Incoming wire (you said white) would be connected to line side of occupancy sensor _and_ one of the screws on the snap switch. Outgoing wire (black in your example) would be connected to load side of sensor and the 2nd screw on snap switch. Sensor would have to be the type where you don't need a neutral or you'll have to run 12/3 and the colors will be different in that case.

To put the sensor on the ceiling you'd of course have to run new cable and adjust a bunch of stuff. Actually all it would take is one new cable from the fixture to the new sensor on the ceiling, and you could leave your existing switch loop more or less in place.
 

Last edited by core; 01-20-18 at 06:38 PM.
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Old 01-20-18, 06:51 PM
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Originally Posted by core View Post
I edited my last post to include some suitable sensors that do what you want out of the box. That would probably be the easiest way, which doesn't take up 2-gang box.

I didn't check, but they probably both require neutrals. You're not wiring up brand new switch loops without neutrals, are you?? (you mentioned white wire incoming) I don't know if this is new wiring that you're dealing with/planning. I'm guessing this is the same garage where you were gonna poke the romex through the sheet rock in places for this run, eh?

I can draw a diagram for the parallel deal, but it's just the 2 switches side-by-side with a couple few pigtails to the switches. Incoming wire (you said white) would be connected to line side of occupancy sensor _and_ one of the screws on the snap switch. Outgoing wire (black in your example) would be connected to load side of sensor and the 2nd screw on snap switch. Sensor would have to be the type where you don't need a neutral or you'll have to run 12/3 and the colors will be different in that case.

To put the sensor on the ceiling you'd of course have to run new cable and adjust a bunch of stuff. Actually all it would take is one new cable from the fixture to the new sensor on the ceiling, and you could leave your existing switch loop more or less in place.
Thank you core. Yes this is a new circuit and I was planning on running a switch loop with no neutral. I have bunch of 12/2 romex and I didnt want to get 12/3 as that cable will have very limited use.

And yes this is the same garage and I actually successfully installed my LED wraps as per that thread I created a week ago. You may ask why dont you just add more in that circuit and the reason is because the line for that circuit is the old crumbling cable and I dont want to add any more load to that circuit. In fact, if it were easy, I would just terminate that circuit there completely and reuse everything but it;s not easy. So for now I decided to leave that as is and build a new circuit from newer receptacles I had installed (all 12/2 and 20amp and very light load) and build everything from scratch.

So the way it's setup right now is I have that existing sensor controlling the LED wraps (on the old circuit). That;s only 2 LED wraps, both 4' feet. I want to add bunch of more lights/loops on top of this where I want to have each car bay have its own sensor controlled (with override) loop with 5 of those 4' LED wraps (I know it will be bright!) for a total of 10 light fixtures (and 2 sensors). It's a lot of work I know but I spend so much time in the garage (and its a big garage) and this is something that will really improve things.

Going back to your explanation about the 2 gang parallel setup, are you actually saying I pigtail everything and literally parallel connect them?

White (incoming) ====> 2 pig tails (1 goes to sensor and 1 goes to the other switch)
Black (outgoing) ====> 2 pig tails (1 goes to sensor and 1 goes to the other switch)
 
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Old 01-20-18, 07:41 PM
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White (incoming) ====> 2 pig tails (1 goes to sensor and 1 goes to the other switch)
Black (outgoing) ====> 2 pig tails (1 goes to sensor and 1 goes to the other switch)

Yes, exactly. It ends up functioning something like this:



By the way, if you wanted a neutral some place, rather than wiring a switch loop you could pull two 12/2 cables down to the switch. Power in and out like a more conventional switching arrangement.
 
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Old 01-21-18, 04:49 AM
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Originally Posted by core View Post
Yes, exactly. It ends up functioning something like this:



By the way, if you wanted a neutral some place, rather than wiring a switch loop you could pull two 12/2 cables down to the switch. Power in and out like a more conventional switching arrangement.
Understood, this is exactly what I need. Now I need to find a box that I can mount there for this. I dont think they make double gang boxes for switches. I was going to use those metal boxes with screws on the side that expands those flaps to keep the box secure inside sheet rock. Do you know if they make them? I dont want to use plastic boxes (I know plastic ones have it).

If I use something like a 4" box (the other thread), how do I mount that in sheet rock?
 
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Old 01-21-18, 06:37 AM
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You just need to buy two "gangable" 1-gang old work switch boxes and assemble it as one. The side panels are removable so remove one side panel on both of them and then screw them together. The ones you have already might have this.

 
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Old 01-21-18, 09:53 AM
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Thanks you are right, they do.

That being said I abandoned this entire idea in favor of using plugged LED wraps. I found one that is slighly more expensive but has its own sensor on it. Much more convenient to deal with and also its incredibly powerful (5000 lumens vs 2400 I was hanging before).

to make the switches work I would have to do tremendous amount of drywall cutting, fish taping (4 boxes plus all the holes to make the wires go). Its just crazy. With this I just moved my outlets closer to lights and i m done.
 
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Old 01-22-18, 05:10 AM
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Well after spending some time with the new setup, I m not happy how these self sensored lights work. Dont have the same range and sensitivity as the switches plus it doesnt look good when half the garage is lit. So i m probably going to go back to the old setup with two switches.

To make my install simpler it would be so much better if I didnt have to install a light fixture box and instead run the 12/2 directly inside the fixture and mount the fixture to the joist. Would this be a bad idea since conductors would be too close to the hot light source?
 
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Old 01-22-18, 09:35 AM
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I got the topgreener sensor that has the override. Much more cost effective and simpler to install. The only thing is it needs a neutral. I dont want to run a 12/3 wire as that would crowd the wiring in the receptacle where things originate. I d rather run 2 cables to the switch, one line and one load to first light.

just to confirm I will tie the neutrals of line and load together and add a pigtail which will go to the neutral terminal of the sensor.
 
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