Outdoor Post Light Timer


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Old 11-10-18, 08:54 AM
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Outdoor Post Light Timer

I have a series of outdoor post lamps that are run off a timer located in my garage. The timer is a mechanical one in an outdoor enclosure and has recently stopped turning lights off correctly. Not sure what the issue is since it seems to be running properly but the pins are not turning the lights off. The pins are correctly set according to the chart in the timer, which has been in my garage for at least the 19 years I have been in the home. If I replace the timer, what type of timer would be an appropriate replacement. I assume since the timer is actually not outdoors I don't need a box with an outdoor metal enclosure.<img src="https://images.homedepot-static.com/productImages/c264c90f-8b9c-4bf4-b8a6-aa9f2abbeb00/svn/metal-indoor-nema-1-enclosure-tork-timers-1101b-64_1000.jpg" width="1000" height="1000"/>
 
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Old 11-10-18, 09:43 AM
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That is a standard timer and replacement mechanisms are available.

Can you hear if the motor is running? Does the time wheel move during the day as it should? Can you turn the lights ON/OFF with the manual levers (below the time wheel)? If you move the time wheel manually do the levers engage and move the manual levers on and off?

If the lights come on but don't go off automatically or when turning the time wheel manually, the OFF pin might be loose or not aligned. See if it needs to be tightened or move it slightly to a different time.

You say that the lights do not go off correctly. Is the wheel set for the correct time-of-day? Current time should be at the "Time" triangle near the ON manual lever.
 
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Old 11-10-18, 12:07 PM
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I have used this timer for 19 years and changed the pins and wheel for daylight savings time so all the settings are correct. Yes, I can manually turn on and off with the levers. Yes, the motor is running. But it looks like the time is getting stuck - sometimes it is moving and sometimes it isn't I just checked it now and it was stuck at 11 pm. I cycled through and made sure it tripped the levers at the set times which it did, and I reset the correct time. I assume when I check it later it will be off on the time, so while the motor is running the time dial is not operating correctly from what I see.
 
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Old 11-10-18, 01:36 PM
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The motor could be failing and stopping intermittently or when it meets with resistance (of the pins hitting the levers.) Take the pins off and see if the wheel continues to turn. Even if it does you may have to replace the mechanism.

Here is is at HD: https://www.homedepot.com/p/TORK-40-...109A/303981916

The new guts should fit into the existing box so you won't have to remove the old box and wiring.
 
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Old 11-11-18, 08:07 AM
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Thanks for the advice. Is that link for the entire switch including the enclosure? Wouldn't I just need to replace the motor? Granted, the price difference between what you linked to and the motor isn't that big, I'm just curious.

https://thd.co/2qDM6XY
 
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Old 11-11-18, 08:18 AM
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Sure, if the motor is at fault you can just replace it.
 
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Old 11-11-18, 08:44 AM
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For the cost of the parts I would just replace the entire mechanism with a photo electric switch and skip having to ever set the timer, comes on when dark, shuts off when light!
 
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Old 11-11-18, 09:14 AM
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Wouldn't the mechanism need to be mounted outdoors for a photo-electric switch to work? Mine is mounted in my garage. I do agree that for the few extra dollars it probably makes sense to to replace the entire mechanism. I just wanted to make sure I understood which parts were likely the ones failing before I replaced things. And I'm still curious if the original link to the full mechanism included the box itself - that's what it looks like on the product page.
 
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Old 11-11-18, 10:56 AM
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original link to the full mechanism included the box
Yes that link is for the complete unit. The interior comes out easily and can replace the one you have. I don't know if the interior unit is available alone. As you found the motor can be replaced separately.
 
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Old 11-11-18, 12:45 PM
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You may want to consider going solid state and remove the mechanical timer. The Intermatic ST01C is my go-to choice of timers. It is digital and fully programmable including time zone information for automatic time shift. You could replace your timer with a 4" square electrical box and decora trim ring. Many of the home improvement stores as well as any electrical supply carry them.

ST01C spec and wiring sheet (PDF)
 
 

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