LED bulbs - work with X-10 ?

I have an older assortment of x10 modules. Obviously, they work with incandescent bulbs, but not so well with CFLs. (I did buy 1 of the new appliance modules with no local control and that does work with the CFL).
Anyone know if the LED bulb would work with an old fashioned lamp module? And would it be the dimming function work with them? With the LED prices getting better, it might be cheaper to buy those than to buy new appliance modules.
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wrote:

Can one dim an LED? Two ways to dim that I know of, put a resistor in series with the lamp, or turn the lamp off part of the time while applying full voltage the rest of the time. Or with incandescent, put a diode in the circuit.
What does X-10 do? If it has only one level of dimming, it's probably a diode. I don't think a diode will dim another diode, even a Light Emitting Diode.
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wrote:

Dimmers usually work by turning the power either on or off at differing points on the sine wave - and they DO make dimmable LEDs - they are a bit more expensive than the non-dimmable ones (which will just flash if you attempt to dim them)
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On Thu, 19 Dec 2013 17:49:04 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

The cheap LED rope lights dim just fine in a regular Triac dimmer. Never tried a high dollar bulb.
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micky wrote:

That makes no sense. There is no "lamp", an LED *is* a diode.
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wrote:

Not sure if they will work, but the dimming function would ONLY work with "dimmable" leds
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CFL's and led supplies put out so much trash, surprising anything would work.
Greg
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On 12/19/2013 4:13 PM, Lee B wrote:

LED bulbs, even dimmable ones, will NOT work with a two wire (no common) X-10 switch because the switch works by continually sending a small amount of current through the circuit when the light is off. This will cause the LED bulb to flicker when it is in the off mode. Only the type of X-10 switches that will work with CFLs will work with with LEDs.
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On Thursday, December 19, 2013 11:29:22 PM UTC-5, Marilyn & Bob wrote:

+1
Someone finally answered the actual question, kind of. But he actually asked if it will work with the basic X -10 lamp module, which isn't a switch. Those have a neutral available, so powering it isn't a problem, but they are still only rated for use on incandescents or similar resistance loads. CFL, LEDs etc have transformers which are not pure resistance loads. You can use an X-10 appliance module, but it won't have dim capability. A regular X-10 module isn't rated to work, it might work if he's lucky with some LED's. But even if it does, how long it will last is anyone's guess, because it's not designed to switch inductive loads.
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Would adding an incandescent light like you do when using an appliance module with fluorescent tubes help in any way?
I had to add a small "Christmas candle" off an X-10 module so the fluorescent shop light wouldn't turn off immediately after the motion sensor turned it on.
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On Friday, December 20, 2013 11:35:41 PM UTC-5, DerbyDad03 wrote:

Maybe. If what you're saying is that you did that with a standard X-10 incandescent only module and it worked for a fluorescent, then it may work for an LED too. They are designed for resistance loads and the more a load looks like a pure resistance, the more likely it would be to work. How long it lasts might be another issue. It all depends on the design, which we don't know anything about, except that it's cheap, likely made in China, etc....
Given that the world is moving to LEDs, you would think that if the basic X-10 module could be used with them, that they would say so. The real problem with X-10 is that AFAIK, at this point, nothing is being invested in any new products, nor has there been for years. What you have is cheap and OK for some simple applications where good reliability isn't needed. IDK enough about the state of other contenders today to make any recommendations. Perhaps if Lee posts more about the overall application, some others can make suggestions.
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...snip...

I'm using an RR501 transceiver module with an MS14A motion sensor.
http://www.thehomeautomationstore.com/ms14a.html

Trust me, I know all about the unreliability of X-10! My dad was looking for a setup to control some outside lights. I bought a bunch of X-10 stuff to test at my house before installing it at his and was very disappointed. The motion sensors would turn the lights on but sometimes they wouldn't turn off for hours at a time. I'd come home from work in the bright sunlight to find the lights on even though everything was set to only work after dusk. The thing is, it wasn't consistent so it was really hard to troubleshoot. I also experienced other strange symptoms when the modules were plugged into GFCI receptacles. There was no way I would saddle my dad with an inconsistent, unreliable lighting system.
I eventually took most of it out and installed standard fixtures with their own motion sensors. I left one setup installed which, for the most part, works fine. I put a motion sensor just inside my shop door and have an RR501 controlling a 4' shop light. It's just so I can some light in the area when I come in through the back door where there is no convenient switch. It works fine 95% of the time but it's not a critical set up. That's the one where I had to add the Christmas candle to get it to work properly.
In fact, I just paused putting this post together and did another test. I have 3 areas of Christmas lights in the house. I just plugged 3 RR501 transceivers into the 3 receptacles and tried to use an MS14A as a remote. The 2 RR501's on the living room circuit *sort of* worked but the one on the kitchen circuit will only turn off, never on. Plug the same RR501 into a living room receptacle and it works, sort of. By sort of I mean that 100% of the time the RR501's will turn off with the remote but they only turn on about 90% of time. I tried different channels and house codes but the inconsistencies were consistent.
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Christmas lights X10 update!
I got all three lighting areas to work off of one MS14A "remote". The kitchen problem appears to have been caused by the fact that the receptacle I was using was protected by a GFCI. I should have realized that because I had that same problem in my garage. I ran an extension cord from a receptacle in my office, plugged the RR501 into that and it all works fine - for now.
One button to control three sets of lights around windows and doors plus the 1000+ Christmas tree lights. I'm a happy camper - for now.
We'll have to wait to see if it keeps working for the next few weeks.
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On 12/21/2013 01:16 PM, DerbyDad03 wrote:
[snip]

I use a few X10 modules now. I used to use a lot. To avoid collisions, I would try to make sure no 2 (or more) X10 transmitters were active at the same time. This would produce unwanted "hybrid" commands (for exambple, B1 sent at the time as P7 could lead to B7 being seen instead. Adding X10 motion sensors (unpredictable transmitters) made this difficult situation impossible. I went from nearly everything in my house on X10 to just a few things because of such problems.
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On Saturday, December 21, 2013 1:30:31 PM UTC-5, DerbyDad03 wrote:

I remember you asking about the turning on an outside light application years ago and I was one of those that suggested X-10 as a possible solution. I had used X-10 for turning on lights outside a garage on a motion sensor and for turning on porch lights at dusk. It worked OK for that and still does. I'd say it's about 95% effective, but as you say, sometimes it won't turn the lights out or on.
But after that, I used it to turn on and off some floor lamps, randomly, when I'm away. I got that working too. Then somehow about a year later, one of the lights suddenly stopped working. I tried swapping modules that worked, different codes, different outlets to the extent possible, etc. I couldn't get it to work again on the same outlet that it had worked on for a year, nor another nearby outlet. That is the most bizarre X10 thing I've seen. And there was nothing electrically new added to the house, ie no new TV, appliances, moving anything around, etc that could account for interference.
Another aspect of X10 is that outlets can be on either hot leg. If the transmitter is on one and the receiver on the other, then the signal has to go all the way to the street transformer or a 240V load that is on to make it to the receiver. One trick to try to see if that is the problem is to turn on an electric oven and see if that helps make it work. If that is the problem, you can put a cap between the legs that is supposed to bridge the signal. I also found modules that not only do that, but also re-transmit the signal at a greatly amplified level. But they were pricey and given that it was clear X-10 really wasn't going anywhere, I just gave up on expanding it beyond what I'm using it for now.
I'm glad you found some use for the X-10 anyway. If you asked the same question today, based on my later experiences, I would have given you an answer with all the potential problems. I'd still say it's OK for some basic apps, but not if you want high reliability or a system that can span a house and work almost everywhere.
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On 12/19/2013 13:13, Lee B wrote:

Plug-in x10 modules (both dimmable lamp modules and relay switched appliance modules) have a feature that enables the user to turn on the device locally by flipping the switch off then on in a rapid sequence. Some CFL lights constantly trigger this power-on feature. The solution I found is to have a small resistive load (night light) in parallel with the CFL. I haven't tried x10 modules with LED bulbs yet.
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