Turning on outside lights on at dark?


  #1  
Old 02-06-16, 07:14 PM
Q
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Turning on outside lights on at dark?

I want exterior lights around my house to turn on at dark every night. Unfortunately, they are all on different switches.

It looks like these are the three options:
1. Install photocells into each socket.
2. Install the Honeywell direct wired timer at each switch that can be programmed, based on lat/long, to activate at night.
3. Install a smart switch and use the app to schedule on/off.

Thoughts?
 
  #2  
Old 02-06-16, 07:30 PM
C
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Skip #1. The ones that screw in the sockets never end up aimed the right way, they raise the bulbs a lot, and they often cause flickering because of reflected light. The photocells that mount separately and can be aimed at the sky work fine, but are a bigger effort to install.

#2 works very well. I have two similar timers (not Honeywell) that automatically adjust for sunrise/sunset based on time zone, not L/L. You can add an offset to account for being at eastern/western edge of zone. I don't remember if they require a neutral in the box, but they might and that may be an issue for some.

#3 Is fine too, although the neutral issue is there for sure. Probably makes the most sense if you think you will add other controlled devices down the road. I don't think I'd bother for basic dark/dawn operation.
 
  #3  
Old 02-07-16, 09:43 AM
J
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I use #2 for two outside lights. No problems. Just works. Easy and done!

My limited experience with smart switches is that they are garbage. Maybe one day they will improve.
 
 

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