View Full Version : OT: Motion activated dusk till dawn light controller

Jim Shaper
11-12-2009, 02:12 AM
I've got a pair of Cooper brand POS's that have been on my shop since it was built 2.5 years ago. I removed the motion circuit on the first one after about 6 months since it would do nothing but blink on and off all night.

Now the second is acting up and switches from low to bright for no reason pretty much all night, but only activates due to motion about 30% of the time. I'm sure this thing is driving my neighbors nutty, since it irritates me and it's on the other side of the house from where I can even see it (essentially theft deterrent lighting).

Anyone know of a brand of controller worth a darn? Price is only of moderate concern. I already wasted $100 on these ones.

Paul Alciatore
11-12-2009, 03:03 AM
A hundred dollars? I bought a motion controlled, two bulb fixture for my driveway for about $25 or $35 at the local home supply and it works great. It has adjustments so I can set the sensitivity and the delay. It has been up for several years and no problems yet.

Sorry, I don't know the brand. I would get the cheapest one at your local home supply and if it doesn't work, take it back and get the next one up. Repeat until you're satisfied.

Jim Shaper
11-12-2009, 03:16 AM
100 for the pair of them.

These lights are no less than 14' in the air. I don't feel like swapping them every 6 months when they fail - that's the whole point of this thread. I already found out the cooper mexican made ones suck, so now I'd like to find out from others which ones don't.

11-12-2009, 06:09 AM
If it is blinking on and off it is picking up it's own light. Re aim the light or shield the detector so it doesn't see it or a reflection of it from something.

11-12-2009, 06:12 AM
Zenith Secure home..

All these new ones.. well This is the second brand I purchased, the others were like $55 each.. BUT, as you drove by, the recommended spot light bulbs were glowing red.. meaning they had power on them.. it was supposed to extend the bulb life, but.. well.. it looked like embers of a fire and I had a half dozen people warn me, call the law, etc..

Solid state, well they sure don't work as well as the original relay jobs. I am old school pretty much and if it works for years and years, simple, leave it alone.

Being dependent upon voltage sensitive equipment than the utilities piping voltage spikes, brown outs and irregular supply.. well now.. Rough ride ahead, the utilities are not getting better results out the grid.

11-12-2009, 06:17 AM
Ohh.. and the OLD halogen lights I put up in 2001, well.. when the temperature starts changing, the wind starts blowing.. they come on and off at times.. rare.. but..

Then there is them feral cats. I bet there is 50 loose cats here again. My property has a half acre of woods on the west side. Snakes, cats. hawks, and mice? My shop has been over ran.

Jim Shaper
11-12-2009, 02:03 PM
If it is blinking on and off it is picking up it's own light. Re aim the light or shield the detector so it doesn't see it or a reflection of it from something.


The sensor was aimed away from the building out into space. The manual stated it was some kind of sensor failure response if it occurred more than 5 times. Well, it would do it for several hours, so I converted the back one to full manual.

Homie D has the zenith units right? I might try getting a new sensor module for the current problem child and see if that helps.

I like that there's a light on all the time at night, but I want the lower power setting so I'm not blasting the neighbors bedrooms all the time.

The cooper's flash so much (even just going from low to high) that the bulb life is terrible.

Bob Ford
11-12-2009, 06:52 PM
If the hot wire and the switch wire are interchanged. The light turns on and as soon as it starts it turns off. BLINK BLINK


Jim Shaper
11-12-2009, 07:24 PM
Nope, that's not what happened.

It worked for a couple months, then got possessed. I lost the package, didn't feel like buying a new one and return the old (old trick for exchanging bad merch), so I just removed the control. Having the motion sensor shut off on me while working in my junk pile was annoying too.

Your Old Dog
11-12-2009, 08:18 PM
I've never had good luck with that type of lighting. Had it on a garage and I swear in the winter time, the neighbors furnace chiminey would waft some fumes over my yard and the damn thing would trigger. Like you, I was concerned for my neighbors because if someone had a light flashing at my house I'd shoot it out.

I have a 300 W yardlight on the barn which turns on with the coming of darkness. However, I didn't want it on all night so I put a timer on it that allows it to come on between 5AM and 11:30PM. As soon as the sun comes up it shuts off.

If I could find an infrared switch that really worked for 100 pound targets I might consider putting another on up. If it was going on and off on squirrels or chipmunks then that would whiz me off.

Just for the record, I put up a violet/blue light outside to keep Unicorns away and I have to say it works great. We've not had one bit of damage to the schrubs since the bulbs been installed.