Chicken Coop

So, I just set up one of the most useful automations yet. I have been working on getting my workshop hardwired with an AP for Internet access - and along with that came automation of things within the shop using a second hub.

So, I decided to replace the old manual timer I had for the lights in the chicken coops with some automation. Chickens need at least 15 hours of light to lay at full production. I replaces the old timer with a Linear FS20Z-1 and set up some rules so that the light turns ON 30 minutes before sunset and then turns OFF 15 hours after sunrise. This gives them the amount of light they need in the coop without wasting power and having to reset my manual timer every month or so.

I just had to share this…


It definitely sounds useful, but I just want to make sure you’re aware of a couple of potential problems.

If the device handler can’t run locally or you’re not using Smart Lighting for the automation, it’s not going to run if your internet goes down.

The automation will probably work most of the time, but I’m sure there will be days where it either doesn’t turn on or off.

You may want to use a SmartApp, like the Simple Device Viewer, to monitor the device and send you a notification if it hasn’t had any events within a specific amount of time.

Oh, I am very aware of the potential issues. That is one of the reasons that I used the Linear relay since it has a button on the front to manually switch it on/off (besides the fact that it will carry an actual 20A load).

If I were using it to control the temperature of the brooders for the baby pheasants, then I would put way more safeguards in place (like alerts sent to my phone if a routine didn’t fire, alerts if a temperature was above a certain threshold, etc) and probably video surveillance to make sure the pheasant chicks were not huddling or panting…

As it is, I am sure the chickens (the layers) wont care if the light does not turn on once or twice. There is a lot more tolerance there.

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