I just received my GE 12722 zwave on/off switch. Since my house wiring is very old, some of the runs only had two wires. What I have done in several previous successful installs of this switch in my house is run a neutral wire from a nearby power outlet. All switches seem to work perfectly. This one, as soon as I connect all the wires starts clicking and turning my lights on and off. I have tried reversing the wires (no activity). I have tried this switch in another socket (worked perfectly). I have tried running the neutral wire from another already installed switch (same clicking outcome). I blamed it on my florescent lights and old ballast, went to home depot and picked up a 120v 2ft strip that holds 2 T5 bulbs (same clicking outcome). Can anyone please help? Thank you so much.
I can be watching tv and a GFCI outlet will trip for no reason randomly.
Try removing the load wire from the switch. You won’t see the light on but the switch should still work by looking at the Status LED on the switch or the ST app. The clicking on/off is usually caused by wrong wiring between load and line hot or loose wiring. By doing this you eliminate 2 things. Faulty load or wrong wiring between load and line.
Your best bet is to just get a z-wave switch that doesn’t require a neutral. If you pull neutral from another switch, it can have unexpected voltage (return from a different load) that’s confusing the switch.
Keep in mind, however, that z-wave switches which don’t require neutral are always running a very small amount of power through the load (even when it’s off) in order to power the z-wave radio. That makes them unsuitable for LED lighting (which will illuminate or get flaky with the constant very low amperage.)
“borrowing” a neutral from another circuit is a very bad idea. Keep in mind how a full circuit looks: (items in parens describe wires. “Breaker” is the main breaker box or fuse box in the house.)
Breaker -> (hot / black) -> switch -> (load / black or blue) -> actual powered light or device -> (neutral / white) -> Breaker.
That’s one simple circuit, and you see that power flows across the neutral after returning from the powered device. If done in a single circuit, otherwise it can cause problems. (Yes, I know that neutral for all circuits eventually goes to a common ground… so it would make sense that all neutrals are equal. Sadly, like US politics, they don’t always “make sense.”)
Thank you for your response @Navat604 . I have tried this. The LED on the switch itself doesn’t turn on and the switch doesn’t turn the light on. If there is a problem with the wiring, how come a regular on/off switch works perfectly fine?
Thank you so much for your response @garyd9 . This is bad news for me. I wanted to keep all my switches same. I believe there used to be a GE Z wave on/off switch model that did not require a neutral wire, but I believe they discontinued it…my luck.
The smart switch requires line hot and neutral to power the internal circuitry in order to work. A regular switch has no circuit inside and all it does is physically cut out power when you flip the switch.
Because a regular on/off switch does not require a working neutral. It can be wired to just break the supply / load side of the circuit. They are two completely different animals. The new switch requires a neutral so it can sip power to run the electronics inside the switch and close the circuit electronically, vice mechanically (like a basic switch)
You will find A LOT of post about not having a neutral, and not being able to make it work. Like my house the neutral is in the overhead with the light fixture. I have a hot wire and load wire in the box. Which it sounds like you have since you are grabbing neutrals from the closest place. Grabbing neutrals from where ever changes the load on that neutral back to the breaker panel. Not a recommended practice. (@Navat604 if I’m way off please correct me! ) I’m not an electrician but I’m not sure how it works if you grab hots and neutrals that are on separate bus bars, or panels?
You should verify your wiring. If your connecting the line (verified hot) and an good neutral. The switch should power up. Look in the overhead if the neutral is in there. There is other Zwave switch options you can use to achieve what you want.
I know that doesn’t really help you, it’s hard to troubleshoot anything long distance. You Know the switch is still good since you said it works in another location. So it HAS to be your wiring / light.
Sharing the neutral is never recommended unless you know what you are doing. If you know the two line hot is out of phase. Meaning, measuring between the two line hot is 220v. Then it’s doable using the same neutral since both line hot is out of phase and the max current at anytime is 15amps or less. This is the standard for most new kitchen except they are also 20amps. Local code could varies of course.
Using 2 line hot (0volt measuring between the 2 line hot) with the same neutral wire. There is a chance there could be 30 amps going to your neutral wire which is rated for max 15 amps.
Also with older houses. There are plenty of leakages to ground which is a nightmare of CFGI breakers/sockets when sharing neutral.
Thanks (10 charl
I’m having the same issue with my GE/Jasco 12722 smart switch. House is less than 3 years old and the wiring is fine - has a line, load, and neutral. The switch has been working with no issues for the past 2 years, then we had an hour long power outage last night. When the power came back on the switch began clicking about every second and the lights would flash slightly in sync with the clicking. Tried flipping the breaker, turning the switch on and off, and pressing the z-wave button but nothing stopped the clicking. Has the switch gone bad?
Nick- did you ever find a solution to the blinking light switch problem. Had the same power loss scenario last night. Thanks for any insights.- VitoR
Nick/VitoR - any answer, I just had the same issue - power flicker, now clicking on/off.
No borrowed neutral in my setup. Switches have been working fine for 2 years. Any other ideas?
Press and hold ON and for 2 seconds then let go. If it’s staying ON after letting go of the switch then it’s a defective switch.
Thanks. Turns out to be 2 blown switches. I happened to have a spare
which works on each individually. Still not exactly sure what caused the
issue - they were both on the same 4-gang box, both issues started
together, around the time of a power flicker. The other 2 smart switches
on same gang are fine.
For anyone else with the problem, note that the two blown switches each had
-1 just stopped working, the little blue LED started blinking
-the other turned on/off continuously, with the audible clicking noise with
I had the same issue as Nick yesterday after a power flicker and long power outage. The light is working now (at least for now). I don’t know if all these steps were required, but here’s what I did:
- pulled the air gap and turned off the breaker for about 15 minutes;
- started a z-wave repair;
- when the z-wave repair finished, I turned on the breaker;
- pushed in the air gap - the switch continued to click and turn the light on and off;
- I held the “on” switch until the light turned on (quite a number of seconds); left the light on…didn’t turn it off;
- performed another z-wave repair;
- then, my switch/light began to operate normally.
- for all I know, performing a rain dance while singing opera might achieve the same outcome