SmartThings Community

Is there a "Cycle On-Off every x min:secs for z mins:secs" SmartApp?

(Craiginpa) #1

I was wondering if there is already a SmartApp that could be manually triggered to cycle an outlet/switch “on” for x mins:secs then “off” for y mins:secs and repeat for a total time of z mins:secs, starting the cycling turning it OoO (pick on or off), and ending leaving it OoO? (I could even include an one-time or repeating “autostart at time hr:min AM/PM” or sensor-triggered start if there was value to that.)

My intended main use is to cycle my almost-never-needed sump pump manually if ever needed until I can get around to replacing its float switch. (To replace the float switch I’d also have to break the radon system vacuum seal over the sump pit, so I’m putting that off until a bigger project to re-dig the sump pit deeper & wider next year.) The on/off cycling is necessary because the sump pit drains in 30-45 seconds and takes another 30-60 seconds to refill, and of course I’d want it to stop cycling after a while and have it be turned “off” at the end.

More common uses might be holiday lighting effects or long-lasting security warnings (without siren) or idunno, got more ideas?

I might not want to put in the time to make this since I don’t have a big need for it, especially if something similar already exists. But I cobbled together one SmartApp before and this idea put in itch in my brain to try doing another I ever find myself with time to throw at something.

in PA

(Eric) #2

in general I would not run a pump if it could be dry. That is usually bad for pumps.

Your sump fills crazy-fast in 60 seconds! but you never need it?

I think I’d rather have two pumps for different start levels. The higher one backs up the first, totally independent, and you can set an audible alarm, or smartThings notification that your backup pump is running so you’d better look at the primary pump to fix it.

(Craiginpa) #3

Yes, that is why I know from experience how many seconds it usually takes to drain the water level down to where it’d grab air rather than water. 60 seconds for the water level to rise again seems slow to me, not fast; I figured a proper depth would mean faster filling. (The reason it’s never needed is that the water never rises above the underside of my basement floor – it probably drains off elsewhere at that height. The only flooding, reportedly, was during a 100-year (one of a kind) fast storm, and most of that water seems like it must have been through a window well where there wasn’t proper drainage away from the house back then. My luck had held for 2.5 years and probably held for the prior owner for years.)

Sure a 2nd pump would be better, especially a 2nd wall in a complementary part of the basement, but the idea here is a $0 cost way enabling app-controlled pump activation if needed, not spending another $2000 on a 2nd pit & pump or even fixing what’s currently there when I have other priorities for my time. Or were offering to pay for it??? :wink:


(Eric) #4

sure I’ll pay for it… $$$$$ there you go. Don’t spend it all in one place.

$2000 is not close. $110 for cast-iron Liberty pump with the floatswitch built-in. Piping is PVC which you can do with a hacksaw. It’s easy.

anyway - good luck - don’t run it dry - and don’t run time schedules on SmartThings.

(Craiginpa) #5

Eric, I understood what you were thinking but $2000 is the price I was quoted by a couple of contractors to either add or replace a sump pit (including hardware). Current pit is too small (shortcut taken when townhouse development was built), so the only way to get it to work as well as a sump pit should is to fix it. Fortunately, as I said, it’s never overflowed so it’s a low priority compared to lots of other repairs I’m working on and dealing with my Dad’s heart failure & my own cancer.

(Mike Coscia) #6

I was looking to do something similar a few months back with my auxiliary pool pump, which sucks ground water out from under the pool. I was able to accomplish it with Rule Machine.

However, Rule Machine has been pulled and the code is no longer available. You might be able to do the same thing with SmartRules.

(Paul) #7

It’d be trivial to write you a smart app to do exactly what you’re asking, but sadly Smartthings schedules are just way too unreliable for this. Considering you could burn out your pump if ST missed a command, I wouldn’t even attempt it.

(Craiginpa) #8

Very good point, Paul. Yes, I’ve long suffered ST’s failing to turn lights on or off on schedule. They’ve improved so it’s not awful now, but even 1 in 10 or 1 in 20 missed “off’s” at the end could be a problem.