Main Water Pressure Sensor


(LEWIS BUTTERY) #1

Hi:

I’m new here

I’m looking for recommendations for a sensor that can inform me if the water pressure coming into the water main shutoff has dropped or stopped

I am concerned about a leak with thousands and thousands of gallons of water going into my crawl space at my winter home while I am away 7 months of the year

I have the Smarthings hub - not installed yet and a variety of sensors and cameras

I just found out the Streamlabs monitor doesn’t use Z-wave but that it can communitcate to wifi on its own - no need for a hub

looking for any recommendations or considerations as I am new to IOT

Lew


(Allan) #2

The problem is a small leak wouldn’t be detected, only something that is a full open pipe would be. What about some leak sensors along with a shutoff valve?


(LEWIS BUTTERY) #3

Allan:

thanks, but not sure where they would be of any value ?

main comes up into a closet from the crawl space and goes to front of house then underground
probably 20+ feet of pipe down there

small leak would be an annoyance/problem but I’m more concerned with a “ton” of water and a huge water bill for the 7 months I am gone

I will be having someone eyeball the house once a week but still ?

Lew


(Allan) #4

A leak sensor simply detects the presence of water between two small metal contacts on the bottom, about a 1/4" apart. You can put them anywhere including in your crawl space although I would put it in a low spot where water would first start to puddle. Some leak sensors have a probe you can remotely mount also.

The problem with water pressure sensors is there arn’t any I’ve found with Z-Wave or ZigBee built in. As you linked there are water “meters” which I suppose you could use…you can set it to alert if there is water flow for more then a minute or two. But you’ll have to install it right after your main meter and even then you’d still have to worry about the flow meter or your main water meter leaking…if there were a leek before the flow meter you’d never know.

Leak sensors are the “easiest” way to do what you are looking for. The water valve would be to stop the water once a leak is detected to hopefully prevent any damage but if your not worried about damage and more just about a $1k water bill the leak sensor (or a couple) is all you need.


(LEWIS BUTTERY) #5

I plan to turn off the water main when I leave
that way there can’t be much water damage within the house if a pipe breaks

I plan to put a flow monitor before the main shutoff and from what I’ve read the
two I gave links for will notify if the pressure drops off
thus indicating a leak between the monitor and the street

the streamlabs monitor doesn’t need a hub - it connects to wifi direct

the other monitor does use z-wave

I’m wondering if there are any others out there

Lew


(LEWIS BUTTERY) #6

I decided to go with the Streamlabs Monitor

it doesn’t require cutting the pipes
it can work on a vertical pipe
it was on sale for $165

I wish it worked directly with the Smarthings hub
that would be one less app on the phone

I have everything installed and running
don’t have the monitor installed on the pipe yet
I can’t kneel - waiting for a friend to mount it

BTW: I did have a leak in the crawl space for over a month
old turn off valve on hot water tank
supposedly once the Streamlabs monitor is installed it will advise if there is
usage - even minor usage

my main goal is to know if there is a major leak

Lew


#7

Ibuttery:

This looks pretty cool. Have you inquired with the company if they have an API that can be used? If so, probably someone here could figure out how to make a custom device handler? Or, maybe use a “man in the middle” solution like a Raspberry Pi that could act at the intermediary between ST and the monitor.

I do have some questions about this. Can this be attached to one of the pipes near the water heater? I don’t have any other exposed pipe, other than outside…Also, unless I’m mistaken, anyone with a hot water recirculating pump will have “false” positives, as water is often flowing through the pipes. My solution to this when I was looking at another product that has not come to fruition on Kickstarter is to have the unit’s power turned off via a z-wave plug when “home” and turned on when “away…” When in “away” mode, the water pump would shut down and turn back on upon returning (this can easily be done via WebCoRE.)

I’m surprised this company hasn’t thought about integration with ST (or maybe they are working on it?) as they do have integration with Nest and Amazon Alexa.


(LEWIS BUTTERY) #8

Hi:

sorry I’m not interested in the API or doing any programming

the Streamlabs monitor, or any similar monitor should be attached to the main water line
generally it is placed AFTER the main shutoff value to monitor usage inside the house

I am installing mine BEFORE the main shutoff value so I can monitor for leaks in the crawl space

while I am away the main will be off - that way if a pipe breaks in the house the water damage will be limited to the water in the pipes - a few gallons

my concern is a leak in the crawl space that could gush thousands of gallons
while I am away

I have the Streamlab app running on my phone and will report back on its features
after I get the monitor installed on the pipe - waiting for a friend who can kneel …

Lew


(LEWIS BUTTERY) #9

UPDATE:

turns out the Streamlabs monitor won’t be able to monitor the crawl space piping for leaks
unless I mount it in the crawl space where the pipe comes in from the street or city meter

the water has to be BEFORE the pipes you want to monitor

the usual mount position is after the water main shutoff
this allows monitoring water flow inside the house
but my goal was to monitor the crawl space

I’ve decided not to mount the monitor in the crawl space
as I can’t go in there and won’t be able to see the lights
or press the reset button - if needed - etc etc etc
I would also have to add a power outlet nearby, in crawl or on first floor

I have decided to use a Smarthings Water sensor F-CEN-MOIS-1
I will place a plank under the piping from entry to water main shutoff
and have it slightly angled with plastic over it and the F-CEN-MOIS-1
at the bottom

if any leak develops the water should get to the F-CEN-MOIS-1

Lew