Need help with installation of Evolve LRM-AS and LTM-5


#1

I’ve read the other posts about the association and the Minimote so that will basically be the next step. The help I need is really just the wiring of both switches. Not sure why but the wires that are currently there now seem to be wired a little funny. See link for photos:

https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/106997844651190158399/albums/6072139785216627393

The left switch is a three-way light switch, middle is the one I’m trying to replace with the LRM-AS and LTM-5 at the other switch, and right switch is a single light switch. If you look closely, it seems as if the switch I’m trying to replace is using wires from two separate three-wires. I’ve wired the LRM-AS according to the included instructions but it isn’t working. Thinking maybe my switch was defective, I installed it on a single switch and it worked fine. This may be very elementary but any help would be appreciated.

Thanks.


Linear 3 Way Led Dimmer
#2

I will try to help. Unfortunately your photo isn’t coming through - Google is giving a 500 error and saying to try again later.

I have done several three and four way switches in my house (few more to go) using the Linear branded switches, which are identical to the evolves.

My first suggestion is to put the instructions asside and ignore them for now. Key is to focus on what the wires are in the wall and not the expected wiring per instructions.

What you need to identify is which wire is which. If you wiring is like mine, it isn’t always clear. For starters, you should be able to identify the common/white wire pretty easily. Next you need to identify the load wire and the hot wire.

While you probably already know how to use a volt meter, I will make the assumption you do not. Power off, separate all wires. Now turn power back on and use meter on AC mode. Touch black cable from meter to ground (or white common). Please note that you may have multiple white wires in the box. If you have separated them, if may be easier to touch black meter cable to ground. Now touch the red cable to the various black cables. One should show up with voltage of 120v. That is your live/hot wire. Keep track of it (I used pen/paper…to help my memory).

Now the tricky part. Where is the load wire. Load wire is the one that is going to the light(s). One 4 way switch, the load and hot were in separate boxes from where I expected. Easy way to test for load is using volt meter and using continuity mode. In this mode if you touch the two cables together, you will get a beep. Now touch one end of meter to light socket and other to wire in box. You may have to test several as well as adjust what part of socket you are touching in light. When you get signals you found the load wire.

If your light is like one of mine and is a chandelier on an 18 foot ceiling, above option not doable. Lucky for my I was still able to reach chandelier. With friends help, I had him touch meter from ground to one of the suspected load wires in ohm mode, which measures resistance. Measureing this way, you are going from ground into light across bulbs and down into the load wire. As friend was monitoring how much resistance, I started taking light bulbs out (10 bulbs total). We immediately saw the resistance change.

Now you can grab the instructions and verify which wires go to where.

This should get your main switch working and you can now turn power on and test it.

Now move in to the additional (3 and 4 way) switches. These switches no longer need a travel wire. Most times I capped mine off (cap on wire then electrical tape to ensure stays in). One switch I had to hijack the travel wire to bring power from the hot/live wire across. You see, the accessory switches don’t need a travel wire, don’t need a load wire, and physically don’t need to be connected in any way to the main switch you installed above. All they need it a live wire, a common (white) and a ground.

Most of my accessory switches were easy to install once I figured out where the load wire was. Only one point, as mentioned above, did I find no power at the accessory switch, so used the travel wire (wire that runs from one box to the next) to pull power across. Other ones already had power or there was another switch in box I stole power from (ties the wire to it’s hot).

Once installed, make sure you tie them into ST before using remote to associate the accessory switches to the main switch to create a virtual 3 way. Once done, you will be very happy with how they work.


#3

Thank you for your response Malathan. I’ve posted my pictures on Photo Bucket to share. Sorry for this, this may have made it a lot easier. The red should be the live/hot and black should be load wire. My issue here is that it seems as the wiring was wired differently in a 3-gang box. Hopefully you can see the pictures now, it seems as if the neutral (white) and live (red) wire (of the three wire) run to the switch that I’m swapping for the Evolve LRM-AS but the load (black) goes to a common load connection (connected to two or three other load wires). A separate load (black) wire runs to the switch with the neutral (white) going to a common neutral connection.

Hopefully the pictures work now. If not, maybe there is a way I can send you the photos. I think the photos will clarify a lot. Thanks again.


#4

Thank you for the help. Using the multimeter and voltage detector, I’ve found that the white wire is the load and the black is the line/hot. I’ve connected the blue (LRM-AS) wire to the load (white, as found by continuity mode), black (LRM-AS) to line/hot. I’ve capped the red traveler wire and connected the ground wire. The next question now is what do I do with the white (neutral) wire that comes out of the LRM-AS?


#5

For starters, I am assuming this switch is a 3 way (with another switch connected via travel wire)…

  • Black line as hot sound right.
  • White as load is odd, but have seen odder things (wiring in my house). I think some electricians are color blind and use wrong colored wires.
  • Red should be travel wire. See if you can verify this by connecting meter to other switch’s

I am taking guess that maybe the white is not the load (you may be right since you have the meter in hand). But very odd that white is used for anything but common.

Suggestion: Go to other switch on 3-way and test it’s wires. it could be that this switch doesn’t have the load wire in it. This occurred in one of my boxes. If this is the case, you may reconsider where you put your main (dimmer) switch (LRM-AS) and the accessory switch (LRM-5).

One way to verify the white is common is to measure between hot and white. you should get 120v. If the white truly is load, I would exp 0 (maybe…could be wrong…now second guessing myself… maybe need to test on switch here and report back).

  • fyi…Evolve switches are the same as Linear, just rebranded. You can pick the Linears up from newegg for $31 each (saves a few dollars). Try their premium service for 30 days, get free shipping, then cancel service if you decide. How I ended up with 30+ switches to do entire house (still installing them…if you want to come help).

#6

Thank you @Malathan, I ended up having to pull another hot wire over but now it all works.


(Justin Wurth) #7

First and foremost these are wired very different than a regular 3 way switch. There is no common wire that you will run.

How to set these up. A 3 way can be setup in a number of different ways. The most common is to have line and load going to the master switch and then line load and a common going to a third switch with either the light in-between or after the other switch(es).
This light switch is completely different. You will run line and load to LRM-AS. This will control the light directly. The common wire will not be needed. You will branch the line and load to both the LRM-AS and LTM-5. The LTM-5 does not control the light at all. It actually wirelessly controls the LRM-AS through z-wave. To get this properly negotiated with STs you need an aeon minimote to associate the two switches together. I have a 3 way and a 4 way all setup like this and it works wonderfully. The wiring is just very different as the common wire is useless as the switches communicate over z-wave.


(Rishi Sanyal) #8

Thanks very much for this. What I haven’t found in all these posts is a description that works for my (new) home’s wiring, which appears to always split up the line and load into separate junction boxes for 3 and 4 ways. For my home, if you put the dimmer in the box with the line hot (not the load), you need to actually still use the travelers in a 3-way with the Linears. Because you need to carry the line hot from one box (dimmer) to the other (accessory, connected to load), and you have to still connect the load to the dimmer via the other traveler. In other words, both travelers are used - one to carry power from line box to load box, the other to connect the load to the line box/dimmer.

I guess that’s why many suggest putting the dimmer in the load box, but even that requires the use of a traveler to carry power from the line box to load box. In this config you drop one of the 2 travelers.

Frankly, it’s a bit unfortunate that the Linear instructions don’t tell you any of this. The GE and Leviton dimmers/switches provide far more useful instructions, though they can get confusing as well.

One question I have that I can’t seem to get an answer to: with the Linear dimmer and accessory switch, once you’ve paired them to ST and associated them using the Aeon minimote, will both switches work if I remove the ST hub?

Like say when I move out of this house one day?

Thanks,
Rishi


(DavidK) #9

@sarangiman
Your second paragraph issue I agree with.

For the 3 ways I have wired the actual locations for the load switch and aux switch were determined by where the power actually enters. Otherwise the load switch when off turns off the Aux switch.

In my house only one set of 3 ways had neutrals in both boxes. The other 2, 3 ways only had neutrals in the box that did not have the power entering it. In that case I used the traveler to send neutral over to the other box to wire up the load switch.


(Rishi Sanyal) #10

Thanks. Makes sense. Any idea if these Linears will talk to one another without any Z-wave hub at all? Would rather install something I can leave behind for the next owner.

Thanks,
Rishi


(DavidK) #11

@sarangiman
I guess someone could do a test. Turn off the hub, take out batteries and remove power and then see if the linears still talk to each other.

I do not think the load switch cares. You can pair a linear aux switch to ANY z-wave device. I have one 3-way set in which the load device is a GE zwave switch because I got it for $10 from Home Depot. It was actually a 3-way set for $10 but I cannot use the ge aux switch because they require both a neutral and a traveler. I have to use the traveler for sending over the neutral.


(Rishi Sanyal) #12

The GE’s are hard wired so work perfectly fine even if they’re never paired to any hub whatsoever.

So what I’m wondering is if the Linears behave similarly. They’re the only ones I know of that don’t talk to one another (dimmer and accessory switch) directly using wires.


(DavidK) #13

@sarangiman

Okay, it seems like it works, I did a test.

I did not want to mess with the power and removing the batteries tonight;

So what I did is issue a reboot command to the hub, while it was rebooting and everything else was not being triggered, I could control my three way from the aux switch.

But along the the same concerns, hard wired ge switches you would think should always work.

But Is it possible that after loss of power or an extended lose of power or something would/can the linear switches lose the 3 way association.

We once had a several day lose of power after hurricane sandy.


(Rishi Sanyal) #14

Thank you so much for doing this and reporting back! Much appreciated. That’s good to hear. I decided to try the Leviton DZMX1-1LZ, and if it didn’t buzz with my halogens, to just go with that and its accessory switch since it’s all hard-wires. Well, it doesn’t buzz, so just going with that.

I’m using all Leviton VRE06-1LZ dimmers for most of my home with LEDs, as they’re literally the only dimmers of 10 or 15 I’ve tried that don’t cause any LEDs (and I’ve tested 15 different types or so) to buzz or flicker.

So I guess there’s something to be said for consistency - all dimmers/switches in my home are now the same. Same level of absolutely horrid ergonomics, that is. The Levitons are literally the worst dimmers ergonomically I’ve ever tried. They’re mushy, you can’t tell when you’re pushing the bright/dim buttons, there’s no haptic ‘snap’, even the main button sometimes acts oddly and not ‘crisp’ on some units. Wish I could have all Lutron dimmers but no Z-Wave, so.

Someone really needs to tell Leviton how terrible their design is haptically though. I’ve heard it said by others here (low WAF), but I didn’t realize how bad it was until I tried it. Still, I’ve had to go with it b/c their ELV dimmers are the only ones I trust with LEDs to not cause any sort of buzzing whatsoever. All other dimmers fed some EMI back into my lines.

Please excuse the tangent. Anyway, thank you!
Rishi


(DavidK) #15

@sarangiman

I also tried resetting a breaker on one set of 3-way and they still worked.

Also, according to a 10 second Google search these kind of devices do have some non-volatile memory so a power loss should not cause them to lose the association.

Hmm, as far as your other comments, should I worry about EMI being sent onto the lines?

Relative to incandescent and halogen dimming led’s suck.

But I am hoping that led technology is still being improved and will slowly get better.