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Thread: Control low voltage landscape lighting with Caseta?

  1. #1
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    Control low voltage landscape lighting with Caseta?

    Hi all,

    I just wanted to get some information on using Caseta to control my low voltage landscape lighting. My landscape lights are Volt Lighting low voltage LED fixtures that are wired into a Volt Lighting transformer. I have 3 transformers that are all inside my house and plug into GFCI outlets. The transformers all have their own timers which work OK, but they all come on at different times despite being set to come on at dusk.

    I currently have the Caseta system and use it to control my outside lights that are hard wired into my home circuit breaker. These are porch lights, lights above my garage doors, etc. So that leaves me with 4 different timers that all come on at slightly different times. This is obviously not the most elegant solution and I'd like to get everything on the Caseta system.

    I was thinking of just using the lamp dimmers and plugging the transformers into them, but the transformers are all 3 prong plugs and the lamp dimmer only accepts 2 prongs. Would it be safe to use an adapter to make this work? Is there a better solution? Thanks in advance for your help!

  2. #2
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    First of all, do not use an adapter to convert 3-prong plugs to work with 2-prong receptacles, ever ever ever. This bypasses the equipment ground, designed to prevent electric shock.

    Anyway,
    I highly doubt your landscape lights are dimmable, so you'd want to install a switched outlet. Assuming this is in a garage or somewhere it doesn't need to be beautiful, I'd recommend you remove the existing outlet, install one of these extension rings, and install a Caseta switch and decora receptacle (don't cheap out on receptacles), finishing with this type of cover to finish it off. This is not nearly as simple as using a lamp dimmer, but it's the right way to switch an outlet and make everything safe and to code.


    Hope this helps!
    Evan Kirkhart- Home Electronics Solutions
    evan@homeelectronics.solutions

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  4. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by evankirkhart View Post
    First of all, do not use an adapter to convert 3-prong plugs to work with 2-prong receptacles, ever ever ever. This bypasses the equipment ground, designed to prevent electric shock.

    Anyway,
    I highly doubt your landscape lights are dimmable, so you'd want to install a switched outlet. Assuming this is in a garage or somewhere it doesn't need to be beautiful, I'd recommend you remove the existing outlet, install one of these extension rings, and install a Caseta switch and decora receptacle (don't cheap out on receptacles), finishing with this type of cover to finish it off. This is not nearly as simple as using a lamp dimmer, but it's the right way to switch an outlet and make everything safe and to code.


    Hope this helps!
    Thank you for taking the time to respond. You are correct, my landscape lights are not dimmable and the outlets are in my garage and in my basement. How hard will it be to add a switch to an outlet that doesn't already have one? I'd prefer not to tear my walls apart in order to achieve this.

    I'd love to see Lutron come out with a WiFi plug that is compatible with Caseta in order to more easily do stuff like this. There are so many of them out there and I think Lutron would have a hot seller if they made one.

  5. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by mummer43 View Post
    I'd love to see Lutron come out with a WiFi plug that is compatible with Caseta in order to more easily do stuff like this. There are so many of them out there and I think Lutron would have a hot seller if they made one.
    If you have a Google Home, Amazon Alexa, Homekit (or some other system that works with your other Caseta stuff too), just use that to schedule everything instead of the Caseta schedule. Then you can use whatever wi-fi plug you have, and have the other system turn both it and Caseta switched lights on at the same time. If you're using Homekit, make sure it's a Homekit plug, since most of them aren't.

  6. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by mummer43 View Post
    Thank you for taking the time to respond. You are correct, my landscape lights are not dimmable and the outlets are in my garage and in my basement. How hard will it be to add a switch to an outlet that doesn't already have one? I'd prefer not to tear my walls apart in order to achieve this.

    I'd love to see Lutron come out with a WiFi plug that is compatible with Caseta in order to more easily do stuff like this. There are so many of them out there and I think Lutron would have a hot seller if they made one.
    That's probably not going to happen. I would love to see the 15amp appliance module make it's way to Caseta, but it is still a differentiator for RadioRA.

    You could always go a minimal route of remodel. Take the existing outlet box and remove it. Make it a two gang (space) and install the caseta switch next to the plug. Wire the switch with constant power. Break the tabs on the outlet to separate the upper and lower outlets. Make sure the upper outlet has constant power, and use the Caseta switch to power the lower outlet. Plug the transformer into the lower outlet.
    Business Development Associate- Design, Sales, Installation, and Programming of Smart Homes for Baker Electric Home Energy
    mbalay@bakerhomeenergy.com
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  7. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by mmascari View Post
    If you have a Google Home, Amazon Alexa, Homekit (or some other system that works with your other Caseta stuff too), just use that to schedule everything instead of the Caseta schedule. Then you can use whatever wi-fi plug you have, and have the other system turn both it and Caseta switched lights on at the same time. If you're using Homekit, make sure it's a Homekit plug, since most of them aren't.
    I think the Homekit idea is worth exploring. Thanks for the tip!

  8. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by mummer43 View Post
    Thank you for taking the time to respond. You are correct, my landscape lights are not dimmable and the outlets are in my garage and in my basement. How hard will it be to add a switch to an outlet that doesn't already have one? I'd prefer not to tear my walls apart in order to achieve this.

    I'd love to see Lutron come out with a WiFi plug that is compatible with Caseta in order to more easily do stuff like this. There are so many of them out there and I think Lutron would have a hot seller if they made one.
    Didn't think of a HomeKit solution. If it's worth anything to you, adding a switch on the surface (like I described) would not be disruptive whatsoever to the walls, and rather straightforward (if not particularly beautiful).

    Glad you seem to have found a solution!
    Evan Kirkhart- Home Electronics Solutions
    evan@homeelectronics.solutions

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