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Thread: Caseta ELV+ switch keeps popping breaker (PD-5NE)

  1. #1
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    Question Caseta ELV+ switch keeps popping breaker (PD-5NE)

    I've had this PD-5NE switch on a tape light attached to my awning (with transformer). Worked perfectly the past year+. The other day I added two more switches (one Caseta Dimmer and another PD-5NE) for two other lights, both on a different circuit. Now, my awning tape light doesn't work. I found the transformer breaker tripped. And it keeps tripping after resetting. Took all the wires out and double checked to make sure they were installed clean. Everything good. Checked tape light connections. Good. Changed out PD-5NE switch with new one. Set Phase to MLV (like the last one). Still not working. The PD-5NE indicator lights go up quickly, stop at top for 5 or 6 seconds, then descend slowly, before all 7 indicator lights are faintly lit. Then it recycles doing the same thing. Installed old school switch and the tape lights work fine, no tripping of transformer breaker (no dimming, of course). I only turned on tape lights a short time. Seems like the transformer is working, seems like the tape lights work, seems like the wiring is sound (based on simple toggle switch replacement). Suggestions? By the way, one of the new switches I added the other day is another tape light, with a PD-5NE switch. Works perfectly (after changing phase). I'm not an electrician so go easy on me.

  2. #2
    Lutron Technical Support
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    Hello Powerman and welcome to the forums!

    Does this transformer only trip when other devices are turned on (other dimmers, heavy appliances, etc.)? Could you try turning off all of the other circuits at the breaker panel (besides the one for the awning lights) and see if this transformer still trips? If it works well, try slowly introducing each circuit until it trips. Would you be able to swap transformers with the other location that is working well? Finally, what are the model numbers of the tape lights and their transformers?

  3. #3
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    [QUOTE=Brandon W.;46710]Hello Powerman and welcome to the forums!

    Does this transformer only trip when other devices are turned on (other dimmers, heavy appliances, etc.)?

    Thank you, Brandon, for weighing in. No, the transformer trips as soon as I return power to the PD-5NE and push in the FASS button.

    Could you try turning off all of the other circuits at the breaker panel (besides the one for the awning lights) and see if this transformer still trips? If it works well, try slowly introducing each circuit until it trips.

    I will try this maneuver. Unfortunately, the "problem" circuit does not have a breaker in the sub-panel inside the house (built 1997). As far as I can tell it's only this light switch and three electrical outlets nearby. I already tried disconnecting the three outlets, leaving the switch as the only load on this circuit (to the best of my knowledge). Did not solve the problem. I will turn off the entire sub-panel inside the house, leaving this circuit as the only one "likely active". Also, just occurred to me, I even tried to isolate the two new, working dimmers I installed this past weekend from the rest of the house electricity. I turned off the breaker for those switches, thinking it may in some way have affected the old PD-5NE with the tape light on the awning. Didn't do anything.

    Would you be able to swap transformers with the other location that is working well?

    Reticent to switch out transformers since the new one I installed this past weekend works beautifully on a different set of tape lights (connected to a new PD-5NE switch, I might add).

    Finally, what are the model numbers of the tape lights and their transformers?

    Both Tape lights are "illumaLED TASK lighting", see attached picture. The Transformer that keeps tripping, the original one, is the EMCOD EM200S24DC. The "new" transformer, the one I installed this past weekend, is the EMCOD ML100S24DC. See attached pictures.

    Lastly, an electrician friend of mine says it is pure coincidence that the old switch/transformer/tape light problem happened the same day I installed the new switch/transformer/tape light (on a totally different circuit). The old switch/transformer/tape light had worked flawlessly for the past year+. Everyone commented on how beautiful it is and the dimming capability is awesome.

    A couple of questions for you, (1) should I "factory default" the switch before moving forward? This as a brand new out-of-the-box PD-5NE switch I just put in so I don't see a problem with doing it. The lights on the side of the unit still work, but keep cycling up, pause, then down. Is that an "error code"? I'm worried that all the "fixes" I am trying will not give me success because this new PD-5NE needs to be "reset". (2) I was thinking of taking this new PD-5NE switch and swapping it into another light in my kitchen that has a transformer connected to it, using another PD-5NE to control it. That should tell me if this new PD-5NE is still in good working order? I'm afraid to put another new PD-5NE into my "problem" switch for fear of ruining another expensive PD-5NE. Is there a reason (or 20?) why the simple, single pole, old fashioned switch would work in the "problem" switch and the PD-5NE would not?

    Thanks Brandon!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails New, Working Transformer.jpg   Problem Transformer.jpg  

  4. #4
    Lutron Technical Support
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    Oct 2023
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    Powerman,

    (1) Although this is not a pre-programmed error code, this may be an indication of some error or fault the unit is experiencing, if it is exhibiting this behavior on its indicator lights. That being said, yes you may absolutely perform the factory reset on the device to see if it clears this discrepancy; the procedure for this can be found on page 119 of the following document:

    https://assets.lutron.com/a/document...structions.pdf

    (2) If the factory reset does not work, yes, we definitely suggest taking the "problem" PD-5NE and trying it in another location to see if the unit failed or not. If it works in the other location, it may be a cumulative incompatibility issue that developed between the PD-5NE and the original transformer. Some LED compatibility issues can take place over the life of the LED, not occur immediately, so that could be a possible explanation; since it is an MLV transformer, we can also recommend using the PD-10NXD model, as this is designed specifically for magnetic drivers and transformers.

    The single pole switch most likely works without issue because this is a simple open/close circuit interrupter switch, without any digital components, and the miscommunication is either happening with the presence of the dimmer or something to do with the digital nature of the smart device; this is not uncommon, as incompatibility-type discrepancies usually do not occur with on/off-only switches.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joy L. View Post
    Powerman,

    (1) Although this is not a pre-programmed error code, this may be an indication of some error or fault the unit is experiencing, if it is exhibiting this behavior on its indicator lights. That being said, yes you may absolutely perform the factory reset on the device to see if it clears this discrepancy; the procedure for this can be found on page 119 of the following document:

    https://assets.lutron.com/a/document...structions.pdf drift boss

    (2) If the factory reset does not work, yes, we definitely suggest taking the "problem" PD-5NE and trying it in another location to see if the unit failed or not. If it works in the other location, it may be a cumulative incompatibility issue that developed between the PD-5NE and the original transformer. Some LED compatibility issues can take place over the life of the LED, not occur immediately, so that could be a possible explanation; since it is an MLV transformer, we can also recommend using the PD-10NXD model, as this is designed specifically for magnetic drivers and transformers.

    The single pole switch most likely works without issue because this is a simple open/close circuit interrupter switch, without any digital components, and the miscommunication is either happening with the presence of the dimmer or something to do with the digital nature of the smart device; this is not uncommon, as incompatibility-type discrepancies usually do not occur with on/off-only switches.
    I cannot browse your link? Maybe broken?

  6. #6
    Lutron Technical Support
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    May 2023
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    121
    Hello trigas76,

    That link will take some time to load (138 pg. PDF). However, we are curious to see if that PD-5NE is truly staying in forward phase. Please try the following:
    - Factory reset the dimmer by following the instructions in the video here: Restoring a Caseta Wireless Dimmer to Factory Default - YouTube
    - Turn off the breaker powering this circuit
    - Disconnect the load wire from the PD-5NE leaving only the hot and neutral connected to the unit.
    - Restore power back at the breaker.
    - Please enter phase selection mode again and ensure it is properly reading forward phase:
    Click image for larger version. 

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    - Once the selection has been saved, please power down the circuit one last time.
    - Reinstall the load wire onto the dimmer.
    - Restore power and see how the dimmer performs.

    We look forward to your findings!

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