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Thread: How to turn on garbage disposal

  1. #1
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    How to turn on garbage disposal

    I have several Caseta switches paired with Amazon Echo/Alexa and works great so far. Is there a way to get voice automation control for a garbage disposal?

    There is a switch on the wall which when you are in the middle of washing dishes you drip water all over the place walking over to turn it on. Real pain in the butt.

  2. #2
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    You will probably need a relay as most likely the garbage disposal uses too much power for a Caseta switch. There are other posts about using relays with suggestions of model numbers etc. you would have the caseta switch with a neutral turn on a relay that turns on the garbage disposal.

  3. #3
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    Hello Lukeetal, thanks for the reply. I am just starting with automation and not very familiar with a relay. Can you help me understand how this would work?

    I tried to google but I didn't come back with anything that make sense to me.

    Thank you.

  4. #4
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    Below is a semi universal way to setup a Caseta relay system.

    Need
    1. Single pole or two pole relay with 120v coil
    2. Short 3 prong 12 awg extension cord
    3. Caseta neutral switch
    4. Switch pico
    5. Pico wall plate
    6. 4" junction box, plates connectors, ground screw, wire strippers, wire nuts, Misc tools

    Installation summary.
    1. Bypass switch for the motor.
    2. Feed Caseta switch and input terminal of the relay.
    3. The Load side of Caseta switch feed the relay coil.
    4. Relay feeds cord out when the Caseta switch powers the relay coil.

    At the current switch location remove the two insulated wires connected to the switch. Splice them together so that the outlet for the motor is always on.

    Install a pico wall adapter and a pico switch over the switch box.

    Using a 4"x4" metal junction box, cut the extension cord in half and strip back 12" of the outer jacket only.

    Connect both green wires from the cut cord to the box, each other and the Caseta switch. Also the relay if applicable. These are the ground wires.

    Connect the white wires to the coil of the relay, Caseta switch, and cord out to the motor. These are the neutral wires.

    The power flows in from the black wire. It is our feed. We need to feed the relay twice. One feed passes power directly to the motor without it passing through the Caseta switch. The second feed passes through the Caseta switch when it is turned on and energizes the relay coil. When the relay coil is "pulled" in the power flows in and out of the relay. The caseta switch is controlling the feed to the relay coil.

    So connect the black to the "line" or input side of the relay and the line side of the Caseta switch.

    Connect the " load" side of the Caseta switch to the relay coil.

    Connect the black wire of the female extension to the load side of the relay.

    Plug in the extension cord and test, pair the Caseta switch or add it in the app, etc.

    Note that if you use a 2 pole relay you will have two unused terminals on the relay. I usually use RIB relays but they are a little confusing to select and explain how to wire because they have so many options. You need a relay rated 20amps or at 125% of the name plate on the motor.
    RadioRa2 PSP Level 2 Platiunum
    Caseta "Pro" Installer
    My Systems:
    RadioRa2 with QS Shades, Sonos, Harmony, Nest, Alexa and HomeKit
    Caseta with Harmony, HomeKit, Nest, QS shades, and Alexa.

  5. #5
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    Hi Lukeetal, cool idea! That is doable although its been a while since my engineering class. Would it be possible to get a circuit diagram of that setup? I found an enclosed SP 20A relay on Amazon. https://www.amazon.com/Enclosed-Rela...v+relay+switch

    So, if I understand correctly, you are putting a pico switch where mechanical switch used to be and putting a Caseta neutral where the old outlet is for the garbage disposal and wiring that into the relay and the garbage disposal?

    Question, what are your thoughts on having the mechanical switch in the "on" position and using a Wemo Insight plugin to voice activate? It wouldnt need a hub as it works directly with Alexa, although, I would rather stick to Caseta. I also looked into RadioRA2 as it supports the appliance on/off switches but RadioRA2 is way more than what I need.
    Electrical Rating120V/15A/60Hz/1800W, https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...C0SWRV6A2AWXG4

    Fun project and get a chance to learn something new. Thanks again for the help Lukeetal, look forward to seeing how to make this work.

  6. #6
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    The mechanical switch gets bypassed and removed so that the outlet always has power. Then plug the relay box which will house the relay and the Caseta switch into that outlet. The disposal plugs into the female end of the cord from the relay box.

    The relay you linked to should work.

    The idea behind what I am trying to describe is that the relay setup could almost be universal for anything with a cord on it.

    I have made a few in the passed years but I may make one up so I can post pictures for others.

  7. #7
    Just my two cents here:

    This is an interesting project in terms of how to integrate Caseta into an appliance-switching application. However, a garbage disposal, literally one of the few devices in your home that could permanently maim you if it comes on at the wrong time, is the last thing I'd want tied into home automation, especially voice control. Why not use a sink top switch instead?

    https://www.insinkerator.com/us/en/s...ch-dual-outlet

  8. Likes Lukeetal liked this post
  9. #8
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    @lukeetal
    Ok, seems easy enough to do, I'm going to purchase the relay and I'll probably have questions once I get it.

    @smart_home_guy:
    actually, I think this would make it safer. For example, it would be safer to say "Alexa turn on garbage disposal" then to have someone behind you flip the wrong switch on the wall without you knowing what is going on. The switch that controls the garbage disposal is behind you and right next to the switch that controls the dishwasher. So if someone were to flip the wrong switch while you were doing dishes, surprise!

  10. #9
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    Lukeetal, is there a different version of relay you would use or one you could specifically recommend?

  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by amrogers3 View Post
    Lukeetal, is there a different version of relay you would use or one you could specifically recommend?
    RIB part numbers always get me. The relay you linked to will work for up to 1 HP or horse power. I do not know off hand how many horse power your disposal uses. It may have a rating highly visible or on a tiny plate, failing that search on the model number. I worked up a little sketch and attached. it. With the relay you found you will end up with two extra wires. The 24v coil wire (White-Blue) and one of the NO or NC wires. I always mix up NO and NC. I believe the Blue wire is unused (NC normally closed) so that the Yellow and Orange only have continuity when 120v is applied to the coil wires, White-Yellow and White-Black. My drawing colors will not match the relay colors! If I have some time I will update it for this relay.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Caseta Relay.png  
    RadioRa2 PSP Level 2 Platiunum
    Caseta "Pro" Installer
    My Systems:
    RadioRa2 with QS Shades, Sonos, Harmony, Nest, Alexa and HomeKit
    Caseta with Harmony, HomeKit, Nest, QS shades, and Alexa.

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