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Thread: Yet another Heating newbie - FS20 Solution question

  1. #1
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    Default Yet another Heating newbie - FS20 Solution question

    Hi,

    I'm yet another newbie, looking to automate my central heating system. I think I would like to use some of the components of the HouseHeat system (FS20) - but possibly in a different way to others.

    My starting point is that I don't have TRVs of any description on my rads, and I have a simple manual timer on my boiler, with no room thermostat at all.

    So, phase one would be to replace the manual timer with something that can be wirelessly controlled, prior to doing any re-plumbing of rad valves, etc.

    I have read about the FHZ1300, and the boiler control FHT8W units and, since I am in IT, I would be comfortable with putting FHEM together, running on a Sheevaplug or NSLU2 to do the controlling.

    What I'm unclear about is: can I directly control an FHT8W from an FHZ1300? I know most people start by adding a number of room thermostats (FHT 80B) and associated TRV controllers, and linking them to the boiler control. In this case I gather that the boiler control receives messages directly from the thermostat and decides if boiler is required. However, in my case, I would be looking to initially simply use timing based logic (replacing what I have with my manual clock), and then proceeding to temperature sensing/zoning, and TRVs in later phases. So, I would be looking to use the boiler control in a dumb mode of just responding to "On" and "Off" messages directly from the FHZ1300.

    Can anyone tell me is this a runner, or have I completely misunderstood what's possible with the FS20 based system?

    Many thanks,
    John.

  2. #2
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    You could try a Honeywell Wireless Programmable Room Thermostat pack that comes with either the BDR91 / HC60NG relay module to switch the boiler on / off. You could then attach their Evotouch Controller and HR80 TRV's when ready. I am sure that you could also use some of their other units to achieve the same effect.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the Honeywell suggestion, but I think I want to stick to the FS20 protocol.

    I guess my question boils down to this:

    Can I directly control an FHT8W Boiler Control from either a FHZ1300 or CUL device?

  4. #4
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    Sorry can not help you with that question (I was going to go a similar route to your end solution but swapped to Honeywell when I discovered their flexibility for zoning etc). The 2 Honeywell Evotouch controllers were easy to set up for 20 radiators / 16 zones.

    Is the NSLU 2 the Netgear slug? If you are in to your programming some of the other automation threads on this forum have guys who do a lot of their own automation programming and may be able to point you in the right direction. I do suspect that it will mean a change from Househeat
    Last edited by jwxfs; 3rd November 2011 at 07:06 PM.

  5. #5
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    Hi,

    Yes NSLU2 is the famous slug! I want to run FHEM on a device such as this or a plug computer with an attached CUL device which can control FS20 devices in the home.

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    @jpearce did you get sorted? My FHT8W shows on my web interface with a radio button to turn it on / off but I've a feeling it is only able to report state rather than be controlled directly.. happy to test for you if your question is still unanswered?

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    Quote Originally Posted by NickC View Post
    @jpearce did you get sorted? My FHT8W shows on my web interface with a radio button to turn it on / off but I've a feeling it is only able to report state rather than be controlled directly.. happy to test for you if your question is still unanswered?
    Hi NickC,

    I went with a different solution for my phase 1 (boiler control). I've got FHEM, running on a Sheevaplug, giving commands through a CUL to an FS20 live switch (instead of an FHT8W), which is controlling switched live to my boiler. Works like a dream - I can control directly, via web or an android app I wrote, or automatically through the time/temperature based logic I have running on the plug.

    Thanks for the offer of help though!

    jpearce.

  8. #8
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    Hi JP
    What a relief to get someone willing to talk FS20 in English in 2012 thank you very much I'm a bit stalled on my heating home automation at the moment due to total lack of knowledge in terms of how to get FHEM to graph room temperatures and unfamiliarity with linux generally which means I don't really understand the right log defiitions to make in my config file.

    Any code or advice you are willing to share would be gratefully received - I'm running FHEM server on a win 2k laptop using strawberry perl and CUL plus CUL RFR to try to reach all rooms but not convinced that's working. Also for info in case you haven't come across them I'm running 5 x jogglers (native ubuntu based O/S) to distribute my media library mainly for audio using squeezebox server and squeezeplay clients.

    if you are willing to help my email address is "nick" with (the chamberlains dotbiz)after the @sign.

    all the best

    Nick

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    If anyone is interested, I have some graphs up on my blog which show stats from my FHEM installation.

    Heating in the bedrooms is a bit erratic at the moment due to a faulty TRV - I have to use the supplied head (and not an FHT actuator) and keep it set to 5 to stop it knocking. Consequently, it gets heat whenever any other room is asking for it (i.e. downstairs) and the FHT room stat fights to control the temperature (but of course fails miserably). Hopefully I will get this sorted soon.

    Blog is at http://www.cpmills.com/ Heating graphs can be accessed through the tab at the far top of the page.

    Chris

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    Quote Originally Posted by fredd500 View Post
    If anyone is interested, I have some graphs up on my blog which show stats from my FHEM installation.

    Heating in the bedrooms is a bit erratic at the moment due to a faulty TRV - I have to use the supplied head (and not an FHT actuator) and keep it set to 5 to stop it knocking. Consequently, it gets heat whenever any other room is asking for it (i.e. downstairs) and the FHT room stat fights to control the temperature (but of course fails miserably). Hopefully I will get this sorted soon.

    Blog is at http://www.cpmills.com/ Heating graphs can be accessed through the tab at the far top of the page.

    Chris
    Hi Chris - nice work there that looks great and has some nice functionality. I have finally sorted my log file definitions to get plots for each of my rooms but still have some rooms that aren't reporting actual temperature - I think this is to do with binding the fht devices to my CUL but can't find a consistent set of instructions on how to do this.. if you can help with that it would be appreciated!

    Nick

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