Alert frequent cycling

TL;DR: I would really love to make alerts that trigger for increased cycling of appliances to detect problems early.

Brief story: I just installed my sense last week, has been dutifully identifying different loads in my house. While trying to name them I found one that was cycling regularly, and very frequently, which I eventually identified as my furnace. It shouldn’t have been cycling like that, and it triggered my investigation to find a clogged air filter that was causing the heat exchanger to overheat, hence repeatedly tripping the overheat protection. While I’m already impressed that the Sense could help me detect a problem like that, my future chances of discovering a similar issue would be helped with notifications that could tell me if certain appliances are cycling above a threshold, or have changed dramatically.

Thanks in advance for considering!


I would x2 this as a potentially useful thing. One of the very first things my Sense unit showed me when I was able to see our homes usage on a chart was that our refrigerator, which I suspected was dying, was indeed acting strangely - short cycling, and then sometimes running nonstop for hours and hours.

Sure enough, it was indeed dying, and it’s since been replaced. It was 18 years old, it didn’t owe us much.

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Interesting. I’m curious how you’d like to see this implemented. Would you prefer to set some limit of cycles per hour, or have that number suggested based on the device type? The issue with the former is that it’s tough to know what’s normal without watching it for a while (or having a fair amount of knowledge going into it). The issue I’d expect with the latter is that devices and homes vary significantly, so — for example — the same fridge could cycle with vastly different frequencies in two different homes.

I would also like to see an alert triggered by the frequency a device is power cycled on/off. I ran into a problem with a leaky toilet which caused my well pump to get repeated calls for more water/pressure. It ran undetected all night until my well ran dry. I reviewing my Sense data I saw the well pump had run over 60 times in a 2 hour period. Normal water usage would max at 4-5 well pump power cycles in an hour. The current alert only allows for continued running for a period of time. I’d like to have an alert that can be configured if device runs over X number of times during Y duration send an alert to me.


You might want to look into the Phyn Smart Water Assistant. Phyn uses similar technology to Sense except that it monitors water instead of electricity. By measuring changes in water pressure it creates signatures and applies these to identify the different fixtures in a home. By understanding how different fixtures use water it can detect, for example, when a toilet is leaking and send an alert to the homeowner. I just finished spending several months evaluating Phyn and documented it all in an article for Residential Tech Today Magazine. You can find the article here: Smart Water Management Solutions from Phyn

Hope this helps

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I would imagine that if you are wanting it to do auto-detection of “abnormal” behavior of devices, Sense would first need to learn what “normal” behavior is. Therefore there would be a learning period for each device. Once an average is determined, the user can specify an alert if that average alters by a certain amount.

I imagine that you may only want to use this feature for certain devices. I use my coffee maker and turn the lights on and off a wide variety of times a day. However other appliances/devices may be more predictable.

You could also implement a feature where sense doesn’t do an auto learning method and allows the user to enter a number of cycles, regardless of what the average is. This may Be beneficial for a device that may have a very large average of cycles, or give the ability to skip a learning process.

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any update on this? on X number of times in X minutes, send an alert.

Hi Scott,

The best thing to do is file a feedback/request here:
Feedback here:

It goes straight to the product team for consideration in future updates.

Thanks so much for your patience.

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