Always ON at 1683 watts but all the breakers are Off


Is is possible tho have a leak of electricity somewhere in the house that bypass all the breakers?

We just closed all the breakers, except the Sense one, and the Always ON still show 1683 watts…

Any idea where it could come from ?


I would open a support ticket for this. I think there are on vacation until Monday.
You can open a support ticket via

That is a lot of power with the breakers off.

Make sure that you don’t have a sub-panel somewhere.

How long have all the other breakers been off? Always On is not an instant calculation. It is a running average. So if you just turned off the breakers and see the always on, that is to be expected. If you are in bubble view, look in the bottom right corner of your phone. The wattage displayed there is the actual wattage going though your sense at the moment. The bubbles are software driven based on the ML and other systems of Sense. The wattach in the bottom right on the phone app, or top left in web app is the instanations power without any “smarts”.

See this article for a brief explanation, or search the forums for some very in depth analysis.


Thanks Jon, I will !

As @ben suggests, the Always On number is a long-term calculated number. You should be looking at the instantaneous power usage - if that is much bigger than 0 and all your breakers are off, you either:

  • Have another parallel panel that is still supplying other parts of the house (several instances on the forum of this occurring)
  • Have something wrong with your Sense
1 Like

Great input ben, I will redo the all breakers Off looking at this wattach. Thanks !

Thanks Kevin, we will find that leak ! :slight_smile:

Is this the case for the “Always On” Device too? Because on the Always On device page I see this “Some gadgets are always using power. Consider your TV, DVR, internet router, or anything in standby mode. There’s a reason they’re called “phantom load.” Track them down: Pick a time when your home is quiet, electrically speaking. Now unplug your various standby devices and observe the effect of each on the Power Meter.
The Sense average Always On is 288 watts. What’s yours?”

If it’s not updated real time what would going around unplugging anything do for you?

Also wouldn’t his sub panel (if he had one) be feeding off his main panel? I have a sub panel for my pool but I have a breaker in my main panel supplying that sub panel. Unless he has two mains coming into his home I thought everything would have to go through his main panel then break off.

It appears that the only way to see immediate feedback to things you unplug is through the Main Power meter under the Now icon… over time the Always On reading will catch up later in time…

Correct. Anywhere in the App that shows Always On is not going to update immediately and is the running average.

Sense’s instructions are actually correct, but you have to pay close attention to the wording about watching the power meter, not the Always On number. The Power Meter is live which is why they say to watch the power meter when your home is “quiet”. Because there is a better chance you will see the wattage change when unplugging something small.

Then what is the use of the Always On device? If it isn’t immediate it should be listed elsewhere as a always on charge but every other bubble and device is immediate and telling me to go unplug things to see the difference on the Power Meter doesn’t guarantee I’m unplugging something on the Always On category (that is assuming Sense has correctly identified everything as Always On). I can walk around and unplug or turn off lights and see the effect on the Power Meter without knowledge of the always on category. For example I have a media room that has everything plugged into a power strip and it plugs into the wall. Through a Kil-A-Watt I know that it pulls about 50W of power just in standby mode.My Always On has 683W of power showing on it. I unplug it and I see my power meter drop by some number of watts that is great but how do I know that the devices I unplugged are actually being tracked in Always On. I could be unplugging something Sense didn’t consider always on and I won’t know for who knows how long.

It just seems stupid to have EVERYTHING else updating real time except that group. Those instructions should be general because I can do that for ANYTHING in my house, turn it on see the power consumption rise, turn it off, see it drop. It isn’t specific for the Always On category.

Let me be confusing - Always On is updated in real time (every half second) so you shouldn’t be complaining about it not being updated in real time. It’s just not an instantaneous (really near-instantaneous) value like all the others. But quite honestly, Sense is super-simplifying the all the actual real-time power data it is monitoring, making it easily digestible, so if you are really looking for complete accuracy, you’re going to have to educate yourself on the details of AC power (RMS vs true instantaneous, phase angle)

Always On is a very useful measurement of the the near-lowest power used over the last 48 hours, and Other is derived from Total Usage minus Always On (zero if it goes negative). Always On gives deep insight into all the devices that draw relatively constant power 24/7.

Above you said “the Always On number is a long-term calculated number”. 1/2 second isn’t a long term calculation. That would be what I would call “near real-time” if anything. If I unplug something and 1/2 a second later I can see it reflected that is good enough for me to watch that device as I unplug stuff. (I was trying to do this yesterday in fact when it was showing 683W of power. I went around unplugging some of the stuff I would say is “always on” and there were no changes after 30 seconds of it being unplugged. I don’t need something that the very second I unplug it I see the drop in power when I’m looking at devices. For that I would look at the power meter but if our goal is to get Always On down to a good low number (288 is the average it is touting) then I need a way to see that get updated when I unplug stuff to see if it is counting in the “Other” bucket or the Always On Bucket. Then to further complicate things my Always On dropped to about 630W this morning and has been around there for the day but nothing changed in what I have plugged in so it seems it moved some “Always On” to “Other”

So what does the last 48 hours have to do with Always On? My other is changing nearly every second and my always on is constant (so to speak as it did drop once). It was 683W yesterday whenever I looked and at some point dropped to 627W and is steady there. My Other is bouncing around from 1098 to 1100 something every second. Those are the only 2 devices with any numbers. I understand the intended use for Always On but if I want to limit those I need to be able to see a somewhat quick response in the lowering of the number when I go and turn off a power draw of 50W that I would consider Always On but I don’t see that even after 30 seconds of it being off.

Please re-read the explanation of Always On - It’s not an average. It’s the near lowest (1% bin from a statistical perspective) Total Usage for an 24-48 hour period re-calculated every 1/2 second.

Other changes due to changes in BOTH Always On and Total Usage, which both adjust every 1/2 second. That’s why it changes every half second in line with changes in both.

If you want to experiment with dropping Always On, you can pull the plug on one of the suspected devices and watch for results 48 hours later. Or unplug and

You can’t think of Always on as being a list of devices. Unless you have smart plugs, in its current form, Always on is not attempting to identify any devices. All it is saying is that “xxx power” is “always” being used averaged over the last 24-48 hours.

It is supposed to make you more aware to the concept of always on power. People have talked about Vampire loads for years. All the little wall warts just sucking up a watt or two adds up. Your cable box on idle. The home stereo amp. Sense is giving you a better view of that “vampire” power.

Sometimes the numbers go funny. This can happen for lots of reasons including internet outages, breakers tripping, turning off an always on device for long enough… This is to be expected based on how Always On is calculated. Again, because Always On is not looking at devices, just math on power.

You can read about how Always On is calculated in the article I linked about where it mentions the 1/2 second that Kevin talks about.
The point is - you can identify what your devices are using by looking at the power meter. If your house is “quiet” and you unplug something - look at how much the meter goes down. Plug it back in. Does the meter go back up a similar amount? Now you know.
This is how the instructions offer to help. This is how the many many other users on this forums have reduced their Always On. Again, the idea of Always On is supposed to make you THINK about how much power is being used all the time. It is not attempting to identify that for you.

If you turn on a ceiling fan and leave it on for long enough, that power will shift over from Other to Always on. It is not because Sense has found a ceiling fan. Its because the “low water mark” in the house over a certain period of time has gone up.
When you turn that ceiling fan off that has been running for 3 days, it will take Always On some time to adjust.

You know what most of your always on devices are if you start to think about it and walk around the house. Anything that is constantly drawing power is always on. Its as simple as that. If that thing draws variable power (a speaker amp in idle vs being used) the idle power will be captured in Always On. The variable power will go to Other.

Sense has given you suggestions on how to identify the specific usage of those devices.
I’m sorry if Always On doesn’t work the way you think it should, but that doesn’t mean that the way it works is wrong. Sense’s device identification can be hit or mis. You can read all about it all over these forums. But I think pretty unanimously people would agree that just the live power meter and Always On numbers have helped them reduce power usage (if that was their goal). You can read stories here if you are interesting in how other people have tracked Always On devices.


Ok I read the article linked by Kevin and I see the description of Always On but now I question why it’s even there in devices or the bubble and isn’t listed in some other way because the way it’s presented is it’s a current value of electrical pull.

So when I pull up “Now” on the web or the app the wattage next to the plug moves up or down and they are in sync. So the bubbles in the “Now” on the webpage add up to the number displayed next to the plug when first loading. It quickly goes off from that number as the plug number changes but the bubbles don’t. But if Always on is just a 24-48 hour average then it may or may not be correct. It is reporting at power draw from the UI look and feel but I think it would be much better to only have “Other” there that is the unidentified power draw and have Always on as an attribute of it rather than making it look like other devices in your system or in the case of “Other” a group of devices in your house. So really Always On is a subset of “Other” that Sense feels is always powered on but hasn’t been identified yet but using an average over 24-48 hours. So if the system listed your power pull let’s say 5000W and AC was at 3000W and Fridge was at 30W and the rest was in other of 2070W then some amount of the 2070W is “Always On”. It’s unknown what was thrown into the average to make it so but it’s really part of other. But for a new person coming to Sense and they see on the now page bubbles for AC, bubbles for Fridge, bubbles for washer, bubbles for dryer and Always On, what do you think they are going to think that bubble is? Well every other bubble is a device or in the case of “Other” is a group of devices, they are going to think that is a device or group of devices. I would think that as Sense Identifies things, let’s say a Roku that is always on but is identified in the house it’s going to make a device specific for that and it will be pulled out of “Other” and out of the average for “Always On” and be it’s own thing. So “Always On” shouldn’t be it’s own bubble as that makes it feel like the other bubbles and it isn’t.

And this argument isn’t about identification of devices. It’s identification so far has been miss but it’s new for me and I’m giving it time but if you list “Always On” as a device users are going to think of it as a device and it’s not so while I understand now more about Always On (thanks for the link) I still believe having the value for Always on in a place it doesn’t act like a device or group of devices would be helpful for future users.

In day-to-day usage looking at the bubble view, I find the separation of the “always-on” bubble and the “other” bubble is quite useful because it means that the “other” bubble is the “unidentified variable” usage. Effectively, it indicates things that you should want Sense to be able to identify but that it can’t identify yet.

For example, Sense at my condo is currently indicating 570 watts of “other”. I think that’s the temporary window AC unit I am currently running. When I turn the window AC off, “other” disappears.

Over in the “Devices” view, I can see that 14 watts of “always on” is from my Tivo and 4 watts is from the TP-Link for a power strip I have my desktop computer plugged into. The other 252 watts of “always on” are unknown. I like that Sense lumps this “always on” unknown power usage into “always on” instead of “other”.

As an engineer, I like that this points to Sense design maybe being driven by user value vs engineering. I’m probably overstepping, though. :slight_smile:

BTW, I’m interested in what the OP found was causing the high 1683 always on value. It doesn’t sound like the typical “water heater always on due to recirculating pump” case. It also seems too high for a constantly running pool pump.

1 Like

I’m not saying necessarily removing it from the bubble view but put it as a sub bubble or something since it’s technically not a true value of the power you are pulling right now like the other bubbles.

How do you know the 14 watts of Always On is from your Tivo and 4 from the TP-link Power Strip if it is in Always On since that is an average of some power used?

The Tivo and TP-Link Power Strip appear as sub-items to “Always On” in the Devices view. Note that Tivo is actually a TP-Link plug as well, I just forgot this due to how I named it.

You know, I seem to have some recollection of a setting that controls whether “Always On” TP-Link devices show up in the bubble view separate from “Always On” or glommed in. I can’t find it anymore but I do remember reading about this preference somewhere. Or maybe I just dreamed it?

1 Like

Just one note - you keep saying “average” for a 48 hour period, but statistical values like medians, quantiles, and 1% bins (like Always On) are entirely different animals. It’s worth learning a bit more about this calculation so you can use it effectively.