Can't figure out this Device 1

I have been trying to figure out this Device 1 for over a month. It comes on at all hours of the day without a consistent pattern and never stays on longer then 10 - 11 seconds.


Mobile App showing last 24 hours:

Anybody have ideas on what this could be?

Keurig? Roomba?

Can you zoom in on one of the onsets? If it has a big jump 2-3x right at the start it could be a motor of some kind. Also look at the start times on the full power meter, it could be part of another device.

No I don’t have either of those devices. My coffee maker is detected and it only comes on at 6 AM and I turn off the heater after I get my first cup.

@steve is part of the development of this open db …

Great for Always On stuff and maybe handy to work out this one.

@steve, if you’re reading this, how do we plug in “54W” to do a search?

@faejon: Maybe post a Mains Power Meter image detail when the 54W device is active.

@ixu Unless I’m mistaken that HEA and Dr. Power website is just for Californians. I’ll try and see if I can capture a screenshot on my phone next time I get a notification that Device 1 turned on. It’s only on for a few seconds so it will be tough.

I don’t see anything else detected at the same time just the always on and ‘other’.

The Mains Power Meter, the overall usage from you whole panel – please post a detailed image of that when, historically, Device 1 is active. The Mains PM is the only real “ground truth” you are able to see with Sense unless you have a smart plug on the device so consequently the “Device 1” signature may or may not represent an actual device’s signature … that’s where one needs to begin when sleuthing these things. Just because Sense recognizes a “Device” doesn’t mean there is a device like that … it could be part of some device’s signature or an anomalous spike from something.

A big hint Sense is giving is that it’s called the device “Device 1” and not “Roomba charger” or somesuch. The pool of device signatures and community names associated with them is now big enough that that information is quite telling. Sense may automatically want to rename “Device 1” to something else at some point if you just leave things alone.

This is the fun stage: place your bets!

1 Like

@ixu I hope this is the power mains that you are talking about. There was a cluster of Device 1 detections last night between 11:26 PM - 11:35 PM. I took a screenshot of the Device 1 last 24 hour meter from the mobile app and overlaid it with the Meter screen from the web app for the same time frame. I then drew a line to each of the detections in the Main Meter screen. There were no other devices identified at the same time.

If this is not the Mains Power Meter would you let me know specifically which app and what screen.

Thank you for the help!

1 Like

It’s hard to learn much from that signature alone.

I’d suggest that if this is something that runs near constantly, it could be some component in a refrigerator (I’ve seen those signatures vary wildly between different fridge technologies and efficiencies).

If you have an active central cooling system (in a humid environment), that could be a small pump that pumps condensation out of the air handler unit.

Supporting that: it appears to be slightly less active in the evening, when there would be less cooling activity (however, I don’t really see any activity that looks like the main AC unit (unless that’s on a separate panel or something).

Could also be any sort of periodic device like a small sump pump, or even a motion-activated light.

PS: your total electricity usage is extremely stable over time… I’m guessing either Sense is only monitoring one panel in a multi-panel system, or that the house was extremely calm during this time! :wink:

You can do “process of elimination” by switching off breakers and seeing which breaker it is on, that might narrow it down. (I had a similar [though much smaller wattage device; not detected by sense, but I could see the pattern myself], and eventually I tracked it down to a security system that would periodically charge its battery… that was really tough to find!)

One more thought. Have seen some kinds of battery chargers exhibit this behavior.

See this posting:

We had all gone to bed at that point so only the “Always on” and “Other” things were running. The screen shot also only shows a 5 minute slice of time. Within that 5 minute slice the meter starts at ~ 900 W and ends at ~ 1000 W. You can see the +100 W tick in the middle of the screenshot at about 11:31 PM.

I have a central HVAC system that uses natural gas for heat. I’m currently only heating the house and the A/C part is off. The HVAC system is supplied by the main electric panel and when the fan kicks on to move the air I see a noticeable uptick in the “Other” bubble. Our hot water tank is also heated by natural gas so unless it’s showing the igniter of either system I have ruled those devices out.

I have tried to use this method but with it’s erratic appearance and extremely short duration (it clustered last night at 11:26 PM with multiple 10 second on / off events and then laid dormant until noon today with one 10 second event) it is difficult to predict let alone get to the breaker in time.

I appreciate your input!

Oh, Yipes, my mistake, I thought you were showing a day, centered on midnight.

Wow, yeah, my guesses would be wildly wrong on, given the much shorter time frame.

However, I can tell you: it’s not a large motor (would have a sharp spike at the front).
And it’s not on a perfect schedule, so that indicates something that is at least partially dependent on the environment or other conditional factor.

Apologies for missing the time scale from before: I was on mobile, and couldn’t see the bottom of the images in context.

It seems to have consistent peaks, and it appears to just slightly “ramp up” (and then “ramp down” when ending).
This doesn’t look like a battery charging (would decrease over time, or have much sharper peaks).
Certainly not a large motor (would have a spike at the front, unless very efficient, and wouldn’t bother being so efficient for <70w).
Possibly a “smart” light of some kind: fades in and out (though, that’s an unusually rapid cycle)?

Next steps (in my opinion), go to your circuit breakers during a quiet time, and begin switching off circuits… do this slowly: only 1-3 circuits per minute. And try to eliminate the more “noisy” devices first: laptops, etc. that would randomly wake up and use some spike of power and then sleep again.

Remember: sometimes you will get weird behavior: a device may lose connectivity with a device you just powered off, and it will start trying to contact it at high power… so you can see bizarre spikes in power usage right after flipping off a circuit… or, more likely those are just random activity from other devices)… also: obviously, you can’t switch off the circuits for Sense, or your various internet/WiFi devices.

Have you considered using some of the Kasa TP “smart plugs” on certain “noisy devices”? If you have a newer refrigerator, in particular, I’d recommend tracking the fridge. (Obviously, any complex [always on] electronics like a DVR, game station, computer, etc. are also prime candidates: main thing is: “erratic” or “noisy” power usage. Sense loves simple, consistent shapes [well, that aren’t 220v rectangles]. For anything erratic, consider a smart plug, or expect that it will not be well-understood by Sense.)

For example, here’s my fridge (it’s an “efficient” Samsung)…


In the blue section, note how the valleys are smooth. But in the red section, it seems to alternate different power usages every 30 seconds.
In the green section, thats the defrost (the tall rectangle is the heating), the more intense cooling cycle starts right afterwards, and he whole signature varies significantly from day-to-day.

Interestingly, the “every 30 seconds power usage”… that seems to toggle on/off with each defrost… so, the “bumps” will occur after a defrost, and then turn off at next defrost, and so on.

And then there’s the yellow section: which just shows that I put something warm in the fridge, etc. and it had to ramp up cooling for that…

Conceptually, yes: Sense may someday be able to figure out such a complex model, but this is such an erratic device: its much simpler to just put it on a smart plug, and thereby eliminate that “noise” from confusing others potential detections.

2 Likes

That’s a nice parsing of a fridge @mwrosier!

And @faejon, I think you created one of the nicer Sense overlays I’ve seen here. Sense 3D!

As @mwrosier points out, this is a tricky one.

Looking back at the original Device 1 stats I see what translates to 1542 x 7s per month or 3 hours at 54W … so if it’s any consolation that’s all of 162 Whr/month or 0.2W of “Always On”.

This just in from @pete2 … this seems a little too coincidental in wattage/time to be ignored!

1 Like

@ixu I agree with you on the coincidence. I replied to that topic.