If you were debating on getting a Kasa power strip HS300 , now is the time at $55. Sales end tonight.
Yep, I got two of those. Don’t forget the KP115, available from BLT for $22 a piece.
What I like about the HS300, is that it has 3× USB charging outlets i.e., no need to use another bulky charger.
It’s now down to $54.
I installed 8 of the HS300 power strips and it has made a world of difference in how Sense is able to provide information about energy usage. Before pretty much all I was seeing was “Always On” and “Other”. Now I am seeing this.
Ok, it won’t let me upload the image…
Integrated with Alexa using motion sensors and timed events and have cut my electric bill from 350 a month down now to 170. The Kasa HS300 is very reasonably price when you consider you get 6 outlets with remote control and energy monitor at the same time.
Had some issues at first getting sense to see the Kasa outlets. I run a Cisco wireless system, and had to turn on Multicast before Sense would detect them. After that Sense will pick up a new Kasa HS300 in a couple of seconds. They do need to be on the same wireless network also.
Wow! Do you have all 48 plugs hooked up? I thought sense only did 20 but read that some people have more than that.
I was going to suggested the same. 20 smartplug outlets is the documented max. My experience is that it isn’t a hard limit where Sense smartplug reporting stops functioning, but rather data starts dropping out from the smartplugs on a sporadic basis, and then eventually one might see dropouts in the house power data stream.
More info here and in FAQ on smart plugs
I do and it appears to be dropping some of them, seeing 36 of them currently. Thats a little disappointing, but it still did a great job of isolating devices and usage in the house. I also don’t see a way in Sense to disable ones I don’t want monitored, so I could pick the high usage devices. Maybe that is something Sense can add. My main goal though was to automate the house. I use Alexa primary to automate controlling power to the devices. It has worked really well, went from average usage of 1300k to just under 1000 during the day, and down to around 600k overnight. Will take a month or so to see impact to the bill.
Thanks to the way Sense monitor discovers and secures data from the Kasa smartplugs (broadcast polling), there’s really no way to remove specific smart plugs within the Sense world - you send out a “emeter” broadcast and every Kasa power monitoring smart plug tries to reply. If you read the note from @RyanAtSense linked in my earlier post, much of smartplug limit of 20 stems from network traffic and collisions.
Even if one has a really ‘solid’ network (e.g. better than -30 RSSI to all devices), the Sense hardware still has a hard time keeping real-time track of all the devices. I suspect it is as much a memory limitation of the little box as it is network traffic, too.
I now have 38 smart plugs (4 KS300’s, 9 Wemo Insight, 5 KP115’s … and would like to add more KP115’s) …
When I added the 4th KS300, Sense kind of “lost track” of two of the first 3 KS300’s for a day or so, but it seems to have ‘recovered’ them – to a certain extent. However, there is definitely a ‘lag’ now if attempting to use the Sense app to “control” some of the smart plugs … which I don’t do for most of them! Only for things like the Xmas lights . Just yesterday I wanted to turn one of them (a Wemo) off (was reporting on in Sense app), and it wouldn’t turn off; kept refreshing as “on”. I checked the Wemo app, and visually, and it really was off. It took another minute or so before Sense finally showed the plug’s state as “off”.
- I don’t see “perfect” signal strength as helping anything. The limiting bottleneck is packet congestion on the network during the polling spikes, and the Sense monitor’s ability to process a big batch of incoming packets while still accomplishing all the other critical tasks it is in the middle of. More on what goes on inside the monitor here:
- One way to remove the least needed HS300 from Sense, but still allow Kasa functionality would be to move that HS300 to a separate subnet. I have a couple of subsets in my house that approach works for me. Sense only gets to see the smartplugs on my IoT network/subnet.
The main issue with segregating HS300’s on separate subnets is that sort of defeats the purpose of having “ground-truth” information about energy consumption by various devices. In my case, most of the HS300 devices are ‘always on’ type devices which I’m not turning on/off for any reason (and thus not automating by rules, either).
It it were easier to “move around” smartplugs, then that device limitation wouldn’t be such an issue, because then, after I have a good idea of the consumption of a specific group of devices I could replace the HS300 with a ‘dumb’ power strip on a single smartplug (so I’d still at least get the precise energy usage for that group of devices, and thus reduce the number of “reporting devices” by 5).
One ‘product development’ thought I had was to have an “add-on” for Sense which would be dedicated to management of the “ground-truth” devices, thus freeing up the existing Sense from that overhead of collecting and consolidating all that ‘extra’ traffic.