Trouble Identifying a device


So Sense has detected a device that runs every ~24 hours, usually at night almost every day.
It runs for about 9 and 1/2 minutes and Avg Wattage is 62.7.

I think it might be my Water Softener but it’s very basic and I don’t have a way to determine when it runs.
It would only run to ‘recharge’, without unplugging it for several days, I’m not sure.

Not to mention, it might not be the Softener at all but most of the other stuff is accounted for.

Any detective suggestions?

Actually, as I type this I remember that I have a TP-Link smart plug and that I could put on the water softener and monitor it that way.

Ok, so., I’ll do that and if anyone else has any thoughts or suggestions, Let me know.




If you have a Fleck softener head, they run at 2 am if the time is set correctly.



It’s no a Fleck, it’s a older culligan model.
but thank you.



Culligan buys Fleck and relabeled as their own.
Mine is also rebranded.
Lookup Flexk 5600



Not a softener, the only time it uses extra energy is when it runs the motor that moves the valve plunger between stages. Even then it’s an AC to DC converter that wouldn’t draw that much.

Post of screenshot of the signature if you would please.



Got curious and had to look
@samheidie is correct about how much it uses.
Mine is not DC as far as what is shown but only shows 3 watts of use.
It has a single motor. It is drawing all the time and not just on regeneration, the timer portion is always on.



@samheidie, you’re correct about the power being AC to DC.
It’s got a big ole power brick.

Anyway, I’m pretty sure it’s not the water softener now, since the usage hasn’t matched the TP-link usage.

I’ve attached a signature screen shot. (anyway to isolate the signature in the app?)
I picked one from a few days ago because it was early in the morning a less background noise. (recently it’s been running during the day)



Looks like some resistive heat or device from that shot. Also, you said originally it was drawing about 63 watts? Is that still true>

The shot above looks close to half of your 941 watt current usage.



@samheidie, your right I don’t understand.
I exported data from that device originally and that was the Average Wattage listed.
I’ve double checked by going back in the meter graph and it looks like it’s using about 450 Watts its running.
I’ve included the export data that I pulled the times match but wattage doesn’t match.
I’m very confused.

DateTime Device ID Name Avg Wattage
1/28/2019 3:00 91131e8e Heat 6 71.402
1/29/2019 8:00 91131e8e Heat 6 22.832
1/30/2019 13:00 91131e8e Heat 6 70.22
1/31/2019 17:00 91131e8e Heat 6 71.526
2/1/2019 20:00 91131e8e Heat 6 67.416
2/1/2019 21:00 91131e8e Heat 6 2.306
2/2/2019 15:00 91131e8e Heat 6 64.913
2/3/2019 5:00 91131e8e Heat 6 62.477
2/3/2019 23:00 91131e8e Heat 6 8.514
2/4/2019 0:00 91131e8e Heat 6 56.399


Average wattage in export is the total energy used during that hour (kWh) divided by 1 hour. If your device isn’t on for the entire hour, then your average wattage will be less than the wattage when it is on. For example, it looks like your device is on for 10 minutes at 450W (or so). Assuming that was the only usage in the 6 o’clock hour, that would be 0.075kWh of energy used, or 75W of average power.

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450 watt heat signature usually at night = furnace igniter?



I have hot water baseboard heating with a Gas furnace.
it uses a pilot light but it shouldn’t ignite for 10 minutes? should it?



My vote is a defrost cycle on either a refrigerator or deep-freeze/chest freezer.



Ignition would happen in seconds and with a pilot light the furnace would draw only enough to energize the solenoid for full gas flow. That would last as long as the furnace was running.

Also running would be the circulator pump (clearly, motor not heating element), which starts later than the flame and usually runs longer than the flame itself.



Does the time of use coincide with very low temperatures? And do you have a heat pump? Some have what’s called a “crankcase heater” on the outdoor unit. @HVAC_Marc would be who would know about this.



that’s a possibility. I have a fridge in the garage which isn’t insulated.
Sense already found the fridge but if that run differently, that could be it.

I’ll set a reminder to move my Tp-link to the garage this evening.



I live in upstate Albany, NY, what do you consider LOW temps?
It’s been running regularly once a day since August so I don’t think it’s temp related.



If it’s been since August then I doubt that would be the source. I don’t know how long you’ve had sense or how far you can go back but if you can pinpoint the month it started,
It could be seasonal. I believe @kevin1 is correct about it being a resistance heat source.
The only heat source I have of that wattage is a 540 watt radiant floor heat cable.
Sense has not yet detected any of the defrost devices for fridge, freezer or heat pump so I don’t know what they usually draw.



OK, so it’s not the garage fridge.
Tp-link went off around 3:15am from about 17 minutes
but my mystery device went off at 1:38am for the 9 1/2 minutes it always does.

I can check my kitchen fridge but it’s tricky to get to the plug.

I have central Air which is turned off for the winter.
is there a part of it that would run?

I really appreciate all the help and suggestions.



My experience is sense is using a Fourier transform to extract your devices frequency characteristics. It’s really poor at picking up DC devices like heaters and lights. They need a different approach for these