Turn off power to help confirm?


Sense installed about 3 days now, and several devices identified. One positively identified as the well pump, but 3 others identified as fridge or freezer - runs through the night, and power signature seems to consistent based on my searches. However, when the device is on, I have turned off the circuit so there is no power to the actual fridges and freezers I have, but the power still shows on the device monitor.

Essentially, I want to confirm - if the electric consumption remains after turning off power to a device, then the detected device cannot be that particular device right? Because no power means no electric consumption.

Welcome @skessdtrek,

You have entered the interesting world of identifying newly detected devices - some will be obvious (as you have discovered), and other will be complete mysteries. A couple things to know as you investigate:

  • Device Bubbles won’t always go off if you flip off breakers or switches. Offs and Ons can look different to Sense when they come from a controller or thermostat (like fridges and freezers) vs from a wall switch or breaker. So that’s not always a helpful way to identify devices.

  • But there are a number of other approaches you can take that should help:

  • And if you do want to flip breaker to size up loads, you can use the main Power Meter -

But the actual power consumption meter on the device page should drop to zero if it is running and I kill the circuit at the breaker, right? So the device is running at 353 watts, I kill the circuit that the fridge is on, and the device is still consuming 353 watts, so the fridge that I just turned off at the circuit breaker cannot be the device that sense found, correct?

Sorry I didn’t cover that. The “actual power consumption meter on the device page” you describe, is known as the Device Power Meter, and it has the same issue as the Bubbles - It does NOT always show the actual power consumption for the device. It’s a rough view of device power usage based on detection of on and off transitions.

But Sense can miss transitions that don’t come the normal way. For instance, turning off the breaker for a fridge, cuts power to the control board at the same time as it cuts power to the compressor - that means Sense see a larger off drop than typical along with different fluctuations related to the control board.

The only real-time power measurement you can count on 100% is the Main Power Meter.

Ok, that makes a lot of sense now. So that begs the question, how do I determine WHICH fridge is device 1 and which fridge is the other? I cannot really hear the fridge cycling it’s compressor, (which is how I was able to verify the well pump), but I would like to be confident about monitoring which fridge is using how much power.

Overall I think this will be helpful, and I knew it requires some detective work, but I am somewhat limited on what exactly I am looking for to accurately say what device has been detected. The other thing is that a lot of the posts that deal with device detection are from >1 -2 years ago, so I presume things have been improved since then.

You have the same conundrum I do - 3 very quiet built-in fridges (really a wine fridge, regular fridge and freezer), all side-by-side, with no access to their plugs. I can’t tell which detection goes with which, today but not so worried as long as I know the total usage.
But two possible options, if I wanted to identify and monitor one in particular.

  1. If I could get at the plugs, I would put each one on my roaming smart plug. That would give me waveforms in Sense to compare against.

  2. If I was willing to wait it out, mine are each on separate breakers, so I would flip 2 of the 3 off and see which bubble still comes up.