Usage Accuracy

Will do on Saturday.

I think I’ve probably found the issue. The 2nd panel has all the FAUs for the AC systems.

So, although all the AC consumptions show in the APP when fan mode is manually turned on the APP shows nothing so it is being missed. I’m surprised that the conusmption for these is so high. I was already seeing large conusmption for the units themselves so made the assumption that each unit was being accurately tracked. Silly me.

This weekend I’ll see if I can position the clamps before the split to the second panel and hope that’ll resolve things.

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Here’s a couple of pictures.


I moved the clamps over to the cables on the left hand side below the meter. Does this look like it might be right?



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I think you have solved your problem. You are now monitoring the current for the whole house. By posting pictures (and your solution), you have provided information to someone else who has the same panel.

I am going to repeat a safety warning that you probably already know: Don’t touch or get near the exposed “live” connectors (metal plates/bolts) since this is the incoming power to your house.

The only thing you can do slightly better (since you have the space) is:

  1. Install the CT clamps at a 90-degree angle to the wire.
  2. Place foam inserts inside the clamps to centrally position the CT clamps around the wire.
  3. I taped my CT clamps closed to make certain that they remained closed.

After I made these changes to my setup, I found that the SENSE monitor readings followed the Power Company readings more accurately.

Nice pictures! Thanks for sharing.

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Thanks. I will do what you suggest. As for touching anything, I’m pretty much scared S%#@&less when doing anything with the cover removed. Even placing the clamps is something I find scary.

BTW, do you think I should do a “Reset Data”?

After you re-positioned the CT clamps, did you attach them on the same phase leg and place the CT clamps in the same orientation? If you didn’t, then you will need to make a change or do a ‘factory reset’. How much data will you lose if you do a ‘factory reset’?

Side note: In most areas of the USA, The service wire on the left side is designated as the “black” phase. The service wire on the right side is designated as the “red” phase. Your sub-panel wiring is installed with those markings. If you have red electrical tape, you might mark the right side wiring so in the future you will know which leg is on which phase. (Not required, but an idea since you have the panel cover off.)

To be honest I’m not 100% sure of anything. I believe they’re on the same phase leg with similar orientation. Shortly after making the change I confirmed that I was now seeing usage when the AC fans were on. Previously I was missing this usage.

With all the AC units off, I did see an bubble labelled AC so I knew something was being detected incorrectly.

How much data would I lose with a factory reset… 9-10 months. I’m a little leary of doing the full factory reset as I’d need to reconfigure the wifi and I have had massive problems previously doing that. My first unit was faulty and was replaced when I changed the SSID and couldn’t reconnect.

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If you are seeing values that are consistent prior to re-positioning your CT clamps, then I would recommend that you not do a ‘factory reset’ at this time. Wait and see. If problems occur, then you can try different positioning options or contact SENSE support. It sounds like you have completed the change.

If you drill a hole through the metal base units, remember to add a ‘strain relief’ so the sharp metal edges do not cut the SENSE detection cables.

I should have sent you a picture of my install. I had to crack open the entire meter side.

But my my sub panel connection is little easier to spot.

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Appears to be single phase. The red tape and far left black wire are both neutral. One of them is incoming and the other is outgoing probably to the neutral bus bar.

No such animal in use in the United States these days. We have single or three phase only. Unless someone is generating their own power with a two phase generator

Today I received the first bill since making the change and I can now report that I’m a LOT closer than I was previously. The bill covers 33 days and the usage was 3690 kWh. The Clamps were moved 2 days into the billing period so I can only estimate the usage on those 2 days. Sense reported 3580 and this is within 3%.


That’s great news! Now you just have to resolve your device detection issues or at least figure out how to otherwise achieve your monitoring goals!


@dianecarolmark It is good news.

Unfortunately, I feel my monitoring goals will never be achieved. I want to logon and see what’s running…I don’t want to see a big “Other” category, I want to know exactly what is running right now. I could have achieved the exact same thing, for a lot less money with the Rainforest Eagle. It doesn’t have nice orange bubbles but it exactly matches my utility bill so it’s not entirely dissimilar.

I like the Sense but it has failed to meet my expectations…maybe they were too high? I’ve owned it for almost a year and it still cannot differentiate between my AC units.It also fails to detect my pool equipment, which has been running from 8am to 4pm

I will give it more time. Then I’ll probably give it some more, because it’s a slow learner and that’s what we must do.

Congrats on matching up with your billing. I have a Rainforest Eagle and Sense trumps the Eagle in just about every way, even before I consider device detection…

  • Solar - The Eagle only give me my net energy readings. Sense shows solar production and total usage - much more useful.
  • UI - Much better, more responsive and flexible UI on web and app, vs. constrained web-only for Eagle
  • Export - far better export capabilities and flexibility in Sense. And even though the Eagle allows finer granularity in export, it is essentially useless because if you export for a time period greater than a day, it never produces an export file.
  • Always On - Sense calculates Always On, which is also helpful for reducing power usage.
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I think now that you’ve Changed your setup, overall accuracy matching your bill will be much better. Mine has always been pretty close, within a few KWH.
As far getting more detections for the best monitoring, a lot of us had higher expectations and my belief is it’s based on what is presented on the website.
I’ve got close to 30 native detections not including smart plugs. They were a lot more reliable in the past than they are now. I have a lot of clicking “this device is not on” these days.
My main electric hogs are mostly detected and are the ones that have remained accurate. While I’d like to have all of them be accurate, they are just not there yet.

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The Sense Should thump the Rainforest Eagle, right? It’s 3 times the price plus installation costs if there’s an electrician involved. I get very accurate data from the Eagle. It is paired with PVOutput (Basically Free) and that is plenty good enough for me. It more closely matches the utility bill than the Sense, so far anyway. BTW, I have the Sense in a vacation rental which doesn’t have Solar.

The following pic is from my primary residence…

I agree the UI is better and I like it more but there’s also an App for the Eagle, so not just web. It’s called EnergyVue. I cannot comment on the export functionality as I don’t use it and don’t really know why it would be useful for me.

Good point - I wish I could make PVOutput work for me, but my experiences with its live update left a lot to be desired (never could make it work). For me, Sense has been a no-brainer. Plus since it’s not connected with my meters (PG&E/Eagle or SolarCity), I get the benefit of a double check of both of those.

You have an AMI smart meter for the Eagle? Is it true that thats what you have to have to get monitoring with the Eagle?

I don’t have a smart meter so I don’t think it’s an option for me.

PVoutput also isn’t really an option for us because our solar monitoring isn’t compatible with pvoutput. What solar monitoring do you have that’s compatible? I’m jealous.

With Eagle + PVoutput, can you easily see total usage? Is pvoutput doing that integration for you? What’s the smallest granularity and lag you can get?

Apologies for all the questions, but I’m always looking for alternatives for recommendations for friends. As I said, in my situation I don’t have a smart meter so Sense is my only option.

You do need a “smart” meter and the utility needs to allow connection. My meter is an “OpenWay by Itron”.

I have an SMA inverter and use SBFSpot running on a Raspberry Pi to get the data from the inverter. It was a pretty steep learning curve but it now just runs in the background. The data is pushed to PVOutput by the Eagle and the Pi every 5 minutes and they do the calculations.