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Author Topic: Plug-in for ecobee thermostats in development  (Read 201707 times)

Offline watou

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Re: Plug-in for ecobee thermostats in development
« Reply #45 on: December 06, 2013, 02:32:29 am »
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I do see the entry here: http://apps.mios.com/plugin.php?id=3586  or do you mean something else?
I meant in Vera's interface Apps->Install Apps.

Could it be that plugins you already have installed are filtered out of that search view?  I don't see it (or the Nest plugin) either when I search that way, and I have both installed.  Not sure about why that is (and not willing to uninstall any plugin in order to test my theory :) ).

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I suspect that the issue is that the Ecobee API, last I checked, has no way to report the current operating state, such as Heating, Cooling or Idle, or the current FanStatus (which is always reported as Off).  And so the plugin can't either.  Lacking that information, there would be no way to count energy consumption based on the UserSuppliedWattage setting, even though you may have supplied the values.  I suppose my adding UserSuppliedWattage was misleading if there is no way with the present Ecobee API to know when the system was heating or cooling or if the fan was currently running.

If you could lobby Ecobee to add the current running HVAC and fan states to their API, then maybe enough customers asking for this API feature could tip the scales.  Then I would update the plugin to make use of it and UserSuppliedWattage settings would most likely start being of value (plus there would be new automation trigger possibilities).

I do see Wattage reported when the Heat is On (first number from UserSuppliedWattage variable).
What triggers this Wattage display? Is there any way to see/used this trigger/status?

From your post I understand that Ecobee's API does not report weather On status is Heating or Cooling, however you can derive that if thermostat is in non-Auto mode state.
Alternately, one can adjust wattage seasonally.

I have no idea what code uses UserSuppliedWattage or the inner workings of it.  I know that there is no HVAC running state possible with the Ecobee API as it's currently published.

Note that the running state (Idle, Heating, Cooling, FanOnly) refers to what relays have been engaged in the thermostat to turn your equipment on or off, while the HVAC mode of Heat, Cool, AutoChangeOver, etc. refer to what equipment will be engaged when the thermostat setpoints haven't been reached (or whatever other logic exists in the thermostat).  There is nothing that can be learned about what equipment is currently drawing energy from the mode, unless some piece of code in Vera is using a very crude guesstimate that, say, we're in Heat mode, and the current temperature is below the heat setpoint temperature.  I would imagine such a guesstimate would be extremely rough and not very dependable, but in any case, it's completely outside the realm of the plugin.

I will send Ecobee a request to to add running status in API.
Btw, I did see API documentation on Runtime stage reporting for heat and cooling https://www.ecobee.com/home/developer/api/documentation/v1/objects/ExtendedRuntime.shtml
Is it usable?

The ExtendedRuntime information isn't usable because it only reflects the state of things 5, 10 and 15 minutes ago, not currently, and plus polling that payload on each polling cycle would be very burdensome on the plugin and probably Ecobee's servers.

Please let us know if Ecobee responds favorably to your enhancement request to add current running state information to the API.

Thanks a lot for your help and feedback.

watou

Offline theal

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Re: Plug-in for ecobee thermostats in development
« Reply #46 on: December 06, 2013, 01:31:20 pm »
Watou, thanks for clarification.

I got this reply from Ecobee on runtime status API:
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We will try to have it implemented for the next major release which is slated March 2014 or so.

let's keep our fingers crossed

Offline watou

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Re: Plug-in for ecobee thermostats
« Reply #47 on: January 16, 2014, 02:29:49 pm »
Hi all,

I've submitted v0.9 of the Ecobee plugin for Vera to apps.mios.com, and it addresses these three issues in v0.8:

- GetModeTarget always returns AutoChangeOver (https://github.com/watou/vera-ecobee-thermostat/issues/4)

I forget when this came up, but the device now holds a ModeTarget variable, so any attempt to GetModeTarget will return the ModeTarget.

- Remove all code/doc for multiple app instance restrictions (https://github.com/watou/vera-ecobee-thermostat/issues/5)

Very early on, there was an API issue with multiple instances to the same app from the same user.  Since those issues are long resolved, I removed the special case code for dealing with it.

- Do not forget tokens on API "auth" errors, only on refresh request (https://github.com/watou/vera-ecobee-thermostat/issues/6)

Occasionally there is some error using the API, and the v0.8 plugin would eagerly throw away your tokens, forcing you to have to request a new PIN and reenter it at ecobee.com.  This change should stop that irritating process.

If accepted, v0.9 of the plugin should be available in the next few days.  Please let me know if you see anything strange with this update.


Regards,
watou

Offline redneckTech

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Re: Plug-in for ecobee thermostats in development
« Reply #48 on: January 16, 2014, 03:22:13 pm »
Watou,

This is awesome!.  I'm in the final stages of our new house and this plugin swayed me from the Honeywell 8320zw to ecobee.

As if anyone cares, I installed a two-stage heat pump (with dehum) and a single stage upstairs all by myself.  Today I'm ordering one ecobee smart and one smartSI.  Can't wait to throw the switch and start tinkering with this plugin (pray for no smoke).

I can tell you've put a lot of work into this already. I'm a pretty decent coder with no luup experience yet; given I can find the time I'd like to contribute to improving this plugin. Not likely, so I may have to revert the the paypal button. 

Thanks again Watou!

Offline di33266

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Re: Plug-in for ecobee thermostats in development
« Reply #49 on: January 20, 2014, 05:34:53 pm »
Hi guys
You know by any chance if Ecobee Remote Sensor Module (RSM) would report its sensors' reading to the plugin?
Thank you

Offline watou

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Re: Plug-in for ecobee thermostats in development
« Reply #50 on: January 26, 2014, 07:03:29 am »
This is awesome!.  I'm in the final stages of our new house and this plugin swayed me from the Honeywell 8320zw to ecobee.

As if anyone cares, I installed a two-stage heat pump (with dehum) and a single stage upstairs all by myself.  Today I'm ordering one ecobee smart and one smartSI.  Can't wait to throw the switch and start tinkering with this plugin (pray for no smoke).

I can tell you've put a lot of work into this already. I'm a pretty decent coder with no luup experience yet; given I can find the time I'd like to contribute to improving this plugin. Not likely, so I may have to revert the the paypal button. 

Thanks very much for the kind words.  Your contributions (ideas, code suggestions or dollars) would be appreciated in any measure!  The ecobee thermostats are high quality, especially for the price, and are generally very well respected among contractors as getting the job done right.  My goal is to have the plugin be a solid and capable performer as well.  I hope it works well for you.

You know by any chance if Ecobee Remote Sensor Module (RSM) would report its sensors' reading to the plugin?

I don't know, but I think that if the thermostat is using the RSM instead of the internal sensor, then that would be the data reported over the API to the plugin.  There is no special path in the API to get data from the RSM, so my guess (and it's only a guess) is that this is opaque to API users, and the remote sensor is just used in place of the internal sensor.

I know you can find this answer from the ecobee technical support people fairly quickly.

watou

P.S. Now that I've turned notify back on for this subject, I expect to reply more quickly in future. (Not sure why it was turned off!)



Offline ttmetro

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Re: Plug-in for ecobee thermostats in development
« Reply #51 on: February 21, 2014, 07:03:35 pm »
(Apologies if this question has already been answered somewhere.)

The Ecobee has an optional Zigbee module that in my area can monitor electricity usage reported by my smartmeter.
Question: is this information available in the Vera plugin?

Thanks.

Offline watou

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Re: Plug-in for ecobee thermostats in development
« Reply #52 on: February 24, 2014, 07:15:26 am »
The Ecobee has an optional Zigbee module that in my area can monitor electricity usage reported by my smartmeter.
Question: is this information available in the Vera plugin?

That information is not currently exposed in the ecobee plugin. I don't know if that information is exposed in the API (away from the computer) but if there were a clean way to pass it along to a device in Vera I would consider adding it.

watou


Offline AEBogdan

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Re: Plug-in for ecobee thermostats in development
« Reply #53 on: June 02, 2014, 09:51:08 am »
Our house wake-up times can be 5am, 6:30am, 8:00am, or 8:30am depending on shifting schedules. I would like to automatically schedule our HVAC morning-on time based on our Google Calender entries by using the Google Calendar Vera plug-in.

I'm now shopping for a Vera compatible thermostat.

Does the Ecobee plug-in have the functionality to easily add, remove, or change set-points, or are automated temperature changes implemented only using timed temperature holds and Away/Home mode toggles?

Is the Ecobee SI thermostat good for this task or do other thermostats (like Nest) have features that might work better for this?

Thanks for your expertise.

Offline watou

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Re: Plug-in for ecobee thermostats in development
« Reply #54 on: June 02, 2014, 10:05:52 am »
Our house wake-up times can be 5am, 6:30am, 8:00am, or 8:30am depending on shifting schedules. I would like to automatically schedule our HVAC morning-on time based on our Google Calender entries by using the Google Calendar Vera plug-in.

I'm now shopping for a Vera compatible thermostat.

Does the Ecobee plug-in have the functionality to easily add, remove, or change set-points, or are automated temperature changes implemented only using timed temperature holds and Away/Home mode toggles?

Is the Ecobee SI thermostat good for this task or do other thermostats (like Nest) have features that might work better for this?

Thanks for your expertise.

The two main paths for Ecobee are 1) the "Ecobee way" using their native web interface, or 2) the "Vera" way that involves setting the current setpoints when a schedule (or the Google calendar plugin or PLEG or...) dictates. Setting setpoints with the Ecobee plugin sets an indefinite hold from the current program which can be resumed or you can set the setpoint again. 
Both native Ecobee and Vera approaches have many good features. I think native Ecobee might be more obvious than native Nest, while Vera opens more possibilities, but that's all pretty subjective.
Let us know how it goes.
Regards,


watou


Offline integlikewhoa

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Re: Plug-in for ecobee thermostats in development
« Reply #55 on: June 02, 2014, 10:56:21 am »
Our house wake-up times can be 5am, 6:30am, 8:00am, or 8:30am depending on shifting schedules. I would like to automatically schedule our HVAC morning-on time based on our Google Calender entries by using the Google Calendar Vera plug-in.

I'm now shopping for a Vera compatible thermostat.

Does the Ecobee plug-in have the functionality to easily add, remove, or change set-points, or are automated temperature changes implemented only using timed temperature holds and Away/Home mode toggles?

Is the Ecobee SI thermostat good for this task or do other thermostats (like Nest) have features that might work better for this?

Thanks for your expertise.

I would stick with a zwave thermostat as thats the easiest way to add a thermostat in vera since natively it is zwave. Any zwave thermostat can do this with PLEG and or calender plugin.

Offline watou

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Re: Plug-in for ecobee thermostats in development
« Reply #56 on: June 02, 2014, 02:12:42 pm »
I would stick with a zwave thermostat as thats the easiest way to add a thermostat in vera since natively it is zwave. Any zwave thermostat can do this with PLEG and or calender plugin.

A Z-Wave thermostat may be a good match for AEBogdan's purposes, but is there anything about a Z-Wave thermostat compared to a third-party plugin thermostat that makes it easier to automate?  I was unaware of there being those kinds of differences, but I would love to hear about any.

The Nest plugin has a few more automation triggers than a standard Z-Wave thermostat, while the Ecobee plugin allows access to Ecobee-specific functionality.  Another advantage to an Ecobee or Nest is that there is an independent path (web, apps) to monitor and control it from the vendor (as long as local Wi-Fi is on the Internet), whereas a Z-Wave thermostat is only accessible remotely with Vera.  Of course there are theoretical negatives, such as needing working Internet connectivity to a vendor-supplied web service.  It's complicated. :)

watou

Offline integlikewhoa

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Re: Plug-in for ecobee thermostats in development
« Reply #57 on: June 02, 2014, 03:32:53 pm »
I would stick with a zwave thermostat as thats the easiest way to add a thermostat in vera since natively it is zwave. Any zwave thermostat can do this with PLEG and or calender plugin.

A Z-Wave thermostat may be a good match for AEBogdan's purposes, but is there anything about a Z-Wave thermostat compared to a third-party plugin thermostat that makes it easier to automate?  I was unaware of there being those kinds of differences, but I would love to hear about any.

The Nest plugin has a few more automation triggers than a standard Z-Wave thermostat, while the Ecobee plugin allows access to Ecobee-specific functionality.  Another advantage to an Ecobee or Nest is that there is an independent path (web, apps) to monitor and control it from the vendor (as long as local Wi-Fi is on the Internet), whereas a Z-Wave thermostat is only accessible remotely with Vera.  Of course there are theoretical negatives, such as needing working Internet connectivity to a vendor-supplied web service.  It's complicated. :)

watou

I'm unaware of any more or less that can be done with most of the thermostats. It turns on your a/c or heat and turns it off. (most will handle your multiple stages too but make sure you get the right one for your app)

Now ease of use is where I'm assuming the biggest difference would be. I use PLEG for most if not all my actual automation. When I get home and its night do this this and this and such. The thermostat is only as smart as its sensors and unless the ecobee has more then a humidity and temp sensor (which I havent seen) probley not going to help anyone any more then the rest.
We will take Nest for example. Nest is great for someone without home automation. It doesn't have any more sensors to know if your home or not but it guesses (Vera doesn't guess) if you are depending on previous history. Works great until the day you don't leave the same time you normally do. And if you leave earlier it also doesn't know and runs more then it needs too. It also has schedules just like a z-wave does (which many don't use on the thermostat) but since Vera is controlling it, it's pointless.
So when you get back down to it if Vera is controlling it (which maybe you don't want that, but why need a plugin then) just let vera and its power of multiple temp sensors, motion sensors, outdoor weather plugins, geofencing, google calander, or whatever control it?
As far as backup control, yes a nest or other wifi stat if Vera is down can be controlled over the net threw the manufactures website.
The Net being down is mute as neither option would be able to function, but locally both would function as normal.

I think your point is ease of programming. A nest you pay twice as much or more, hang it on the wall and its does an OK job (guessing) at taking care of it's self. A z-wave you hang it on the wall, but then it does a Great Job but only after you setup PLEG or the like which for some can be difficult.

Offline pmnb

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Re: Plug-in for ecobee thermostats in development
« Reply #58 on: June 02, 2014, 10:13:25 pm »
I would stick with a zwave thermostat as thats the easiest way to add a thermostat in vera since natively it is zwave. Any zwave thermostat can do this with PLEG and or calender plugin.

A Z-Wave thermostat may be a good match for AEBogdan's purposes, but is there anything about a Z-Wave thermostat compared to a third-party plugin thermostat that makes it easier to automate?  I was unaware of there being those kinds of differences, but I would love to hear about any.

The Nest plugin has a few more automation triggers than a standard Z-Wave thermostat, while the Ecobee plugin allows access to Ecobee-specific functionality.  Another advantage to an Ecobee or Nest is that there is an independent path (web, apps) to monitor and control it from the vendor (as long as local Wi-Fi is on the Internet), whereas a Z-Wave thermostat is only accessible remotely with Vera.  Of course there are theoretical negatives, such as needing working Internet connectivity to a vendor-supplied web service.  It's complicated. :)

watou

IMHO, the hybrid (Vera Plugin + vendor app/portal) is a great combination.  You get the benefit of using the Vera to orchestrate multi-device automation, but can also leverage additional analytics and visualization features, such as Nest's energy history UI, through their mobile or web app (although I do wish they would provide us with a way of downloading the history, or accessing it through an API).   A quick look at the Ecobee web site shows similar value-added reporting, etc.
Author of TCPLighting plugin

Offline AEBogdan

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Re: Plug-in for ecobee thermostats in development
« Reply #59 on: June 09, 2014, 09:28:00 am »
Had everything working, but after a reset and restore of Vera (another plug-in locked it up) the Ecobee device lost all communication with the thermostat.

Pressing any button gives an error message like "ecobee: failed to set new hvacMode to off". Tested the thermostat from the Ecobee website and everything works from there, so the thermostat is accessible and working. The "VERA HOME CONTROLLERS" app is still listed as installed. I tried doing the Get PIN process again, but that did not correct the issue.

Is the API interface up and running? If so, is there a way to force a reset of the Ecobee device without deleting and recreating the device or plug-in?