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General => Lighting & Load Control => Topic started by: johnes on April 22, 2014, 07:09:08 pm

Title: Installation cost
Post by: johnes on April 22, 2014, 07:09:08 pm
Living in MI, new build... what's a somewhat reasonable fair cost for installing zwave receptacles (enerwave) and aeotec smart switches?

I got a quote for $22 for the recepacles (each) and $45 for the switches (each).

Seems really high... Thoughts?
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: SirMeili on April 22, 2014, 07:12:56 pm
Living in MI, new build... what's a somewhat reasonable fair cost for installing zwave receptacles (enerwave) and aeotec smart switches?

I got a quote for $22 for the recepacles (each) and $45 for the switches (each).

Seems really high... Thoughts?

$22 for z-wave receptacles is actually pretty low. The lowest I've found are around $35-40 per outlet. Where are you getting the enerwave outlets for $22/each?

$45 for the aeon micro switches/dimmers is about right.

EDIT: I think I misunderstood. I thought you were talking about price for the switches and outlets, now I see you mean installation of them. That does seem high, but it might depend on how long it takes them.
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: integlikewhoa on April 22, 2014, 07:13:00 pm
Living in MI, new build... what's a somewhat reasonable fair cost for installing zwave receptacles (enerwave) and aeotec smart switches?

I got a quote for $22 for the recepacles (each) and $45 for the switches (each).

Seems really high... Thoughts?

Why would switches be double a receptacle? They running a neutral if its not there?
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: integlikewhoa on April 22, 2014, 07:14:32 pm
$22 for z-wave receptacles is actually pretty low. The lowest I've found are around $35-40 per outlet. Where are you getting the enerwave outlets for $22/each?

$45 for the aeon micro switches/dimmers is about right.

I think he is talking about installing labor cost only, not cost of the device.
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: johnes on April 22, 2014, 07:19:33 pm
Yeah, was talking about installation, not parts :)  If I could find them that cheap, I'd buy all of them and become a reseller :)

As for the sockets, I guess I don't understand what is different between installing a normal socket and a zwave one... is there any diff?
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: SirMeili on April 22, 2014, 07:27:43 pm
No difference. You should ask them how much to install a regular receptacle. It could be they charge $22 to do it (in an existing home). The Microswitches are a bit harder so it makes sense they cost more (harder from the perspective of an electrician that's never done one before).

Is this a new home or an existing home?

Also, I just thought of this, they could arguably argue that because the outlet is bigger it's more of a hassle to get back into the box. The outlets are deeper than normal receptacles and I've had a few that barely fit in the existing box.
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: integlikewhoa on April 22, 2014, 07:32:03 pm
Yeah, was talking about installation, not parts :)  If I could find them that cheap, I'd buy all of them and become a reseller :)

As for the sockets, I guess I don't understand what is different between installing a normal socket and a zwave one... is there any diff?

By socket you mean receptacle/outlet or switch? The receptacle/outlet..... z-wave or not is no different. Hot, neutral and a bare ground wire.
The switch depends if its dimming or not really.

Dimming: requires 3 wires. Hot coming in, switched hot going out to the light or load and a bare ground.
On/Off only switch: Same as above plus a Neutral wire. 

Depending how the circuit was ran in your house (each light or house might be different) you may have a white neutral wire in the back of the box not hooked up to the current switch or you could have no neutral in the box.

If you wanted a ON/OFF only in a box that had no neutral then you in for a bit of work. There are several ways around this tho.

First is to determine what switch you want and where then check to see what that box has.  It could be a cake walk or could present problems. 45.00 for run a neutral down a wall seems to cheap so I'm going to say that's not it. 45.00 to attach a neutral that's already in the box seems expensive.

22.00 for a receptacle/outlet seems good although I would do it myself of-course as one room could be 100.00 easy and I can do it in a few min.

EDIT: I agree with "SirMeili" I think the extra 23.00 is just to stuff that extra controller in the box.

Any reason you going with micro controllers over actual switches?

And wiring still stands... You need a neutral for for ON\OFF micro switches too, so in existing construction possible you don't have a neutral in the switch box.
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: curiousB on April 22, 2014, 08:42:01 pm

Living in MI, new build... what's a somewhat reasonable fair cost for installing zwave receptacles (enerwave) and aeotec smart switches?

I got a quote for $22 for the recepacles (each) and $45 for the switches (each).

Seems really high... Thoughts?

Well if the work is yet to be done I would argue no up charge to install a ZWave device over conventional receptacle or switch. There would be a reasonable case for an up charge if the person were having to enroll the stuff and test it on Vera but I assume you'll do that.

If this is just contractor revenue grab have them install standard stuff and then bring in an electrician for a morning on your dime after you move in to swap out the ones you are changing. Pay him cash so he gives you a good hourly rate.

If new build be sure neutral wire is in every box throughout (I think this is code now anyway but not sure). Also might be a case to ask for larger boxes in case you want to use Aeotec DSC modules for some items.



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Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: integlikewhoa on April 22, 2014, 08:57:32 pm

Well if the work is yet to be done I would argue no up charge to install a ZWave device over conventional receptacle

If new build be sure neutral wire is in every box throughout (I think this is code now anyway but not sure).

Also might be a case to ask for larger boxes in case you want to use Aeotec DSC modules for some


Just barely saw it was a NEW construction and couldn't agree more with the above. But I do think the upcharge is because you still need to install a standard switch but on top that you also need to install a 6 wire Aeotec modual for each switch. They figure (and they are right) it's twice as much work (not that it was much work to start with). 
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: johnes on April 22, 2014, 09:03:24 pm
Quote

Any reason you going with micro controllers over actual switches?

And wiring still stands... You need a neutral for for ON\OFF micro switches too, so in existing construction possible you don't have a neutral in the switch box.

It's a new build, so I believe that a neutral is required where I live, but am confirming that tomorrow.

As for controllers over switches... do you have any recs?  Most of the ones I have found are rather ugly, and thought that going with the micro switch would give me flexibility in the actual flip thing that I can use.
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: integlikewhoa on April 22, 2014, 09:55:19 pm

As for controllers over switches... do you have any recs?  Most of the ones I have found are rather ugly, and thought that going with the micro switch would give me flexibility in the actual flip thing that I can use.

I guess I have the ugly ones. LOL
I use GE and they look the same or better then the ones they replaced. Rectangle and flat. but these ones have a blue light that makes them look even better. LOL

Not sure what you mean by "flip thing".  EDIT: I guess you ment switch, and your right it will

Only thing I don't like with the using micro switch is the flip switch could be up with the light off or could be down with the light off.
I got a vacation house with so many 3 way switches everywhere and you never know which pattern is currently going to turn off the lights. You can turn all switches down a light still be on.  Gets confusing after a bit especially for a new person in the house.  And call me anal but with everything off I hate looking a 3 side by side switches and one is facing up while the other 2 are down. That's what will happen with a micro switch.

I only have one micro switch in a walk in pantry. I didn't want a dimmer and didn't have a neutral or easy way to get one down to it. So I installed this micro switch in the CAN light. The switch is inside the Pantry and I don't really use it. It's set with  door sensor to come on and off or time out if the door is left on to long. 
Title: Installation cost
Post by: curiousB on April 22, 2014, 10:44:36 pm
....And call me anal but with everything off I hate looking a 3 side by side switches and one is facing up while the other 2 are down. That's what will happen with a micro switch.....

!?!!!  That happens everywhere when you have 3 and 4 way switches.... Up is on up is off, depends what the other switch is sitting at. Life must be good if that really is a pet peeve....

Aeons can be (optionally) wired to a push button type switch instead of a toggle type if you want a push on push off operation......


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Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: integlikewhoa on April 22, 2014, 11:25:16 pm
!?!!!  That happens everywhere when you have 3 and 4 way switches.... Up is on up is off, depends what the other switch is sitting at. Life must be good if that really is a pet peeve....

Only old 3-ways. Not one of my 3 or 4 way z-wave switches do that.

Aeons can be (optionally) wired to a push button type switch instead of a toggle type if you want a push on push off operation......

Yea I know, OP is right if he wants a certain switch nothing wrong with Micro Switch.

But for me it I like the normal switches and you can get them for 30.00 (paid 45.00 on amazon for my Microswitch) at my local Lowes, eaiser to install, don't need to by a normal switch and easier to warranty if needed. Installation altho a bit harder with the micro switch is not really an issue.
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: Vodden on April 23, 2014, 12:00:51 am
Paying anything extra for installing z-wave wall switches in particular, seems ridiculous.  It's a straight up swap for single switch applications, and n-way circuits are Simple Simon compared to their hard-wired brethren.  I could see a bit extra for micro switches and dimmers, as I'm guessing most electricians haven't wired them before, but really only the first one should take any extra time or effort.   
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: prim8 on April 23, 2014, 02:11:44 pm
!?!!!  That happens everywhere when you have 3 and 4 way switches.... Up is on up is off, depends what the other switch is sitting at. Life must be good if that really is a pet peeve....

Only old 3-ways. Not one of my 3 or 4 way z-wave switches do that.


How does that work if you don't turn it off with the same switch you turned it on with?
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: DeltaNu1142 on April 23, 2014, 03:43:29 pm
I hope I'm not the only one whose head spins while reading this thread.  :-\

Leviton Vizia (RF or not) allow for a three-way installation and they always return to neutral...  meaning, the pad on the bottom of the switch toggles the light on or off.

And charging any more for the installation of a Z-wave switch over a normal switch for a new construction resembles usury. You could argue that both Z-wave switches and receptacles are larger and require some more manipulation of the wiring in the box, but the prices you're quoting are around an 100% upcharge? That's nuts.
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: integlikewhoa on April 23, 2014, 04:48:42 pm
How does that work if you don't turn it off with the same switch you turned it on with?

The switches are momentary. It sits in the middle so to speak. When you press up it returns to the middle when you let go. Si they always sit in the same spot weather they are on or off.   
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: integlikewhoa on April 23, 2014, 04:56:09 pm

Leviton Vizia (RF or not) allow for a three-way installation and they always return to neutral...  meaning, the pad on the bottom of the switch toggles the light on or off.

So would you suggest a Leviton Vizia non RF and a aeotec Smart Microswitch to go with it? Or would you just install a Vizia RF switch?

And charging any more for the installation of a Z-wave switch over a normal switch for a new construction resembles usury.

This is because he is requesting to install a Aeotec Smart Microswitch in the wall along with a normal switch. That's double install and over double the wire connections then just installing a Z-wave switch vs. a non RF switch.
But if he don't like any of the available z-wave switches this is his only solution.

Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: SirMeili on April 23, 2014, 04:59:42 pm
How does that work if you don't turn it off with the same switch you turned it on with?

The switches are momentary. It sits in the middle so to speak. When you press up it returns to the middle when you let go. Si they always sit in the same spot weather they are on or off.   

This is why I like Leviton switches. I realize that all z-wave ones are like this as well. I just happen to use Leviton. What I, personally, like best about levitons is that they are the same no matter when you turn them on or off, you just hit the bottom*. Though to be honest, that confuses most guests that visit.

<off topic>
*Of course this was before I found that it might be possible to double tap the top and get Vera to get the instant status twice do do some cool automation. I'm still not 100% sure you can do that with switches like Coopers (which have instant status and have a separate on/off areas on the switch), but if you could and it would work, I like that. For instance, double tap on to turn on all lights in a room or something like that.
</off topic>
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: NomisR on April 23, 2014, 05:56:47 pm
How does that work if you don't turn it off with the same switch you turned it on with?

The switches are momentary. It sits in the middle so to speak. When you press up it returns to the middle when you let go. Si they always sit in the same spot weather they are on or off.   

This is why I like Leviton switches. I realize that all z-wave ones are like this as well. I just happen to use Leviton. What I, personally, like best about levitons is that they are the same no matter when you turn them on or off, you just hit the bottom*. Though to be honest, that confuses most guests that visit.

<off topic>
*Of course this was before I found that it might be possible to double tap the top and get Vera to get the instant status twice do do some cool automation. I'm still not 100% sure you can do that with switches like Coopers (which have instant status and have a separate on/off areas on the switch), but if you could and it would work, I like that. For instance, double tap on to turn on all lights in a room or something like that.
</off topic>

You can double tap the top of Levitons for scene functions?  Is that only for standard switches because I don't see that with the dimmers.  I haven't had a chance to install my standard switches though.
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: SirMeili on April 23, 2014, 06:33:51 pm

You can double tap the top of Levitons for scene functions?  Is that only for standard switches because I don't see that with the dimmers.  I haven't had a chance to install my standard switches though.

No, you cannot. The Levitons only push on the bottom (it's a "toggle" on/off). Cooper switches though have an on (top) and off (bottom). So you can press the top twice and the load will stay on. I had some non z-wave switches that acted differently depending on how many presses. It was my thinking that if a cooper switch had distinct on and off presses, then you could double tap "on" and it might be possible for the Vera to see that On was pressed twice*. If this is so, you could do some interesting stuff.

* I have no idea if the Coooper will do an instant status for each button press, but if it did, then you could do this stuff. I haven't researched it because if I found out you could do that, I would highly consider selling my Levitons and putting in Coopers just for this. Once again, I have NO CLUE if coopers will do this, it's just a supposition I had.
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: Katmai on April 23, 2014, 11:29:23 pm
All of my Coopers only have one physical button behind the "paddle" plate. Its near the middle from what I remember. I have various models and none of them do any kind of double press anywhere. No matter where you press (or double press), the first press always activates the switch. So double pressing just makes it turn on and off quickly. They are instant status as previously mentioned.
Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: SirMeili on April 23, 2014, 11:46:39 pm
All of my Coopers only have one physical button behind the "paddle" plate. Its near the middle from what I remember. I have various models and none of them do any kind of double press anywhere. No matter where you press (or double press), the first press always activates the switch. So double pressing just makes it turn on and off quickly. They are instant status as previously mentioned.

OK.. I figure the coopers had a distinct on and off. My bad completely. It must be the GEs that do it then? But then no instant status.

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Title: Re: Installation cost
Post by: Vodden on April 24, 2014, 01:13:18 am
As for controllers over switches... do you have any recs?  Most of the ones I have found are rather ugly, and thought that going with the micro switch would give me flexibility in the actual flip thing that I can use.

Linear/Evolve are very basic and simple.  A 'center position' rocker that looks like it is half way between on and off all the time.  Click the top, light on.  Click the bottom, light off.  Genius really.  They have dimmers, switches, and controllers.  Full range of 'normal' colors, including black.  Also the least expensive.  Word on the street is that factory support isn't the greatest, but If you check the threads on here the capabilities of these products have been exhaustively tested.  I currently have 9 Linear switches/dimmers/controllers on order but they haven't shown up yet.  I am not expecting any surprises after reading up on them as much as I have. 

Micro switches are pretty sweet too, but make switch boxes a little tight.  I have 8-10 planned for my build, but they are all getting installed in the receptacle octagon box where there's a little extra room.  Trying to stuff a micro dimmer in a switch box with a z-wave controller might not work out so well...