How to Wire Two Floodlights to an In-LineLinc Relay

My garage has a motion sensor floodlight on the corner by the driveway. I upgraded the garage floodlights by:

  1. Install an Insteon In-LineLinc Relay for home automation.
  2. Add a 2nd slaved floodlight at the other end of the garage. The slaved floodlight operates with the primary motion floodlight under control of the In-LineLinc.

The details are given in this wiring diagram – click to view a full size image.

Master/Slave Floodlight Wiring Diagram with In-LineLinc

Master/Slave Floodlight Wiring Diagram with In-LineLinc

How to Wire Two Floodlights to an In-LineLinc Relay

In a prior articled, I described How to Wire a Motion Activated Floodlight with an Insteon In-LineLinc Relay, which is the simple way to install an In-LineLinc.

The garage installation here is different because I didn’t want to “double up” and use an extra deep junction box for appearances sake; and I wanted to hookup a 2nd floodlight at the other end of the garage as a “slave” unit.

The solution is to run an extra 14/2 NM wire cable from the motion sensor floodlight to the In-LineLinc inside the attic for the “line” (hot) and “sense” (red/yellow) wires. It is helpful to study the above wiring diagram.

Electrical Safety

Working with 120VAC electricity can kill or maim you, burn down the house or deliver an electrical shock that you’ll never forget! If you haven’t studied home electrical wiring, lack a solid knowledge of the electrical building code regulations and don’t know what you are doing, then stop! Hire a professional electrician!

In-LineLinc Relay Installation and Wiring

The Heath Zenith #SL-5412 motion sensor floodlight is located at the corner eave of the garage. The floodlight mounted on a white alumimun electrical box that is too shallow to contain the In-LineLinc.

Garage Motion Sensor Floodlight

Garage Motion Sensor Floodlight

This is the view inside the attic showing the original NM 14/2 wire to the floodlight. The floodlight is controlled by a light switch inside the house. This wire will be rerouted to a new junction box inside the attic.

Original Floodlight NM 14/2 Wire run inside the Attic

Original Floodlight NM 14/2 Wire run inside the Attic

I began by:

  1. Shutting off the power to the circuit at the main electrical panel.
  2. Removing the floodlight and junction box to expose the original wire as shown below.
  3. Two (2) new 12 foot long lengths of NM 14/2 were cut, taped to the original wire, and pulled into the attic as the original wire is removed. Before pulling, both ends of one cable was marked with a red pen to identify which cable will be the the load & sense wire (see wiring diagram). You need to mark both ends of the same cable.
Removing the Original Floodlight Wires

Removing the Original Floodlight Wires

The two new NM 14/2 cables are shown after pulling into the attic. Note the red identification mark on the cable to be used for the motion sensor line/sense wires.

Two (2) new NM 14/2 Cables Pulled into the Attic

Two (2) new NM 14/2 Cables Pulled into the Attic

The four cables are brought into a newly installed electrical junction box as shown. Each cable is identified with a permanent marker. Note the neutral (white) wire for the of the load/sense cable has been recoded as yellow (lower left) using a permanent marker. This yellow wire will connect to the sense wire of the In-LineLinc, the other end of this wire will be connected the motion sensor red wire.

New Electrical Junction Box with each Cable Identifed

New Electrical Junction Box with each Cable Identifed

The wires are sorted and stripped as shown:

Stripping Wires

Stripping Wires

The junction box wiring for the In-LineLinc, motion floodlight and slave floodlight is complete. The wires enter the junction box from top and bottom in the same arrangement as shown in the wiring diagram. Note that the red load wire of the In-LineLinc is connected to the lamps in both floodlights. The In-LineLinc is rated to 480 watts and my lights use a total of four (4) 26 watt compact fluorescent bulbs for a total load of only 104 watts.

Completed In-LineLinc and Floodlight Junction Box Wiring

Completed In-LineLinc and Floodlight Junction Box Wiring

Here’s another view of the In-LineLinc wiring:

Floodlight and In-LineLinc Wiring

Floodlight and In-LineLinc Wiring

Floodlight Wiring

Two (2) new runs of NM 14/2 electrical cable enter the floodlight junction box as shown. Note the red/yellow marking on the line/sense cable that was made before the new cables were pulled into the attic. The white (neutral) wire has been recoded yellow here as well with a permanent marker to correspond with recoded yellow end inside the attic.

Two (2) NM 14/2 Cables at the Floodlight Junction Box

Two (2) NM 14/2 Cables at the Floodlight Junction Box

The floodlight is wired and mounted to the outlet box. Note the floodlight red (motion sense) wire is connected to the yellow (sense) wire that feeds to the yellow (sense) input of the In-LineLinc inside the attic. Refer to the wiring diagram for details.

Floodlight Wiring

Floodlight Wiring

In-LineLinc Final Installation and Testing

The circuit breaker is turned back on (make sure the light switch is on, too!) and the In-LineLinc and floodlights tested for correct operation. My testing consided of:

  1. Manually turning ON/OFF the floodlight via the small buttons on the face of the In-LineLinc.
  2. Remotely turning ON/OFF the floodlight via the ISY-99i Admin Console.
  3. Putting the motion sensor in Test Mode and walking around.

Everything tested A-OK!

Testing the In-LineLinc and Floodlights

Testing the In-LineLinc and Floodlights

The wires and In-LineLinc are carefully packed inside the electrical junction box.

Packing the Junction Box for Closure

Packing the Junction Box for Closure

The metal junction box cover is fastened with two screws. Take care that the In-LineLinc buttons are not touching the box cover!

Metal Cover affixed to the Junction Box

Metal Cover affixed to the Junction Box

Here’s how the new junction box and cables are arranged. Click for a larger image.

Junction Box Electrical Cables

Junction Box Electrical Cables

Next Steps

Now I’m ready to do fun things like linking with other Insteon devices, create scenes for coordinated lighting and ISY-99i programs.

Take Care,

Bob Jackson

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7 Responses to How to Wire Two Floodlights to an In-LineLinc Relay

  1. BobMarche June 11, 2009 at 12:30 am #

    Thanks for the useful info. It’s so interesting

  2. Henk February 6, 2010 at 12:50 pm #

    Great article, thanks.
    Just wondering about one thing.
    Doesn’t the wire to the floodlight round box need to have a clamp? If so, isn’t a clamp only allowed to contain a single wire, not two?

    • Bob Jackson February 6, 2010 at 6:39 pm #

      A Romex NM cable clamp could be threaded into the center hole as I did for the crawl space junction box in the Basement Bathroom wiring. I didn’t use a cable clamp here because the original floodlight installation – and all the others I’ve replaced on the house – omitted the NM cable clamp. A clamp isn’t a bad idea, but you’d have to install it on the outside of the junction box and tighten the clamp screws before mounting the junction box to the soffit, while allowing for several inches of extra cable to make it all work. Maybe this is why a clamp wasn’t used elsewhere by the original builder?

      > If so, isn’t a clamp only allowed to contain a single wire, not two?
      The product package will state the quantity and sizes of cable that will fit. For instance, the Gampak NM Cable Connector 3/8″ – 1/2″ (Mfg #: 45650) packages states:

      “Fits 1/2″ Knockout, For One or Two 14-2 to 12-2 Nonmetallic Sheathed Cable and 0.29 to 0.45 Diameter Flexible Cords”.

  3. Joe April 23, 2010 at 12:28 pm #

    Hi,

    How about the part to show us how to connect the floodligth wiring to the house main box. Thank you

    • Bob Jackson April 23, 2010 at 2:08 pm #

      What I did is spliced into the existing house wiring by adding a new junction box mid-span. The original wire span is shown in this photo:

      Original Floodlight NM 14/2 Wire run inside the Attic

      and the wires are label in this photo with the new junction box (see the original image in the article for zoomable view):

      New Electrical Junction Box with each Cable Identifed

      A good overview of installing new electrical wiring for lights and switches is given in the Basement Bathroom Series – see Part 14.

      Let me know if I answered your question.

  4. carl September 6, 2010 at 7:00 pm #

    hi i need a diagram of how to connect the wires to the light switch . this is what i have i have two sets of flood light on two corners of my house . i have 6 wires in the junction box 2 black,2 white, and 2 ground wires. i did not take this apart so i dont know which one goes to what screw the switch has .one black screw, one grenn screw and the other two at brass . if you could please help me out . thank you so much for your time and knowledge

    carl

    • Bob Jackson September 7, 2010 at 7:08 am #

      This curious, with two flood lights controlled by the same light switch there should be three NM/2 cables with 9 conductors (i.e. 9 wires) total meeting at the junction box as so:

      A) Circuit Breaker --- Switch --- Junction Box --- Floodlight
                                               +--- Floodlight
      


      You may have this configuration:

      
      B) Circuit Breaker --- Switch --- Junction Box ---Floodlight
                                 +--- Floodlight
      


      or possibly this if to splice together shorter sections of cable:

      
      C) Circuit Breaker --- Switch --- Junction Box --- Junction Box --- Floodlight
                                                +--- Floodlight
      
      

      First thing you need to do is figure out which wires are “hot”, that is, which set of wires in the NM14/2 cable go back to the light switch and circuit breaker panel. Turn on the lights at the wall switch, then find the circuit breaker that feeds the lights. Turn that breaker off. Verify there’s no power at the junction box with a voltage tester. Now separate the two cables; each cable has 3 wires – black (hot), neutral (white) and ground (bare copper). Cap the wire ends with an electrical nut for safety. Make sure the wires are not touching anything. Turn on the power at the circuit breaker, then identify which is the supply wire coming from the switch with the voltage tester. Check if one of the lights is on. If it’s on, then you’ve got scenario B where the lights are wired into the swtich or scenario C where there’s another junction box upstream of the one you’re working on. I’ve seen some goober wiring jobs, so don’t trust anything until you’ve traced it all out.

      Besides the wiring diagram above, this other diagram may be helpful:
      http://www.handymanhowto.com/2009/02/16/finishing-a-basement-bathroom-part-14/

      Be safe!

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