This article explains how to re-wire a Heath® Zenith motion activated floodlight, model SL-5412, with an Insteon In-LineLinc Relay #2475S2 for automation of home lighting. This technique should work for most motion activated floodlights, for example the Heath Zenith Model # SL-5318.
The benefits of an In-LineLinc On/Off relay in a floodlight are:
- Ability to sense when motion is detected and turn on other lights.
- Remotely turn ON/OFF the floodlight under program control or via the web.
- Operate the floodlight on a daily schedule and/or dim the light until motion is sensed.
- The floodlight still operates normally when the motion sensor is activated.
The Insteon In-LineLinc is an ON/OFF relay module with a 120VAC sense input that is ideal for integrating with a Passive Infra-Red (PIR) motion sensor as commonly found on security floodlights. The User Guide is well written with detailed wiring diagrams.
Update: The Insteon In-LineLinc Relay #2475S2 model has been discontinued. The newer In-LineLinc 2475SDB lacks the yellow “sense” wire which connects to the floodlight infrared motion sensor output so the floodlight turn On if it senses motion. The alternate way to solve the problem is to purchase a:
- Basic floodlight without the PIR (motion) sensor.
- In-LineLinc 2475SDB On/Off relay.
- Insteon 2842-222 Wireless Motion Sensor
- Universal Devices ISY994i INSTEON Automation Controller – optional but provides great flexibility for programming scenes.
The revised solution is explained in Automate Exterior Lights with an Insteon Wireless Motion Sensor.
Heath Zenith Floodlight Compatibility
The In-LineLinc is compatible with the PIR motion sensor on “standard” Heath Zenith floodlights (e.g. models SL-5412, SL-5408) as widely sold through home improvement stores. However, in my experience the In-LineLinc does not work with those Heath Zenith models having the Dual-Brite patented dimming feature. So be sure to get a floodlight without Dual-Brite.
The following involves working with 120 volt AC electricity that can kill, main or shock the daylights out of you! If you don’t know what you’re doing and how to comply with the electrical building code regulations, then stop and hire a professional licensed electrician.
Preparing the Floodlight
This is a brand new out of the box Heath Zenith #SL-5412-WH floodlight showing the wiring connections. The first thing to do is unbundled the wires by removing the two wire nuts as indicated by the red arrows in the following photo.
Note: This will probably void your product warranty! But it’s a ~$27.00 unit and are you really going to keep the receipt, box it up and mail it back to the manufacturer after 2, 3 or 5 years for warranty replacement if it breaks? Have you noticed those computerized cash register receipts tend to fade to the point it’s unreadable after a year or two? When I buy a really important item, I make a copy of the receipt to have a document that lasts.
The wire nut is crimped flat on two sides. Use pliers to uncrimp it and make the metal part round (or squarish) to release the wires.
After uncrimping the wire nut, pull gently to remove. This is what you have after the two wire nuts are released – see the red squares.
Untwist the red and white wires to separate the motion sensor wires from the lights. Discard the short white pigtail wire.
What you now have are:
- Motion sensor wires – all operate at 120VAC:
– Black (line)
– White (neutral)
– Red (sense), output is zero volts when no motion is present, 120 volts when motion is sensed.
- Light socket wires
– Red (hot) x 2
– White (neutral) x 2
Weatherproof Electrical Box
I chose the Red Dot (by Thomas & Betts) weatherproof aluminum electrical box to mount the floodlight to an exterior wall. These are available at Home Depot. It was necessary to combine a base box with an extension unit to make room for the In-LineLinc. The Red Dot D-Pak® Dry-tite® part numbers are:
Here are the two items:
The extension box comes with mounting screws, weather gasket and plugs for unused outlets.
The brass mounting bar for the floodlight fits perfectly and held by two screws in the normal way.
Trial fitting the foam weather gasket to seal between the electrical box and floodlight.
Installing the Floodlight and Wiring the In-LineLinc Relay
First, shut off the power to the floodlight circuit at the main electrical box. Do not rely on the ON/OFF light switch.
In the next photo, I’ve removed the old floodlight. The old floodlight was installed by perhaps the same numbnut electrician that wired my other light switch (search for ‘numbnut’ in that article). My guess the guy who installed the old floodlight cut the wire too short and drilled a new hole with only 2 inches of wire poking out. The floodlight was mounted directly to the wall without an outlet box. Another example of sloppy work by the lowest bidder!
The way to correct this error is caulk the unused holes and wire 8 inch long pigtails as shown:
The new electrical box is mounted to the wall with two screws and the wires nutted together. The back of the box was sealed against the wall with a length 1/2 inch thick foam weatherstrip to keep out rain and bugs.
The In-LineLinc and floodlight wiring connections are made per the floodlight wiring diagram on page 5 of the 2475S2 User Guide. The 2475S2 wiring connections are:
- Bare copper ground wires all wire nutted together.
- Black (hot) house line wire to the In-LineLinc black “line” and red “switch-in” wires.
The black house line wire is connected to a standard On/Off toggle wall switch on my home. It’s important to leave the wall switch On so the In-LineLinc is always powered for remote Insteon control.
- White (neutral) wires all nutted together.
- Floodlight lamp red wires nutted to the In-LineLinc red “switch-out” wire.
- The floodlight PIR red sensor wire is connected to the In-LineLinc Yellow “sense” wire.
If the floodlight PIR sensor senses motion it will signal the In-LineLinc to turn On the floodlight. Or you can remotely command the floodlight with an Insteon controller to turn On or Off the light.
The In-LineLinc and wires are gently folded and pressed into the electrical box. The floodlight is fastened with a large screw to the center hole of the brass mounting bar. Not shown for clarity is the foam weatherseal between the box and floodlight.
I found it necessary to shorten the 2 inch long mounting screw by about 3/4 inches with a Dremel tool cutoff wheel, because the screw was so long that it hit the body of the In-LineLinc. Do not use bolt cutters because it will damage the threads.
The light is now fully assembled and ready for use.
Device Linking and Floodlight Scene
A different floodlight by the kitchen door is controlled by a ToggleLinc On/Off wall switch. I linked the lower deck floodlight containing the In-LineLinc (responder) to the ToggleLinc (controller) via the ISY Insteon Home Automation Controller Administrative Console via a scene named “Kitchen Deck Floodlight”.
The way the two floodlights work is:
- The newly installed deck stair floodlight (i.e. In-LineLinc) turns ON/OFF when the motion sensor is triggered.
- The deck stair floodlight turns ON when the kitchen floodlight (ToggleLinc switch) is manually turned ON by flipping the switch via the scene. This lights up the main deck and stairs together on opposite ends of the house. Very convenient!
Other cool things to do are an ALL ON command and writing programs to turn on other lights when motion is sensed by the In-LineLinc floodlight. I also can control everything via any Internet connection and web browser, too!
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