Sunday, November 11, 2012

Smartmeter III - blinking LEDs

This is a short one. At least compared to the usual walls of text I post.

Due to the nature of my water heater (a continuous-flow-type), it's power consumption is highly dependent on the water pressure and flow-speed. The more and faster the water flows, the more power it consumes. Apparently this happens in three stages. The first two turn on immediately as you turn on warm water. But the third will only com on if needed, i.e. if the water consumption continues to increase. Also these three stages are connected to three different mains lines, which means, they get counted separately.

Saving energy, resources and money is fine, but sacrificing creature comforts for it? No way!
When I take a shower I want it hot. And I don't want it trickling down on me, either.

That's not a problem with my new water (and thus electricity) saving shower head. What is a problem, though, is that the water flow has to be adjusted just right to keep the third (and greediest) stage of the water heater from turning on.

So to be able to see what the water heater is up to, while in the shower, I built this little thingy:

It's just a Jeenode with a few LEDs

The yellow, green and white LEDs blink if there's a pulse received for one of the three mains lines, and the red one will blink if a packed got lost. Right now it's powered with a single AA battery, but that lasts only a couple of days, so I'll have to add a little power supply, probably from an old phone, since I have plenty of those.

The code to drive it is here:

https://github.com/alibenpeng/powerblinker.git

No comments:

Post a Comment