Starting over with the Sense Home Energy Monitor (day 1)

I’ve been on and off disappointed and very enthused with the Sense Home Energy Monitor. I’ve been using it since May/June 2017 it appears and while it’s been useful (discovered bad thermostat on water heater, found a couple of oddly high-energy devices,) and it has saved me money over what the purchase cost would have been, it hasn’t been perfect.

TL;DR – what it’s like to start over and chuck about 3.5 years of data on Sense.

A while back I talked with Sense about their new circuit monitors and tried them out. This brought me back on the radar of Sense and we discovered that there was something wrong with my initial sensors. They shipped some replacement sensor extenders with gel and my Sense device suddenly got a lot less predictable.

Throw in a blown breaker, a power outage, and some electrical panel work, and I was running with a system that Sense increasingly did not recognize.

I got a warning a week or so ago that the device was convinced one of the clamps was no longer closed. This was after a breaker blew. It wanted me to call an electrician, reseat the clamps, reset the Sense data, and learn from scratch.

After spending months in 2017 identifying devices this… was not appealing to me to say the least. I reseated things, powered it off and on again, did a little dance in my basement, and decided yeah, it was time to kiss the data goodbye. Most of what I’m monitoring these days is behind some of the TP-Link Kasa Power Strips, and that would be picked up (I hoped,) when the Sense unit rebooted.

It wasn’t… for like seven seconds and then it was… but that first glance was a tad scary.

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Anyway, I cleared the Sense data, did not do the Flex Sensor setup as I’m moving the sensors later today, and let the Sense unit start again. This morning I woke up to the notice it had discovered the stove and something it wanted to call Heat 1.

I flew to the stove (long story about a morning pot of water omitted,) and turned it on and sure enough Stove registered. Whoo hoo.

And then it disappeared into the Other… booo… it did find it for a minute though which was cool. The Kasa devices are plugging along normally. I’m not sure what Heat 1 is as it hasn’t popped up yet. And I’m pulling a lot more power than I’m accustomed to without knowing what it is (assuming water heater going at the moment.)

Sense discovered the Always On and has it within about 50 watts of what it normally was. My assumption is I’ll see that drop a bit.

This is going to be interesting as one of my projects involves a Firman Tri-Fuel generator, which is why I’m moving one of the Flex sensors. Not sure how that’s going to work out really as I’m going to have to power things off from the main first. I guess Sense will just wake up to generator power.

So, the first 24 hours ends, my Kasas worked, I’ve got a power meter, and a lead on a couple of devices.

The Sense Home Energy Monitor can be purchased and make Pocketables some money here. Or just open up a browser, search for it.

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Paul E King

Paul King started with GoodAndEVO in 2011, which merged with Pocketables, and as of 2018 he's evidently the owner. He lives in Nashville, works at a film production company, is married with two kids. Facebook | Twitter | Donate | More posts by Paul | Subscribe to Paul's posts

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