Indicator for outside lights

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I've just wired in four outside lights, each switched separately.

Been thinking it would be good to have an indicator to show if any were on - ie. left on (during the day particularly).

Don't want four separate indicators, just one that would show if any were on. Can anyone think of a simple way of doing this without involving relays and the like?

They're all LEDs, so they're not pulling a great deal, and although I suspect some would say use a PEC so they're not on during the day, as soon as it's dusk. they'd come on, which we don't want.
 
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I've just wired in four outside lights, each switched separately. Been thinking it would be good to have an indicator to show if any were on - ie. left on (during the day particularly). Don't want four separate indicators, just one that would show if any were on. Can anyone think of a simple way of doing this without involving relays and the like? ... They're all LEDs, so they're not pulling a great deal, ...
I can think of all sorts of theoretically possible approaches, but most would be far too complicated for the task!

The problem is that it's AC - were it DC, you would only need diodes! As you sort-of imply, one of the (conceptually, but not practically) 'simplest' method would be to use four relays.

However, although the lights are all individually switched, is there a common feed to all of the switches? If so, the task becomes a lot simpler, since all you then need to do is detect/indicate whether or not any current is flowing though that one feed. At it's simplest, that could be an incandescent bulb, or maybe small transformer (the secondary of which powered the 'indicator') in-line in that feed..

Kind REgards, John
 
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I guess it is energy-saving that you are worrying about? As John has covered, the cost of implementing an alert system would far outweigh the cost of running the odd LED for an hour or two
 
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I have moved from PIR sensors to using smart bulbs, in the main because the PIR would often switch off too soon, or would cause lamps to go on in the wind, but it now means I can park car and switch on lights, I did consider the milkman, who is about the only invited visitor in the dark, but he says he used a head lamp anyway so does not need my lamps. And I am not into providing light for intruders, if they trip over some thing then serves them right.

With zigbee I can set off time, so can set a time that if I have forgotten to turn off lamps they turn off anyway. But have not used that yet, as whole point is it does not turn off at an inopportune moment.
 
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... is there a common feed to all of the switches?
Yes, all on one feed.

What it is, I've installed a 12-gang grid switch, that the 'flood'/wall lights are all switched from, together with other garden lights.

It so happens that there's just one 'way' in the grid plate unused, and it seemed a worthwhile theory that it could be used as an indicator to show if one of the 'wasteful' lights had been left on.

I thought maybe there was something I hadn't considered, but it doesn't seem likely in reality to be a doable task.

It crossed my mind that I suppose there could be four separate LED/neon indicators all mounted behind one lense. I'm not sure how practical that would be, and possibly either if just one was on, it might be hardly noticeable, or if all four were on, it would be exceptionally bright!

It's in my son's house, and if I told him I was even asking question like this, he'd think I was asking question that were way too complicated and unnecessary, and I'm over thinking things (again). ;)
 
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A current transformer on the Live feed to the bank of switches would provide a voltage that could be used to light up an indicator.

The voltage from the current transformer would be AC and vary depending on how much current was flow through the current transformer.

Hence some voltage limiting would be needed to avoid over volting the lamp.

My junk box may have a suitable current transformer, I will have a look over the weekend,
 
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Can you can get double pole switches for your grid? It would make what you want to achieve quite simple as you could just switch a live through each of the "second" poles and take that to the indicator.

1655463237449.png
 
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A current transformer on the Live feed to the bank of switches would provide a voltage that could be used to light up an indicator.
Indeed - that was one of my suggestions.
The voltage from the current transformer would be AC and vary depending on how much current was flow through the current transformer. ... Hence some voltage limiting would be needed to avoid over volting the lamp.
Not necessarily - all that is required in that the indicator is not '"over-volted" when all four lights are on - the indicator would then be lit, but more dimly, if less than four lights were on. That could probably be achieved with an incandescent bulb or, with an appropriate CT, just a diode (or bridge rectifier), resistor and LED or somesuch might we all that was required.

Kind Regards, John
 
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It so happens that there's just one 'way' in the grid plate unused, and it seemed a worthwhile theory that it could be used as an indicator to show if one of the 'wasteful' lights had been left on.
Fair enough - that would make sense.
I thought maybe there was something I hadn't considered, but it doesn't seem likely in reality to be a doable task. .... It crossed my mind that I suppose there could be four separate LED/neon indicators all mounted behind one lense. I'm not sure how practical that would be, and possibly either if just one was on, it might be hardly noticeable, or if all four were on, it would be exceptionally bright!
I doubt that you would find such an animal 'off the shelf'

You've received a number of suggestions. Of them, mikeyd's idea of using DP switch modules is probably the simplest. Although it requires you to buy four new switch modules (plus an indicator module) it would be very simple to implement and would not increase the 'component count' at all (other than the indicator).

Kind Regards, John
 
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I have moved from PIR sensors to using smart bulbs ...
It obviously depends upon what one wants, since the two are obviously functionally totally different. Although you say ...
... And I am not into providing light for intruders, if they trip over some thing then serves them right.
(with which I agree), I think you'll find that the great majority of people who install outdoor PIR lights do do because they want them to come on in the presence of intruders.

Kind Regards, John
 
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... quite simple as you could just switch a live through each of the "second" poles and take that to the indicator.
Of course ... I knew there was a simple solution. Why didn't I think of that? I wasn't thinking logically!

Should have thought about that when I first got the switches. I'll order some more, and do that - Thanks
 
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Can you can get double pole switches for your grid? It would make what you want to achieve quite simple as you could just switch a live through each of the "second" poles and take that to the indicator.

View attachment 272338
It's late, I haven't drawn this out for myself, but wouldn't this work exactly the same if it it was all wired into four single pole switches?
 
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Surely that would have the same effect as using double pole switches, would it not?
 

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