Hi Mike,

By "the zone is on" I mean that the zone is calling for heat.

You might be able to use some kind of current sensor to detect when the burner is burning.  Also, my boiler has two control boxes on it, and one has a couple LEDs inside of it.  I believe they may come on when the zones call for heat, like the LEDs you have on the panel.  So if you have any control boxes try taking a peek inside for more LEDs.  Incidentally, I think most of the controls for my boiler are made by Honeywell, including the box on the burner where the LED I'm monitoring is.

-Ben

On 3/26/07, storemike <storemike@yahoo.com> wrote:
Hi Ben,

thanks for the info and tip regarding parts.  I ordered the DS9097U
and 5 of the DS2405 switches.

I watched the LEDs on my furnace, and it looked like they were only
lit when the burner was actually burning oil.  I'll pay more
attention to it next time I'm down there.  What do you mean by "the
zone is on"?  Zone 2 (the one I used to check the LEDs) is alwas set
low, but is still what I'd consider "on", and the corresponding LED
came on as soon as the burner started (about 30 seconds after I
cranked up the thermostat for zone 2).  My burner has no LED on the
front, but there are 3 LEDs on a panel to the left, where one is
power and the other two are for the zones.


Thanks again,
Mike
--- In misterhouse@yahoogroups.com, "Ben Griffith" <griffithba@...>
wrote:
>
> Hi Mike,
>
> What I'm sensing is when the boiler is actually burning oil, which
doesn't
> necessarily correspond to when a zone is on.  If that's what you
want to do
> then the zone LEDs are not what you need to monitor.  On mine, the
burner
> itself (the big part that sticks out of the bottom front of the
boiler) has
> an LED that only lights when fuel is being burned.
> I recently got my second monthly oil delivery since installing the
sensor,
> and my estimate of fuel used was only off by about 1/2 gallon
(which, at 93
> gallons, is a little more than 0.5%).
>
> I don't think that kit is the best for this application.  The only
part that
> would be useful for this is the DS9097U, which you can get from
> hobby-boards.com for about $25 I think.  You'll also need a DS2405
switch
> (get several), which you can get from the same place, or as samples
(for
> free!) from Maxim.  The rest of the kit consists of serial number
and memory
> iButtons.  They probably wouldn't be of much use, depending on what
else you
> might want to do with 1-wire.
>
> -Ben
>
>
> On 3/26/07, storemike <storemike@...> wrote:
> >
> > Thanks Ben.  My boiler also has red LEDs for each of teh 2 zones.
> > Since I have no 1-wire equipment yet, will the following starter
kit
> > (plus the IR sensor or photo darlington transistor) be what I'd
> > need?  I'm sure I'll add more 1-wire things/iButtons in the
future.
> >
> > http://www.maxim-ic.com/quick_view2.cfm/qv_pk/2975
> >
> > Thanks again,
> > Mike
> >
> >
> > --- In misterhouse@yahoogroups.com, "Ben Griffith" <griffithba@>
> > wrote:
> > >
> > > Mike,
> > >
> > > It's an oil fired boiler, and on the front of the burner unit
is an
> > LED that
> > > comes on when the burner fires up.  I slipped a short piece of
> > tubing over
> > > the LED and a Radio Shack IR sensor in the other end of the
> > tubing.  The
> > > sensor goes between ground and the PIO pin of a 1-wire DS2405
> > switch and a
> > > resistor goes between +5V and the PIO pin.  I had to play with
the
> > value of
> > > the resistor to get it to work right.  If you search the
archives
> > you'll
> > > find a post I wrote about it a couple months ago, including the
> > resistor
> > > value which I don't remember at the moment.  Someone suggested
that
> > better
> > > results might be had by using a photo-darlington transistor
instead
> > of the
> > > IR sensor, since the LED doesn't actually put out very much IR
and
> > the
> > > photo-darlington transistor detects visible light.  I haven't
> > changed it
> > > because once I tuned it with the correct value resistor it
seems to
> > work
> > > fine.  Other suggestions were to use a current sensor on a wire
> > that is only
> > > hot when the boiler is on.
> > >
> > > Hope that helps.
> > >
> > > -Ben
> > >
> > > On 3/13/07, storemike <storemike@> wrote:
> > > >
> > > > Ben,
> > > >
> > > > how are you getting the status of your boiler?  This is
something
> > I'd
> > > > like to add to my setup.
> > > >
> > > > Thanks,
> > > > Mike
> > > >
> > > > --- In misterhouse@yahoogroups.com , "Ben Griffith"
<griffithba@>
> > > > wrote:
> > > > >
> > > > > I monitor my boiler this way.  When it's off a 0 is entered
into
> > > > the RRD,
> > > > > and when it's on a high number is entered (I think it's
250 ...
> > > > something
> > > > > higher than the max temp of the boiler).  Then I set that
up to
> > be
> > > > a shaded
> > > > > area on a graph of the supply and return temperatures.  I
had to
> > > > constrain
> > > > > the graph range manually or else it would try to accomodate
the
> > 0-
> > > > 250 range
> > > > > of the on/off data.  This results in vertical stripes
indicating
> > > > when the
> > > > > boiler was on.  (I also have another RRD that I've
mentioned on
> > the
> > > > list
> > > > > before that tracks the number of minutes per hour that the
> > boiler
> > > > is on.)
> > > > > This isn't quite what you want, since you're looking more
for
> > > > discrete
> > > > > events, but I think it would work anyway.  If you set the
> > > > resolution of the
> > > > > RRD file to 10 seconds (for example), then when an event
happens
> > > > you put a 1
> > > > > in the RRD (I don't think it would matter if more than one
event
> > > > happens in
> > > > > 10 seconds, since a gauge data type averages all entries in
a
> > > > period).  I
> > > > > don't think you'd need to enter 0 if nothing happened
because if
> > > > you don't
> > > > > you'll get NaN in the RRD, which might be just fine for the
> > graph.
> > > > In the
> > > > > case of a door or other on/off, open/close object you'd keep
> > > > putting a 1 in
> > > > > the RRD every 10s until the door is closed.
> > > > > What you'd see in the graph would be a bar every time an
event
> > > > happened
> > > > > within a 10s period, or in the case of a door, a bar that
is as
> > > > wide as the
> > > > > time the door was open.  I think you'd have to be careful
that
> > your
> > > > graph is
> > > > > big enough so that one period (10s in my example) is at
least
> > one
> > > > pixel
> > > > > wide, otherwise you might not see individual events.
> > > > >
> > > > > The graph(s) could be generated outside of MH using cron.
> > > > >
> > > > > -Ben
> > > > >
> > > > > On 3/13/07, Tom < tom.valdes@> wrote:
> > > > > >
> > > > > > I had posted this message awhile ago and had tried a
> > suggestion
> > > > but
> > > > > > nothing ever came of it so I'm trying again.
> > > > > >
> > > > > > ---------
> > > > > >
> > > > > > Does anyone use RRD graphs for monitoring other items?
> > > > > >
> > > > > > I currently send all motion and garage events to a log
file in
> > > > text form.
> > > > > > For getting a quick status view, I think it would be
easier to
> > > > view in
> > > > > > the form of an RRD graph.
> > > > > > The graph would basically be flat along the 0 line, but
when
> > > > motion is
> > > > > > detected (people movement, garage open, mailbox open,
etc),
> > the
> > > > line
> > > > > > would go up to a 1.  When movement it no longer detected,
> > garage
> > > > is
> > > > > > closed, etc, the line would go back down to 0.
> > > > > > I would then be able to see at a glance when some event
> > happened?
> > > > > >
> > > > > > Is there already something like this in place?  If not,
anyone
> > > > want to
> > > > > > take a stab at it :-)
> > > > > >
> > > > > > thanks,
> > > > > > tom
> > > > > >
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