ECM Puristika PID causes pulsating lights in my kitchen - Page 2

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Derryisreal (original poster)
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#11: Post by Derryisreal (original poster) »

The thing is, I run a 1850 Watt hair dryer from the same outlet, the lights dim slightly once the dryer is turned on and return to normal brightness once I shut it off. I run it for 10 min. No pulsating of lights.
As soon as something that goes on and off (like a PID) is running, the lights start pulsating.
Neither milk, nor sugar.

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Jeff
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#12: Post by Jeff »

Like the way one might not consciously notice a cloud slightly obscuring the sun, but shadows with sharp edges constantly flickering over you would put many into heightened awareness.

Most any appliance with electronic regulation (as opposed to a switch or relay) is potentially going to cause this. A toaster oven we used to have did the same and I doubt it had a PID control loop in it.

I also agree that older or less expensive meters that many electricians might carry are not going to "read" this kind of voltage fluctuation.

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Derryisreal (original poster)
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#13: Post by Derryisreal (original poster) »

Jeff wrote:Most any appliance with electronic regulation (as opposed to a switch or relay) is potentially going to cause this. A toaster oven we used to have did the same and I doubt it had a PID control loop in it.
Thanks, Jeff, as long as it isn't dangerous, I guess the only way to resolve the issue is to use an outlet that is not on the same circuit breaker as the lights?
Neither milk, nor sugar.

Davi-L

#14: Post by Davi-L »

Greetings,

Quickly dimming lights is common with espresso machines and PID controllers. My Quickmill too.
It was worse in my old house with a 100 Amp main panel, and the new house has a 200A panel and it still occurs on the guest bathroom lights, but not as badly. And they are on separate breakers. Even having the electrician wire 12 gauge wiring to the espresso machine didn't help.
When the house is running on the 50 Amp emergency generator, the dimming is more noticeable. (There's a hint there.)

So it's a power feed problem to the house. Can't catch the voltage drop with the existing wiring.
So maybe a 400 A service to the house may fix it? And you are in an apartment.

The voltage drops about 10% and quickly returns to the nominal 120 Volts here. Most meters can't even register the activity. But lights and humans sure do.

I dare say it might not be a problem with 230 Volts as found in Europe where these machines are made and under wired, gauge wise.
Note that I replaced all the line voltage wiring in my machine from 18G to 14. It made no dimming difference, but the terminals stopped turning black and overheating. 9 years on and counting.

Attempt 1: My USA made PID control allows setting a time base for the on/off cycles. One second is noticeable, random time base (very fast) is even worse. I just live with it, or turn the light off. I could go to say a longer 4 second time base and may not notice it so much. Have not bothered with that yet.

Most electricians don't have the tools or knowledge to deal with the issue, I've tried a dozen of them, really. They don't get it and don't bother following up. You need a specialist electronics type for this issue.

Grasping at Straws 2: You could install a bulky line voltage auto-transformer (120/120V) at the espresso machine. Talk to the dealer about it. It may smooth out the cycling effect. I tried one at the main panel feeding the espresso machine but it made no difference. So I gave it back to the supplier.
However I should have tried it at the espresso machine proper. It may have worked? Dumb me.

This topic has been covered before in HB, but I never read a solution.

Dave

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Derryisreal (original poster)
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#15: Post by Derryisreal (original poster) »

Thank you so much, Dave, awesome info!
I did put the machine on another circuit breaker (not feeding any lights), and the pulsing finally stopped.
Neither milk, nor sugar.