FREE PLANS ... Build automatic night light and security system for your coop.
Add-a-Motor does not sell the components described in these plans, and does not represent component manufactures or sellers.
Here is how it works, and how it can help you
Primary components ... Approximately $30 retail excluding light fixture
Most components can be found at Home Depot, or at on-line retailers. You can also GOOGLE the component name or part number to find source. One source may have all components.
1. SEC-SM300WH O/L 3/4" Magnetic Door Switch. This device has 2 halves, A & B. It is a common
component in a home security system and called door or window magnet. VIP: Must be “Normally
Open" (NO) type, also called "open loop". About $4. "Normally Closed" switch will not operate.
2. X10 PF284 Powerflash Interface module. About $15. Buy new from a known source, never buy used.
3. X10 AM486 Appliance Module. About $10. Buy new from a known source, never buy used.
4. Several feet of low voltage insulated wire.
5. AC Power Strip (example Belkin F9D160-12, or comparable).
6. Exterior Light Fixture of your choosing (120-volts AC).
7. High or low wattage bulb, or energy efficient CFL bulb (compact fluorescent light).
CAUTION: Some door installations have a horizontal frame member that crosses over upper end of the door. Refer to the "X" in above Illustration 2. This portion can interfere with movement of the Magnetic Door Switch Part A when the door opens. One solution is to mount both Part A plus B above the frame if door space is available (refer to "Alternate Location"). Another solution is to adjust the motor so that it stops door before Part A engages "X". Another solution is to modify frame. VIP: Examine your door for any possible obstruction. Correct before proceeding, or do not use plans.
Instructions and example
1. Start with door in closed position.
2. Position the Power Strip near the AC electric outlet you plan to use, but do not plug it in at this time.
Power Strip should be located inside coop in moisture proof area and out of reach of your chickens.
Power Strip does not require a surge protector.
3. The Magnetic Door Switch has two parts, A and B. Part B has 2 wires or screw terminals. Part A has
none. Part B is stationary. Part A moves with door.
4. Refer to Illustrations 1 and 2. Select best installation location for Switch Part A and B for your door
and door frame. Screw Part B to frame or side channel across from bottom of door. Screw Part A
to door. VIP: From our experience, gap between Part A and Part B must be 1/4” for reliable
operation, even if Switch specification says 3/4" gap.
5. Connect or splice in 2 wires between Magnetic Door Switch Part B and the 2 screw terminals at base of
Powerflash module. You may connect these wires to in any order; polarity not an issue.
6. Set Powerflash Unit Code Dial to 5, and then set House Code Dial to “C”. These are example
settings; you can set any Unit or House Code as long they are same throughout the installation.
7. VIP: Set Powerflash Slide Switches to Input B, and Mode 3. This are required settings.
8. Plug Powerflash module (PF) into a Power Strip outlet.
9. Set AM486 Unit Code Dial to 5, plus set House Code Dial to “C” (VIP same as Powerflash example
above). Plug AM486 Appliance Module (AM) into Power Strip outlet.
10. Plug your light fixture into outlet of Appliance Module.
11. Plug Power strip into AC outlet. Test by operating motor to open door. Light should turn ON when
door is closed, and OFF when door opens.
How system functions
A. When door is closed, Magnetic Door Switch Part A and B must be adjacent to each other. This
causes an internal magnet to complete a circuit to the Powerflash module.
B. The Powerflash then sends an ON command to the Appliance Module.
C. The Appliance Module switches electric power ON to the light which turns ON.
D. When motor opens door, Part A moves up away from Part B. This opens the circuit and causes
the Powerflash to send an OFF command to the Appliance Module.
E. The Appliance Module then switches electric power OFF and light goes out.
D. There is only low voltage current in wires between Magnetic Door Switch Part B and the
Problem Solving: Light does not turn ON.
Solution: Verify that power strip is plugged into AC outlet.
Solution: If light has a switch, turn it ON. Example: Plug light directly into AC outlet, move switch to ON to verify light illuminates. If light does not illuminate, bulb is burned-out, or there is no AC power at outlet.
Solution: Verify that Powerflash Slide Switches are set to Input B, and Mode 3.
Solution: Verify that both Powerflash Slide Switches and Appliance Module are both set to the same House and Unit Codes. Example: House Code C, Unit 5.
Solution: Verify that Magnetic Door Switch is “Normally Open” (NO) or "open loop" type.
Solution: Verify wires from Part B are connected to terminals of Powerflash, and not touching.
Solution: Verify that Part A and B are adjacent, on the same plane, with small gap.
Please tell us if you use these plans, and send your comments and recommendations to
firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you.
Back to CHICKEN COOP MOTOR
Plans are compliments of Add-a-Motor, Inc., manufacturer of Models D20 and H90U chicken coop motors. Anyone is welcome to
use design and reproduce plan pages without obligation. Add-a-Motor tested the system to confirm reliability and functionality.
Add-a-Motor does not sell the components described in the plans, and does not represent component manufactures or sellers.
Add-a-Motor does not warrant the plans, and is not responsible for any outcome from using the plans. PF284 Powerflash and AM486
Appliance Modules are manufactured and warranted by X-10.