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


  • When the H90U motor closes your coop door, an exterior light automatically switches ON.

  • Light provides visual confirmation that your door has closed at the time you expect.  Eliminates worry about whether coop door is closed or not, so you'll know when your hens are secure.

  • Ideal if your can not easily see the coop door, or if coop is located in an isolated area.

  • The light can be seen from a great distance, even a low wattage bulb is clearly visible.

  • Area around coop is lit so you can see if predators are around.

  • Light automatically switches OFF when motor opens the door.

  • If light is OFF, that is a signal to you that door is open.  At night, that is a warning.  At dawn, it is a confirmation that the door has opened as normal.

  • Choose high or low wattage AC lighting.

  • In winter, you can also have a second light automatically switch ON inside the coop to add warmth.

  • Works with or without motor.  Light turns ON and OFF if door is opened and closed manually.



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).



Illustration 1




Text Box: AM
Text Box: B
Text Box: A
Text Box: X
Text Box: Alternate Location for Part A and B









Illustration 2


















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

     Powerflash terminals.



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  Thank you.





   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.

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