Wiring for a day/night switch for the chauff-eau?
21st February 2018 at 20:19 #1823598
I want to install a tableau chauffe-eau. Ready to fit boxes are available which have two circuit breakers (20 amp and 2amp) and a day/night/off switch. Where can I find out how to wire this up? I’ve had a rummage around on the internet and can’t find anything. Does it need any special connection from the meter box for the day/night switching signal or is this present on the normal mains live cable? Thanks in advance….21st February 2018 at 21:24 #1823603
First some pictures:
1/ For the lucky owners of a modern digital meter (Sagem/Siemens) this diagram.
2/ For those who have learned to appreciate older stuff, a rotating disc meter with a separate relay (relais de découplage) this wiring.
3/ Relais de déouplage, cover open and old type main switch (disjoncteur de branchement).
4/ Sagem meter, lower cover (client side) removed showing contacts C1 and C2.
5/ Protection of course by a RCD / interrupteur différentiel of 30 mA.
Hope this helps. In the past the secrets of this contacteur (relay) jour/nuit + fil pilote have been explained more than once in this forum, so if the search engine does what it is supposed to do it should be possible to get more text than these three lines.
RA21st February 2018 at 21:43 #1823605
My own search function went back in my memory, flashback, to 2010, PontNoir website
The older disc type meters have two read-outs if there is – or was – a heures pleines/heures creuses connection. The EDF sends a so called fil pilotesignal into the powergrid. A relay on the customer side comes into action, and closes a switch. This relay is sometimes a separate little box, called a relais de découplage, or incorporated in the modern digital compteur. Contactpoints inside C1 (alimentation) and C2 (départ). See this SAGEM documentation, le bornier inférieur, page 20. To protect the switch contacts of this relay the power to these contacts goes through a disjoncteur of 2 Amps. For more details see this diagram. During the heures creuses the relay contact on the coté abonné is closed, and during the heures pleinesthis switch is open. Easy to measure: you ‘ll see then 230 Volts across this switch. One contact receiving 230 Volts, the other connected to neutral via the coil of your contacteur jour/nuit. Zero Volts when in the jour/nuit position, contacts closed, and 230 Volts feeding the coil (contactpoints A1/A2) of your contacteur jour/nuit, closing its switch and giving the green light for a current of about 10 Amps to flow to your chauffe-eau, protected by a disjoncteur of 20 Amps.
RA21st February 2018 at 22:26 #1823609
Thanks robertarthur. This all look pretty much spot on. We’re moving into a house shortly which has got old but quite well laid out wiring in the best French tradition. Unusually it’s all in good condition with proper gaine and junction boxes. Luckily I’m not colour blind so I should be able to work out where everything goes! It’s also single phase which is quite unusual. All the houses we’ve looked at in the last 2 years have all been three phase, even the small ones, which is good as well. It’s got an old meter which I think ERDF are planning to update in this area in a year or three? It has a panel with fuses which I anticipate replacing with a modern consumer unit and putting in a proper earth. I think there is day/night switch somewhere but haven’t got round to finding it yet. Thanks again…21st February 2018 at 22:56 #1823611
Hookie, why not wait a while and put the day/night relay together with its two assistants in your new tableau électrique? Much easier to wire and feed from a RCD on the same rail. Those ready to fit boxes can be useful where the existing distribution board is already overcrowded or for those who own electric heritage.
Last but not least: before 2010 a day/night abonnement used to be cheaper than the standard tariff. After the tariff structure changes in August 2010 you have to be a real “power-user” (electric heating, many children to keep the washing machine busy etc. ) to benefit from the heures creuses/heures pleines. One of the French consumer organisations had something to say about it. My advice: get your calculator before deciding. The “option base” is nowadays not bad at all.
RA22nd February 2018 at 10:51 #1823615
He again robertarthur and thanks for the additional info. Like most people we assumed(?) that the dual rate would (and should) be cheaper, but following on what you’ve said we’ll look into it in detail. There’s only the two of us here with the occasional visitor. We use electricity for water heating, all our cooking, the washing machine, occasional dish washer and bedroom heating when it’s very cold. That’s pretty much it. The washing machine dish washer and bedroom heating only get used when the cheap rate comes on. So I’ll investigate further. With regard to fitting the day/night switch and trips into the new consumer unit. Depending on where all the existing wiring and it’s condition I’ll consider this as well. One further question which has baffled me ever since I’ve been in France. I visited a DIY store (Leroy-Merlin, Brico Depot etc.) last week to look at all the electrical stuff and continue to be baffled at the cost of Legrand stuff. Looking at consumer units a Legrand one was priced at 279 Euros and another one with the identical specs, number of units/ranges and is NF certified costs 79 Euros. Why spend the extra. I’ve never found Legrand switches and sockets any better than cheaper ones costing a quarter of the price. Am I missing something? Thanks again….22nd February 2018 at 11:36 #1823617
Hookie, every electrician sticks to his or her preferred brand name, quantity discounts can be substantial. Legrand, Hager and Schneider, and sometimes Siemens and other German names in the brico sheds. Where you’ll also find low cost names, half the price, better to be avoided. There are ways to produce such a simple, but rather complicated MCB, for almost nothing. And the answer in time is: reliability, or even safety issues in the case of a RCD. A new tableau électrique: you will not regret buying quality stuff. The cost of a bit of plastic and copper, switches: everywhere in Europe expensive, a premium price for very low cost technology. Twenty euros buy me a handful of high-tech integrated circuits, voltage regulators, usb memory sticks, a complete Arduino computer board. Price level: even the quality disjoncteurs and interrupteurs différentiel in France go for about 50 % of what the Dutchies have to pay in their foggy lowlands behind dikes, to put things in an international perspective. The always surprising European single market.
RA22nd February 2018 at 11:50 #1823618
HalParticipantJoined: 06 Jan 2011Location: Limoux, 11300 Aude.Total posts: 3793
Get to know a few people in the trade locally and the prices of quality stuff varies even more! I have been selective in what I use and where – always Legrand on the main board, but sub boards for the outhouses, I have used the cheaper Brico MCBs and sockets etc. In the workshop, I have flooded the place with the really cheap Brico ones. So far, everything has stood up well.
Onto the night tariff – I too wonder if there is anything in it. I now just have the water heater on 24/7 and have not noticed anything changing much on the leccy bill – OK, the cistern is modern and I have solar panels which helps.
Kind regards Hal http://www.domainedurenne.com22nd February 2018 at 16:00 #1823629
mikejParticipantJoined: 21 Jun 2011Location: Dordogne sometimes and Kent the restTotal posts: 5287
I’v always found this company to be very competitive for Hager equipment:
WFIPFLL24th February 2018 at 18:08 #1823819
chrisellParticipantJoined: 30 Mar 2015Location: N/ATotal posts: 53
Same here with bits and costs. There are offers on tableau/breakers in the Brico’s quite often – the pre wired packages can be “bargains” compared with the individual prices – Schneider especially I found with hunting you can find heavily discounted a lot of the time. I’ve generally gone with additional Schneider bits for the main tableau and the cheaper stuff goes in the workshop tableau. Sometimes you’re paying a bit for the brand – but I would say the better tableau on the whole are easier to work with – seem well designed with regards actually having space for cables and fingers.
Plug sockets – spend the money – the cheap ones I find the cover plate comes off with the plug most days – light switches however I find the cheap Leroy Merlin ones perfect.