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Timer Suggestions..

643 Views 5 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Lab_Man
My lighting system has two plugs and the Solenoid has one obviously.. so I am in need of a 3 outlet timer.. (the one I had around the house only has 2).

Any specific brands/types that you guys might suggest or will any 3 outlet timer be good in your opinion?
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I have tried only a couple and keep coming back to the Intermatic timer sold at hardware stores with names like "Lamp and Appliance" or "Vacation" timers.
I like the ones with removable pins (No, I do not lose them, but some people might)

Intermatic makes 3 versions that I know of.
They all have one outlet.
One has 2 holes, and plugs into the older wall sockets with 2 holes (necessary in my older home)
The 'Heavy Duty' has a 3-hole outlet, but must be plugged into a 3-hole outlet in the wall. (these are scarce in my house)
The 3rd one is sold for damp locations (well, high humidity, anyway). I get them at irrigation stores like Ewing, Horizon or John Deere. They are black. They are usually sold for low voltage lighting systems.

I have added a 3-outlet splitter to these so each timer can turn on 3 lights. Be careful when you do this that you do not overload the circuit. Any of these can handle 15 amp max.
I can even set up multiple on/off cycles with these, with the pins. (They come with 2 'on' pins and 2 'off' pins).

The other timers I have tried all failed sooner rather than later. Sorry, I do not remember the names.
A couple of the type where the pins are permanently part of the fixture, and you just push them in or out, and one electronic timer that was built in to a 5- outlet power supply. I think 2 of the outlets were controlled by the timer, 3 were on all the time. That one was a nightmare to program, and when it died I was not at all unhappy to throw it away.
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Since I use a number of items that use 12VDC and require a "wall-wart" type power supply, I use an extention cord in the single outlet timers I use. That gives me the physical space needed as well as the number of outlets. If I exceed three, I plug a cheap power strip into the outlet. That is fairly rare in my use. For simple on/off operation, I use the cheap ones found in any big box type store.
I have never had a problem running a short extension cord of one timer. I had two light fixtures and my CO2 hooked up like this.
I have ran into a similar problem myself. I have multiple things that happen at different times during the day on my aquarium and need a bunch of timers. The only real way to stream line it into a single device is to buy some similar to a reefkeeper or a Apex controller. I have one of these for my 180 gallon cichlid tank and it works great, they are just expensive and not an option for most people because of this.
I bought 2 timers at Home Depot.

My CO2 comes on 3 hours before my lights, so I need 2 separate cheap timers or 1 expensive one.
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