Connecting Motion Activated to Non Motion activated Flood Light

Discussion in 'Electrical Forum discussion & Blog' started by zapped, Nov 30, 2007.

  1. zapped

    zapped New Member

    Nov 30, 2007
    I have a motion activated light over the driveway. I also wish to have a floodlight trigger on the side of the house when the driveway light triggers and comes on. Is there anyway I can wire the standard floodlight that is NOT motion activated to the motion activated light over the driveway? So when the driveway light comes on the side light will also?

  2. Cass

    Cass Plumber

    Nov 12, 2005
    Not unless the light is specifically made to operate that way.

    Just buy another motion triggered light.
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  4. 480sparky

    480sparky In the Trades

    Oct 8, 2007
    Electrical Contractor
    It is possible to make it work, but the electronics in the motion light are capable of handling only so much current. This is part of the UL listing of the fixture. To alter it's use would technically be a violation.

    Just because you can do something doesn't mean you should.
  5. zapped

    zapped New Member

    Nov 30, 2007

    I was in question about that. Was told that since they are both on the same breaker to run the hot from the box to the motion floodlight, then the nuetral from the motion floodlight to the hot on the non motion sensing flood, then the neutral from the non motion sensing one back to the box. Making the whole get up in series. Thats why I am here. Knew the electric shop Electricians here in Phoenix must have been wrong. Too simple.

    Ya thought about another motion sensing light but tired of every windy night going out and adjusting 3-4 lights so they do not run all night, then when not windy re-adjusting them. The one on the garage is awesome and will keep that one, no false triggers and very accurite. Could use one of those on side but would rather light up the whole place on one trigger vice waiting for someone to walk around to the gate to trigger it. And unfortunantly the company that made the one over the garage does not have the red wire for another triggered device. Thanks again and may have to contact the company for the answer on this since I am sure they know how it can be done.
  6. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Aug 31, 2004
    San Diego, CA
    You definitetely CANNOT connect fixtures in series. Without the motion sensor, this would cause each one to operate at 1/2 power. With the motion sensor it probably wouldn't work at all;

    In theory, you could tap off the switched side of the motion sensor and power the second light from that. BUT, the sensor itself is probably designed to handle only the current from the one fixture. so you would burn it up.

    The way to do this is get a stand alone motion sensor, mounted on a j-box in the area you want to cover. Make sure to get a sensor which has a wattage rating greater than the total fixtures you want to power.
  7. Bill Arden

    Bill Arden Computer Programmer

    Sep 30, 2006
    computer programmer
    MN, USA
    I used motion sensor light with a X-10 transmitter built in.

    I then used a X-10 light switch for the other light.

    I don't remember where I got it.
  8. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Sep 2, 2004
    Retired Systems engineer for defense industry.
    New England
  9. Bob NH

    Bob NH In the Trades

    Oct 20, 2005
    New Hampshire
    Get into the circuit and connect the motion detector to the coil of a relay or contactor that will handle all of the lighting load. Connect the coil circuit where the light would connect. Then connect as many lights as you want through the relay contacts.

    It won't take a large relay for a couple of lights. A relay that is large enough to do the job will fit inside a junction box. You might be able to fit it into the box where the motion-detector is located. You can probably get small quantities at Radio Shack. They have a large selection at Grainger if you have access to an account.

    You need a relay with a 120 Volt coil and at least 5 Amps contact rating. I would get a 10 Amp rating if it fits the box.

    The relay probably costs less than $10 and your job is then to connect the lights. If they are the only thing on a circuit you can control the whole circuit to the relay.

    If you need any circuit details, post again or send me a PM.
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