Heated blanket goes WiFi

Discussion in 'The Projects Forum' started by shezza, May 24, 2017.

  1. shezza

    Thread Starter Member

    Mar 19, 2014
    54
    1
    So most if not all heated blankets have IC's these days. My brother has an old one, leaves it on the desired setting and gets his WiFi switch to turn it on and off it goes. Being that mine has an IC, it will always start up on 0. Here is my idea...

    A relay switching one side of the temp micro switch with the other. The WiFi wall plug will operate a low voltage power supply which operates the aforementioned relay. I leave my heated blanket control on permanently which uses next to no power and when I turn on the WiFi wall plug, it goes to the first setting, turn it off and on again, second setting and so on...

    So why am I putting up this post? I am wondering if anyone has any better thoughts? Short of adapting the IC or anything too sophisticated... My electrical knowledge is fairly limited.
     
  2. wayneh

    Expert

    Sep 9, 2010
    14,703
    5,223
    Instead of a relay, you can likely use a transistor (MOSFET) to do whatever the relay would have. That will simplify the circuit and reduce the power consumption.

    An optoisolator is another option to consider. It would need a little power (to light an internal LED) but adds full isolation.
     
  3. dl324

    AAC Fanatic!

    Mar 30, 2015
    6,950
    1,608
    I'm wondering why you think you need that capability...
     
  4. Sensacell

    Moderator

    Jun 19, 2012
    1,899
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    We seem to live in a new world where connecting stuff to the internet is a cult, even if there is ZERO logical value to doing so, it's still an unimpeachable idea.

    Holland. Tulip bulbs.
     
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  5. Travm

    Member

    Aug 16, 2016
    200
    18
    Tulips are monsters, impossible to kill.
    They actually dominate my lawn, and without individually digging them up and murdering them, they persist. No amount of mowing can destroy them.
     
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  6. shezza

    Thread Starter Member

    Mar 19, 2014
    54
    1
    I like simplification, but as for power usage, it will go on for a second and straight off. I can't wrap my head around transistors. Could you simplify it for me? So you have the D, S and G of the transistor, a + and -... and two ends of a switch. What would go to what?

    To answer your questions... I believe tulips have a bulb root. Bulbs are quite efficient at storing food, so yes, short of chemicals... Digging them up one by one is the way to go. It is said that if you slash/mow it constantly, not letting much grow back so it doesn't get a good chance to photosynthesize, eventually it will run dry. You could be worse off... Oxalis, Angled onion and Montbretia are serious headaches. They have bulbs or similar food storage systems and actually reproduce them. Pull out the plant and it's bulb, sure... but they have dropped some babies for you to replace them. I have all 3 haha :(

    And to touch on your commentary on why people do what they do and why I am doing what I am... Some people do things for fun, that is what a hobby is and there is nothing wrong with that. A persons enjoyment is only someone else's business when it infringes on them. A serious infringement, not someone who is highly irritated by people who do things they don't understand the benefit of :p

    Why I am doing it? I recently moved from a single story to a triple story. Going to my room to turn it on, then coming back downstairs seems like too much of a choir. Especially considering it is late and I am tired. The joy of walking into my room and jumping into a warm bed is definitely worth the expense and time of making it, plus I enjoy technology... I am excited about setting it up as well as having the convenience.
     
  7. Sensacell

    Moderator

    Jun 19, 2012
    1,899
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    My apologies, ranting about IoT is hard to suppress- any reason to build and learn is a good reason.
    Just don't launch a kickstarter campaign based on the idea! that would freak me out.
     
  8. shezza

    Thread Starter Member

    Mar 19, 2014
    54
    1
    Freak you out? Why? I don't know if kickstarter will let me retract it? :p
     
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  9. wayneh

    Expert

    Sep 9, 2010
    14,703
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    Like a mechanical switch or relay, a transistor switch has two states - conducting or not conducting. Unlike the mechanical switch that requires a human or the coil of the relay to change the mechanical layout of the switch, a transistor requires a control signal (on the base of a BJT or the gate of a MOSFET) applied to it, to change the state of the switch. And unlike mechanical switches, transistors have a polarity. Whether they are conducting or not depends on the relationship of the control signal to the emitter or gate of the BJT or MOSFET.

    I should add that there such a thing as a solid state relay, and that might be a good choice here, too.

    So the hardest part of replacing your little switch in the heating blanket with a transistor switch is determining what the existing switch actually does. It might touch one side to ground or to +V when you press it. If you have a multimeter, and can make some sense of the circuit to identify ground and +V, you can probe the switch and see what it does.

    People that want to control their cameras electronically deal with this same issue when they try to automate the shutter release.
     
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