x10 motor interface motorized blinds or shades

x10 home automation tubular motor blinds, shades, etcHome automation systems (such as our Vera® wifi control system) can be easily interfaced with our RollerTrol™ motors (shown on left) to control windows, window blinds and shades, vents, skylights and any other item you would like to move with a motorized roller or actuator.

Although this article discusses the use of this switch with our tubular blind motors, this is a very versatile controller - it can also be used as a stand-alone wall mounted switch for our window and skylight openers, and our motorized irrigation ball valves (or any other 12v DC application). It can also be used to interface with any home automation controller that can control a pair of simple single pole relays, or you can use our ZWAVE and WiFi control modules:

Please Note: This unit in this article is for use with our Non-radio motors. If you are planning to use your home automation system with our Radio motors, such as our popular battery motors with built-in batteries that require no wires, we have a different interface that is also controlled by relays:

Interface for home automation systems, using our radio motors

You can also read about using this wired switch with ZWAVE (and the radio version in the above link) in this article series: using ZWAVE to control blind motors and window/skylight openers.

12v DC Motor Universal Interface for Home Automation Systems:

This is the unit you need to add a group of blinds to your existing home automation system (buy it in our online store). The price includes the universal interface and 1 motor of choice, additional motors and power supplies are purchased separately as required.

home automation software controls tubular motors for blinds, shades, etcThe universal interface kit for home automation systems will work with I/O controllers from companies such as Vera®, Insteon®, Z-Wave®, Wink®, SmartThings®, Zigbee®, Crestron® and Control4®. Any home automation system that has dry contact output (ie relay capability) will work with our product.

All it requires is 2 switch closures for FORWARD & REVERSE. A third relay can be used as an extra safety margin to interrupt the power. This kit includes the interface controller and one motor of choice, and will control one group of up to approximately 8 blinds (10 amps), depending on motor selection and size of blind.

Our 12v power supplies have a positive (+) wire and a negative (-) wire. We normally refer to the negative (-) wire as 'ground'. If someone says a wire is 'shorted' to ground, you could substitute the word 'connected'. In this example, we'll use the Insteon EZIO 4 Input/2 Output Relay Controller as an example of a home automation system I/O (input/output) module that we want to use to operate our motors.

Please Note: You will need some wire to connect the DC power supply to the controller and/or to extend the wire from your motor (or actuator). Ordinary lamp cord works well, but you may need fire rated cable for in-wall or plenum applications.

wired wall switch reverses motors for blinds, shades, etc

The interface has 3 modes of jumper controlled operation: latched, momentary, and toggle.

If you are using external relays connected to the 4 pin control header, we recommend using the 'momentary' mode, which operates only as long as the switch or relay is held down, closing the circuit.

You would then leave your control relay on for x seconds, until the full travel has been reached and the motor has automatically stopped because of the travel limit (or sooner, if you want it to only go up part way).

After blind has traveled all the way, you can turn off the control relay so that it is not passing any current through its activation coil.

The exact same scenario applies for the "DN" relay, but make sure they cannot both be active at the same time or you will likely blow something - hopefully the fuse, if you have one on the DC input side of the controller.

An alternative is to do it in 'toggle' mode, but your automation system may not work so well because of timing issues and contact bounce, so 'momentary' mode may be a better choice.

You could also do it with 'latched' mode, but then you need 3 control relays (UP/DN/STOP), instead of 2 as above.

The motor itself is connected to the two separate output screw terminals, and the power supply is connected to the 2 separate power input screw terminals.

Note that our RollerTrol™ motors use a highly accurate internal electronic pulse counter to detect the travel limits (which you preset) and will automatically stop when the limits in either direction are reached. One advantage this has over older mechanical systems is that the number of turns is unlimited, so you can use them for really long blinds, such as you find with an atrium or greenhouse window.

Here are the motors that can be used with the Universal Interface: (see motor combinations with this item in our store)

  • Standard series, medium lift capacity: TMDC-12-25-07-34-NR (35mm drive use 1.5" tube, 6 lb lift, 34 rpm)
  • Maxi series, heavy duty lift capacity: TMDG-12-35-45-9-NR (60mm drive use 2.5" tube, 45 lb lift, 9 rpm)

We sincerely hope you enjoy using these advanced motors; if you have any questions, please feel free to contact us at any time!