I was browsing Amazon.com and found these pre-made relay boards…
The relays are made for microcontrollers like the Arduino, and can switch 250V AC 10A.
I have a number of neon lights/signs, and regular bulb outlets that I would like to have the Arduino control based on the amount of ambient light outside. Pictures of the lights are included below.
My father knows more about line voltage than me, and he said that the main line power is more likely than not 15A-20A. He also said that if I was to send 15-20 to those relays, that since they are 10A relays they should only output 10A. I figured I’d get a second opinion on this. He also said, however, that the neon may need more than 10A.
Before checking with a certified electrician to get an idea of the specific power needed for these neon signs, i figured id ask here to see if anyone has worked with neon in the past or present and get their opinions.
Basically, I want the arduino to switch the signs and lights on once the ambient light level drops below a specific amount, turn some of them off at a specific time during the night (would require either a real-time clock or i could use my ethernet shield to poll a PHP script), and then all of them off once the light is above a specific level. I don’t have the office open 24/7, so we don’t always need the main sign turned on.
See attachments below for images of neon.
We have 2 of the neon “Office” signs depicted in Photo 1, one on each side of the office.
The main Motel sign in Photo 2 is made of a number of parts.
- The motel sign itself
- the neon that says “Budget Inn” (previous business name). We covered it with semi-translucent plexiglass to diffuse the light a bit. We plan to paint a WiFi logo on the plexiglass to help mask the previous business name. Just like the office neon, there are 2 neon "Budget Inn"s, one on each side of the sign.
- The “No Vacancy” neon (again, 2 of these, one on each side). Something went bad with the power supply in the sign box itself and we cannot get it working, but we’re still looking into it. The “NO” portion is turned on and off via a switch on the sign itself (a bit inconvenient). As of right now, do not take the No Vacancy part into consideration.
Photo 3 is just two CFL lights over top of the car port for guests when they arrive. Dead center is a wireless X10 motion detector that switches a lamp in the office to turn on, as well as a light in the managers quarters (my home) attached to the office, alerting me to a car pulling up. This helps give me a minute or so to be ready, as opposed to a door buzzer (which I also have just in case I am not near the light).
In the office I have switches to turn on/off the 2x Office Neon (one switch), the Budget Inn neon (one switch), the main sign (one switch), the office lights (one switch), the car port lights (one switch), an outlet outside of the office (one switch), and a few additional switches that appear to be legacy and no longer appear to work.
Basically, would these relay modules be able to handle dealing with the neon lights, or would I need something a little more beefy?