Insteon PLM Fail Mode -- Best way to Install New PLM

Hey guys,

I’ve been running OH with primarily Insteon devices for a few years now. I’m starting to have some erratic behavior with some things not working, others taking a very long time to work and some lights turning on - on their own. I’ve read many comments about PLMs dying over time due to crappy caps. Wondering if this is what I’m starting to experience or if the fail mode is more binary - one minute it works another it doesn’t?

Either way - I’ve bought a new PLM. I have backups of my PLMs DB, so I’m assuming I should restore this DB onto the new device. After that I’m assuming I have to hit every device with Insteon-Terminal and use the “replace device” command to change my old PLMs address with the new. Is this correct - or is there a better way to do this?

@Bernd_Pfrommer - you seem to be the expert on dead PLMs. Any advice?

For me the way the modem crapped out was that it simply no longer responded. I think I had to power cycle it to get it back to life. This became more and more frequent, until eventually power cycling no longer did the trick.

I had some lights turn on on their own as well at some point, but forgot what it was. I think it had to do with a poll returning a bad value occasionally.

But the biggest PITA when replacing a modem is relinking all the devices. Even if you copy the modem database using insteon terminal, the new modem has a different address, and all the devices out there are linked to the old modem address.

Since I have 100+ devices, I decided I’d rather replace the capacitors. You end up having a better modem than before. So far so good, I’m still running on the original modem with new capacitors. The modem did lose the database when I replaced the capacitors, which was a surprise, but not a problem since I had backed it up before.

Hey Bernd -

OK - so sounds like that is what is happening to me too. I returned form a business trip to an unresponsive modem. Had to power cycle several times to get it to go, and now it is spotty.

We need to write a script that will take all the devices in my intsteon-terminal and run the replace device command to swap out the modems address for the new one! I’m guessing I will not be the last person to have to do this…

Thanks for your help!

About that “replace device” thingy… your mileage may vary. It turns out that many recent devices will not give your new modem the time of day until you link it with buttons, the hard way. Try it on one switch first before you go massive.

I think the hub somehow manages to link without physically pressing the buttons, but I don’t know how they do it.

On the other hand, you should be able to still do it from your old modem, since that one is linked, so they should accept packets from that one.

Right - I also have a (new style) hub that I’ll use with insteon-terminal to “replace devices” old for new hub address. I’ll let you know how it goes.