Are you from United States of America? Please use FAQ tailored for you here

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is tailored for New Zealand and the new Plug-and-Go iSocket since 2021.
  • 1. Do I need to plug my appliance into iSocket in order to receive power outage alerts and do I need a 'Power Switch' feature?

    In order to detect power outages to your appliances (like fridges, pumps, etc.) it is enough that you plug your iSocket to any free wall socket as long as this socket located on the same electrical circuit (powered from the same breaker) with your appliance. You do NOT need to plug your appliance into iSocket, because iSocket detects mains failure - power interruptions in your wall socket. If you do plug your appliance into iSocket you need to turn it on in order to energize your equipment connected into iSocket because internal relay of iSocket is turned off by default. You do this in the 'Power Switches' section.

    NOTE! Connecting your appliance into iSocket without real needs you create a so called extra point of failure. For example, occasionally you can turn it off and de-energize your appliance, or you can mess up with thermostat settings and it will be turned off, or internal relay of iSocket will fail and your appliance will be de-energized. Note about relays: they are designed for resistive loads, not for inductive. Some fridges/freezers with pumps will have surges on power on/off events and there will be inductive load that may damage relays. It is not failure of your fridge, neither iSocket. This is how fridges/freezers designed and how relays are designed too. We do NOT recommend to plug fridges/freezers into iSocket directly without real needs.

    What is the "real needs" then? Well, say, you don't have any free wall outlet for iSocket on the same electrical circuit that your appliance. If you are going to plug your fridge into iSocket keep in mind that reminder about relays. Another reason why you may want to plug your appliance into iSocket is because you want to switch it on/off/reboot remotely (say, you have a router). This is absolutely fine as these are features of iSocket: remote switch on, remote switch off, remote reboot. So the main reason when your appliance should be connected to iSocket is when you plan to use these features. That is when you need the 'Power Switch' feature.
  • 2. What appliances can I connect into iSocket?

    First of all please check the previous question about whether you need to plug anything into Socket at all. For power outage detections you can use Socket on any free wall socket as long as it on the same electrical ring with your appliance. It's better explained in another question.

    The internal switching mechanism of iSocket (relay) only supports resistive load. This is a completely normal practice for devices of this class. The opposite of a resistive load is an inductive load. How to distinguish inductive and resistive loads? Inductive load is usually indicated by the presence of a motor mechanism in the device. Examples of inductive loads: pumps, fans, refrigerators. Such devices can damage the switching mechanism of the device (relay) and your device will stop working for this very reason.

    You should not create an unnecessary points of failure without extreme needs. That is the core problem of any installation where a customer want to have "a mediator" between the wall and the appliance. If your application is just detection of power outages do NOT plug anything into iSocket, especially when you do not have a feature to switch this outlet on the iSocket - see the previous question.

    Also the relay will be off during remote firmware update procedures, which we, however, do NOT perform without customers will.

    This explanation might look too tech and not what you usually see from different smart plugs vendors, but this is just because we care. Otherwise principles for all smart plugs are the same - they have a small relay mechanism, which is for resistive load mainly.
  • 3. Can I connect a central heating system to the iSocket? What equipment can I connect?

    You may only connect appliances that are fitted with a plug. iSocket has a 16A relay. This means that you may connect about 3500W load for countries with ~230VAC (European countries and most other countries) or about 2000W load for countries with ~120VAC (e.g. North America). This applies for continuous resistive load. If your country has limitations (e.g. 13A in the UK) please follow the regulations in your country. You can check Tech Spec tabs for each iSocket on the iSocket World catalog. If your need to connect heavy loads you may consider to use contactors.
  • 4. How can I detect equipment failure?

    Appliance failure detection feature relies on the fact of current passing through the relay of iSocket from the wall socket into your appliance. When your appliance that is connected into iSocket draws power from the wall socket iSocket knows it, so your appliance is operating as it is consuming power. Once your appliance is broken it stops consume power and iSocket detects it.

    Hence the following limitation on the use of this feature apply. If your device is turning on and off during normal operation then you will never be able to distinguish a breakdown from a normal operation and there is no straightforward way to do this. Take the refrigerator, for example. During normal operation its motor is constantly turned on and off. How can you find out why the refrigerator turned off? Has it broken down or because the motor has turned off?

    You may only detect failures of appliances that suppose running on constantly. Note, in order to use this feature you have to order a proper iSocket model with energy meter or select specific applications on checkout. Please read also previous two questions before you plug anything into iSocket.
  • 5. How much power Socket draws itself when plugged in and on standby?

    It has a very little active power of about 1W only.
  • 6. If connection to the mobile network is lost, what happens to the device? Will it continue to work?

    iSocket is designed with advanced unique technology - iSocket Online 24/7 - that gets the device back even after a break in the mobile network. Your iSocket won't hang up. The status of the mobile network does not affect the relay (power switch). This means that even if the connection is lost for a while, the iSocket relay will remain in the same status as it was before the interruption in the mobile network (i.e. your appliance remains connected).
  • 7. Can I use the device in cold weather?

    iSocket is designed to be used in a dry environment. We have tested it down to -30C (-22F) in Finland, but NOTE that the device has a li-ion battery that is not suitable for use at extreme cold temperatures. The device is therefore usually rated to work down to -10C (14F). More details can be found in the Tech Spec tabs for each product on the iSocket World catalog.

    Read more about use the device in cold weather.
  • 8. What could happen if I use iSocket in very cold conditions?

    First of all you will lose your warranty :) Please, read "Why Do Some Electronics Work In Cold Weather And Others Don’t?"
  • 9. I want to use your iSocket for when my internet goes down and I need to reset the router. Can iSocket power cycle the router automatically for me?

    Many customers use iSocket for just such an application - to reset the router when an internet connection is lost. However, iSocket cannot detect internet failure in your router. You have to know that the internet has failed (e.g. because you lost connection to some service) and then you can reboot the power of your router with iSocket to which the plug of your router is connected. Also iSocket have an input, which accepts logical "1" or "0". You can probably use this input. We have no exact solution because it depends on your router, but here are few thoughts: If your router has some kind of alarm output that changes its status when the internet goes down, you may connect this output to the iSocket's input. Then you can configure it to reset the power socket (relay output) of the iSocket when the change of status of the input is detected. If your router does not have any alarm output you may try to find some Ethernet device that is able to detect internet failure and has an alarm output. Such a device will be connected to your router by Ethernet and the alarm output of this device can be connected to the iSocket's input. Finally, you can detect failure of the internet by means of software. E.g. A software service from outside can ping your router every minute and report to you when the connection is lost. When this happens you can reboot the power of your router with iSocket.
  • 10. Why do you charge for different features?

    Since 2021 iSocket is a Plug-and-Go hassle-free solution with integrated connectivity that allows your iSocket to be connected to any available cellular network. We pay cellular service providers a base fee. On the top of that we pay a fee for data usage. Each feature of iSocket creates additional data usage. On the top of that we use clustering solutions for our servers and pay a fee to datacenters. This clustering solution allows you too see real-time status of your device 24/7/365. Each feature of iSocket creates additional usage of these server resources too. We believe that our fees are minimal, and most part of them are used to pay for the services of third parties. These two examples are only part of the full picture. It might not be so obvious how much work is going on there on the background when you just look at the interface, which we aimed to create very simple for end users.
  • 11. Where can I find the detailed specification for a product?

    Each product on "The World of iSocket" website has an individual webpage where we place all information about that product. You will find detailed specifications for a product in the Tech Spec tab on the individual page for each product.