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How to integrate the INSTEON VenStar thermostat adapter

Recently, SmartLabs (which owns SmartHome) released a SMART (their new brand, which targets installers/professionals) version of their VenStar thermostat+adapter kit, which moves the INSTEON daughter board into the thermostat housing, doing away with the ugly adapter sticking out at the bottom of the thermostat.

Since this new thermostat doesn't offer any new features, az1234 decided to replicate this himself using the standard SmartHome kit.  Keep on reading for the details of this very simple project.

Having seen the Insteon Venstar Thermostat as part of the SmartPro line which had its wireless adapter installed internally, I decided to do it with mine. Be aware this is going to void your warranty. It has the advantages of improving overall appearance and hiding the always-on LED which is on the wireless adapter. I am not sure what effect this has on RF performance.



VenStar Thermostat VenStar INSTEON adapter VenStar INSTEON adapter

The wireless adapter is a 4-wire connection that uses an RJ-11 interface.

INSTEON adapter circuit board

What I did was to remove the RJ-11 wiring from the wireless adapter and save it in case I need to restore it later. Then I removed the RJ-11 jack from the thermostat board using hot air. Then you will need to use 4 wires to connect the boards and secure the wireless adapter board inside the thermostat using double-sided tape or hot glue and making sure the back of the wireless board is insulated so as to not cause any electrical shorts. 

The pads on the wireless board are labeled JP1-JP4. These connect to the thermostat board from left to right (when viewed as shown below, JP1=black) and are laid out on the board in the following staggered pattern:

INSTEON adapter soldering points 

You should end up with something looking like this:

INSTEON adapter circuit board

You can discuss this modification on the CocoonTech.com forums.