How to Set the Timer on Intermatic Malibu Landscape Lighting

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The timer allows you to automatically set your landscape lighting.
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The Intermatic Malibu timer can be used to automatically turn on and off landscape lighting, outdoor spotlights, security lights, holiday light displays and other low-voltage connections. It must be manually programmed to turn on and off at certain times of the day. Once it's programmed, the Intermatic Malibu timer will run on a 24-hour cycle. The programmable features include the current time of day, the timer "on" time and the timer "off" time.

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Programming the Intermatic Malibu Timer

Start by setting the correct time of day on your Intermatic Malibu timer. Notice the arrow on the very center of the dial. This is the time-of-day arrow. Rotate the entire dial clockwise until the current time aligns with the time-of-day arrow.

Next, program the timer to start and stop at certain times of the day. Notice the red and black markers (or red and green markers depending on the exact style of Intermatic timer). These plastic pieces pull straight out. Slide the red piece next to the time when you want the timer to turn on and the black piece next to the time you want the timer to turn off.

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The Intermatic Malibu timer comes with two sets of plastic markers. You only need to use one set. Because the pieces are rather small, they can be easy to lose if you accidentally drop them in the grass. Keep the extra set in a baggy as a backup.

Tips for Using the Timer

This timer is most commonly used for outdoor lighting. Remember to adjust the markers every couple of weeks to account for seasonal changes in sunlight. This will prolong the life of your outdoor light bulbs and decrease energy usage.

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If you want to turn the timer off or on early, you can manually override the programming by turning the dial counterclockwise until the time-of-day arrow passes the appropriate marker.

The Intermatic Malibu timer is not intended for indoor use. Consider in-wall controls (available as simple knobs or with digital displays) to ensure indoor lights are not left on continuously or to keep your home brightly lit while you're away.

Voltage and Wattage Information

The Intermatic Malibu timer is meant to be used only with low-voltage connections up to 12 volts maximum. Too much voltage can blow the transformer. In addition, the Intermatic Malibu timer can handle up to 88 nominal watts.

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To calculate nominal watts, multiply the number of lights by the wattage of each light. For example, you can reach 88 watts by connecting a string of 22 lights in which each bulb is rated at 4 watts. If different kinds of lights are used, add the wattage of each individual light bulb. For example, you might have eight 10-watt bulbs plus two 4-watt bulbs connected to the Intermatic Malibu timer.

To control outdoor lighting on large properties, use multiple Intermatic Malibu timers or consider purchasing a heavy-duty timer with a greater voltage capacity. A heavy-duty timer is also an ideal choice for pool pumps, aerators and heaters.

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Cathy Habas enjoys distilling even the most complicated home improvement tasks into bite-sized pieces. She believes in empowering homeowners one article at a time.