Dimmer Switch question

Question as I couldn’t find the answer my Sylvania recessed lights don’t support local dming and only support it through zigbee commands. I am planning to use hubitat to join zibee and zwave products.

Can your switch dimming circuit send dimming commands to the bulb through the hub and not down the line and only act as an on/off for the line?

That’s a great question @fonzi03 and I believe @anon14959390 has this setup at his house, so he may be able to chime in.

However, they should work the same as Philips Hue which is what I have as the Hue’s are also ZigBee.

Kind of – you won’t be able to send dim commands to dim in real time (ie: if you hold the switch up, it won’t send a dim up command) but you can have various settings on the switch that send a dim level or on/off (ie: if you double tap the switch, you can make it so the bulbs turn onto x%) – here’s how I have it set up and hopefully this will help answer this for you:

  • Switch is directly wired to a smart bulb
  • There’s a function on the switch to disable the internal relay (so it physically does not cut power to the bulb) – this is turned on
  • Then, using Z-Wave scene control, I have various taps set up to have the switch turn the light on to various colors and dim levels – here’s how they’re setup in my daughters room:
    • Tap UP 1x = Turns on Hue bulb to last level
    • Tap DOWN 1x = Turns off Hue bulb
    • Tap UP 2x = Turns on Hue bulb to Purple at 100%
    • Tap DOWN 2x = Turns Hue bulb to 75%
    • Tap UP 3x = Turns on Hue bulb to Pink at 100%
    • Tap DOWN 3x = Turns Hue bulb to 50%
    • Tap UP 4x = Turns on Hue bulb to Green at 100%
    • Tap DOWN 4x = Turns Hue bulb to 25%
    • Tap UP 5x = Turns on Hue bulb to Blue at 100%
    • Tap DOWN 5x = Turns Hue bulb to 15%

So, as you can see, it’s not as seamless as dimming in real time, but it works. When we launch our new Z-Wave bulbs shortly, they will have the ability to, “associate” with the switches and you’ll be able to dim in real-time as the bulb does not have to wait for communication from the HUB (when associated the bulb and switch talk directly to one another).

Hope this makes sense?

I see, so in theory with programming would it be possible to say.
Scene 1, up press once equals dim at lowest interval
Scene 2 up press twice dim to full brightness
Scene 3 down press twice turn off
Remaining scenes if at a particular known percentage then 1 up or down click would increase/decrease the dim percentage respectively?

I guess meaning a single up click would only equal scene 1 if the feedback status is equal to 0%. And a double down click is always off. Else If a single up click is pressed while feedback is greater than 0% then a single up press now equals ramp by set percentage?

All this would be based off knowing the current light status kind of, it wouldn’t need real time feedback because according to the light switch you have two constants. Double down click equals 0% and single up click while at 0% equals say 10%. Single up click while the switch thinks the current status is say 10% increases it to a set value of 20%.

So because you’re somewhat “faking” the feedback you don’t have to worry about returned info from the device. I do this in Crestron code when I can’t get return feedback or it is shoddy feedback.

I understand Scene 2 (which is possible) but I think my mind literally exploded on 1 & 3 :joy:.

For Scene 1 are you asking if you can make it the lowest dim level (ie: 1%) - I think the word interval threw me off.

I’m not sure how to accomplish Scene 3 bc how I’m interpreting the last sentence is I think you’re asking if various clicks can change the dim level by 1% (like a normal dimmer).

Let me ask the brains of the team lol. I believe the first part is possible (single click equals different output based on percentage), but it would depend on the HUB. It’s the latter half of the paragraph that I don’t think can be accomplished if I’m understanding correctly.

This part:

Can you clarify what ramp means? Are you asking for the speed of the dimmer?

Alright I think I’m tracking now but I don’t want to delete the part I’ve been typing out for a while now on my phone haha.

So, what you’re asking is based on the level the switch is at (and has reported to the HUB = ie: 0, 10, 20, etc) if you tap up 1x, you could set it so the switch sends a set increase or decrease increment % to the HUB to send to a ZigBee bulb (or any bulb)?

If so, I’m going to have to check on this. My gut tells me this would be a HUB specific scenario as the switch wouldn’t be able to fake its level.

Hang tight on this one - we’ll figure it out!

Sorry I know it’s getting into fairly granular in the details.

I have an example of a ramp up command in Lua scripting if your dev team would want to take a peak at it. Basically it changed the speed at which it increases/decreases based off the current level.

Ultimately it’s something like
If set level < 45 then increase by 15
If set level < 85 then increase by 10
If set level < 100 then increase by 5

Then the opposite for decrement commands
This allows for smoother dimming with impactful differences where you want them

I guess I was somewhat overthinking it previously. This is all I would want the single click to do.

Double click in either direction would turn to 0 or 100 respectively.

No as far as feedback is concerned, since the switch knows it sending a set value IE go to 15% can’t the feedback be forced since you know the light must go to that value? Then setup a poll command say every 5 seconds or so to parse the actual current value in case someone changes it through the hub instead of at the switch level?

So the more I learn about these smart things the more I realize my question is totally for the hub community as you stated.

From what I can see it absolutely can be done I would just have to write my own code which I’m looking into learning groovy for hubitat don’t know how long it will take but if I make any custom drivers for your guys stuff I’ll definitely post them in the developers section of hubitat but do you have anywhere to post them here?

Before you start writing code you may want to check out an HE app called “Mirror and Mirror Me child”. Its supposed to mirror a master controller to multiple slaves. Also, I think this all could be implemented in RM. Playing around in RM last night, I was able to toggle (on/off) some Hue bulbs but didn’t have time to try tracking the dimmer commands.

Fonzi03. I did have a chance to play with the HE Mirror app this evening. I tried it with a Z-wave dimmer and a Hue light bulb. It works… However as I expected, the transitions weren’t as good as I would hope (clunky/jerky). I think this may have something to do with the loop timing (i.e. the time it takes commands to go from the dimmer to the HE then to the Hue hub and then finally out the to hue light bulb. If you use a regular Zigbee bulb (i.e. no hue hub involved) maybe the performance will be a little better. Something to try.

Can’t the HE directly control the bulbs without the hue hub? May be faster that way.

Yeah I have seen mirror and that made sense maybe I can use it I’ll have to dig into the code and see.

I don’t understand the differences in the protocols (Zigbee vs Zigbee Light Link vs Zigbee 3.0) well enough to answer that intelligently. Maybe someone here can help explain it. I have read enough on the HE site to know that people have run into issues trying to bring the hue lights into their zigbee (HE) mesh and have decided to keep their lights on the Hue hub.