Dimmer Switches | Random Shut-off Issue | Data Collection Thread

Devices:
LZW31 (Gen 2 - Black Series Dimmer) & LZW31-SN (Gen 2 - Red Series Dimmer)

Purpose:
This is a thread that will be used to provide to the manufacturer. The point of it is not to troubleshoot, but rather to collect data so that we can synthesize down any commonalities.

That said, if you are having a problem with the Dimmer Switch turning off sporadically and experience similar issues to this thread: LZW31-SN turns off randomly

Questions:
If you do have this issue, can you please answer the following questions for us:

  • What type of bulb do you have connected to the switch (LED, CFL, Halogen, etc)?
  • What is the approximate Load Wattage?
  • Bonus Points: Make/Model of your bulb(s)?
  • Switch Setup (ie: Single-Pole, 3-Way, 4-Way, etc)?
  • AC Power Type: Neutral or Non-Neutral Setup?

I think that’s it in terms of questions. Excited to get to the bottom of this!

  • What type of bulb do you have connected to the switch (LED, CFL, Halogen, etc)?

4 standard incandescent PAR downlights.

  • What is the approximate Load Wattage?

4x65W although some are specified as 130V, so they are probably using a bit less wattage at 120V

  • Bonus Points: Make/Model of your bulb(s)?
    3xFEIT, 1xGE

  • Switch Setup (ie: Single-Pole, 3-Way, 4-Way, etc)?
    3-way with dumb switch.

I have a much longer description of how I got here on another thread, but I think the specific thing about my case is that it is not random. It is very clearly an issue with the SPDT dumb 3-way switch set in only one direction (connecting to the traveller wire, not the load wire from the the dimmer). It is also clearly related to brightness. If I have the max brightness on full and then turn on the lights (with any method) they ramp up and then stay on for about 10 seconds, at which time you hear the relay click and they turn off. I can turn them on again and the same thing happens. If I set the max brightness to 85 or 90 all is well (and not much real difference in brightness seen)

Experiments: Clamped a vice-grip on the outside tab of the dimmer as a heat sink. No obvious change.

Set the brightness to 95% and it was ok. Powered off with breaker to install in box. After power back on, the 10-second power off happened again until I lowered the brightness way down to 50% and then back up to 90 or 95 again.

Bulb: 2x LED wafer lights
Wattage: At 80% brightness the switch reports 15 w. As a side note, I was experiencing a flicker when set to 100% which also went away at 80%.
Switch setup: 3-way with dumb switch
AC Power: Neutral

I had gone about a week since I had a shutdown event and to test I just set max brightness to 99 and it shut off just a few seconds later. Back to 80% and it’s staying on.

Just happened now.

Here’s the log from homeseer:

Dec-03 22:00:05 Z-Wave Device: Closter TV Ceiling lights Watts Set to 0 (0 Watts)
Dec-03 22:00:02 Z-Wave Device: Closter TV Ceiling lights Switch Multilevel Set to 0
Dec-03 22:00:02 Z-Wave Device: Closter TV Ceiling lights parent Set to OFF
Dec-03 21:55:23 Z-Wave Device: Closter TV Ceiling lights Watts Set to 57.6 (57.6 Watts)
Dec-03 21:55:19 Z-Wave Device: Closter TV Ceiling lights Switch Multilevel Set to ON
Dec-03 21:55:18 Z-Wave Device: Closter TV Ceiling lights Switch Multilevel Set to 255
Dec-03 21:55:18 Z-Wave Device: Closter TV Ceiling lights parent Set to ON

The lights turned off, then I heard the relay click in the switch. I turned on the lights from the inovelli switch itself.

I am running 5 bulbs.

They are all BR40 LEDs but I need a ladder to find make and model.

3 way switch with line and load separate boxes. One dumb switch. Using a neutral wire.

The log indicates that the switch turned itself off, no other external influence (web, mobile, Google Home)

Thank you for your help with this!!! I have 3 different installs of the LZW31-SN dimmer all with dumb switches that exhibit this sporadic behavior. Note that I read in a thread that if I lowered the max brightness to 80% that they would stop turning off. After switching max brightness to 80% they haven’t turned off. When set to default 100% they will sporadically turn off. I also have 5x separate installs of just the LZW31-SN dimmer that are single pole with the same bulbs set to 100% and no issues there.

Here is my sporadic issue setup:

  1. 4-way
  2. 3-way
  3. 3-way
  • What type of bulb do you have connected to the switch (LED, CFL, Halogen, etc)?
    1. LED
    2. LED
    3. LED
  • What is the approximate Load Wattage?
    1. 25W total (4x LED bulbs at 80% max load setting from Smartthings Device Handler)
    2. 10W total (2x LED bulbs at 80% max load setting from Smartthings Device Handler)
    3. 25W total (4x LED bulbs at 80% max load setting from Smartthings Device Handler)
  • Bonus Points: Make/Model of your bulb(s)?
    1,2,3 - All using the same bulb - Philips 65-Watt Equivalent with Warm Glow BR30 Dimmable LED ENERGY STAR Light Bulb, Soft White - Model# 531731 - Purchased from home depot at this link - https://www.homedepot.com/p/Philips-65-Watt-Equivalent-with-Warm-Glow-BR30-Dimmable-LED-ENERGY-STAR-Light-Bulb-Soft-White-3-Pack-531731/304811194
  • Switch Setup (ie: Single-Pole, 3-Way, 4-Way, etc)?
    1. 4-way - dumb switches
    2. 3-way - dumb switch
    3. 3-way - dumb switch
  • AC Power Type: Neutral or Non-Neutral Setup?
  1. Neutral
  2. Neutral
  3. Neutral

Specs noted below (two similar configurations listed, but both show the same behavior):

@Eric_Inovelli - As requested I have posted my problem here. - Thanks

  • 12x LED Candelabra Bulbs
  • Wattage = 12 bulbs x 4W each = 48 Watts total
  • Bulb brand is Hizashi 4W, 40W equivalent
  • Bulb Info Here
  • Switch Setup is Single Pole, Non-neutral
  • The switch with the issue is LZW-31SN

I verified that the settings for switch setup and AC power type are correct.

If I set the brightness to up to 80%, everything is fine, above that things get weird. Either the light shuts itself off, or the light starts flickering and the switch “locks up”, becomes unresponsive and must be reset with the air gap switch.

Edit: after an email from Eric, I changed some settings and things are a little better. If I leave the setup as the factory defaults, the switch either shuts itself off when it approaches max brightness (if ramping up from the off state) or the light begins to flicker when approaching max brightness (if ramping up from being on at a lower brightness setting).

At Eric’s suggestion, I tried changing the switch parameters using Hubitat, I have set the maximum level (parameter 6) to 75, and the minimum level (parameter 5) to 40. With these settings, setting the switch dimming to 5% gives a very dim brightness, and setting it to 100% gives a bright light, but the light stays on and does not flicker, and the switch behaves pretty much normally.

Also it should be noted that I have several other rooms where neutrals are available, and have installed more of the LZW-31SN and LZW-31 switches using the same bulbs and loads, and things seem fine.

So in my case, this is specific to the combination of these bulbs and the absence of a neutral wire.

Okay, I thought I was immune to issue until today when the dumb switch was thrown the other direction and I tried to set the lights above 90%… Within a 5-10 seconds, my dimmer turned off. Again, This only happens in my 3-way setup and only when the dumb switch is set to the other position. When the dumb switch is in the other position, I do NOT see any issues with the light turning off. Nor do I see it in my single pole setups (2 ea). So here is the data you have requested:

  • What type of bulb do you have connected to the switch (LED, CFL, Halogen, etc)? 4 LED BR30
  • What is the approximate Load Wattage? The power meter is reporting approximately 27W
  • Bonus Points: Make/Model of your bulb(s)? Philips 9W (65W) E26 Warm Glow Dimmable Bulb
  • Switch Setup (ie: Single-Pole, 3-Way, 4-Way, etc)? 3-Way with dumb switch
  • AC Power Type: Neutral or Non-Neutral Setup? Neutral

Type of bulbs: 3x LED, then switched to 2x incandescent + 1x CFL – same problem.
Load: With LEDs, 14W. With incandescent + CFL, 95W.
Make/model: LEDs were 1x Hudson Lighting Dimmable LED Edison 6W + 2x Hizashi Dimmable LED Candelabra 4W. Other setup – don’t know.
Switch setup: 4-way with dumb.
AC power type: Neutral

After 2 days of debugging, my symptoms aren’t quite identical to anyone else’s that I could find in either this or the other thread, but they’re similar enough that it almost certainly has to be from the same issue:

In one parity of the 2 dumb switches, indicator LEDs on the switch itself, as well as status on Hubitat, agree with whatever state I try to set it to (on/off and level) via either Hubitat or the switch, but the lights generally don’t come on at all, even though the relay clicks. In a few instances, if I set the brightness lower (I tried 50 and 80) via Set Level on Hubitat, the lights come on at the correct level, but this only sometimes works, and never works if I simply turn it on from either Hubitat or the switch (even though it’s set to resume the previous brightness level). Beyond that I haven’t quite figured out the pattern.

In the other parity of the dumb switches, the lights happily come on at full brightness (or any lower level I want), but if I switch it off (via either Hubitat or the switch) it just turns itself back on after usually less than 1 second, correctly reporting that new state to Hubitat.

On a probably-unrelated-but-possibly-related note, the switch seems very sensitive to static electricity. Several times when I touched the paddle, before pressing anything, it would flash red, green, and blue and change state (usually turn off I think). This strangely also seems to extend the period it would stay off (in the 2nd dumb switch parity) to 10 or 15 seconds, but this would consistently decay back to under 1 second without any further static power-up.

UPDATE: I was re-reading the printed instructions that came with my switches and noticed a tiny warning that they won’t work with illuminated dumb switches. I didn’t even think about the fact that 1 of the dumb switches in my 4-way setup was illuminated, but in hindsight that obviously would mess with the smart switch since even when off the dumb switch is sending a tiny amount of current through the circuit that the smart switch expects to be dead. In any case, I switched it out with a non-illuminated dumb switch, and that fixed my backwards issue of lights refusing to stay off. Instead, it’s now (roughly) the same issue everyone else here has, which is that the lights will turn itself off after a few seconds (using the LED bulbs; I haven’t tried the other ones). Reducing the max brightness to 90% seems to fix this for me, so far anyway.

Re Static electricity: I second that sensitivity, although I had a different symptom. But I do wonder whether you had the ground (not neutral) hooked up when you say this static behavior. I did NOT have the ground hooked up yet when I saw mine. Wondering if the ground would have harmlessly drained off the static.

My ground is/was hooked up. In any case, the ground would prevent static from building up in the switch itself, but it wouldn’t prevent the static I built up in my hand from jumping the potential difference between me and the switch. In your case, you might have been zapped by the static built up in your switch (i.e., you were the ground), not the other way round, but it would probably have the same effect re the switch’s sensitivity.

  • What type of bulb do you have connected to the switch (LED, CFL, Halogen, etc)? 6 LED BR30
  • What is the approximate Load Wattage? 6 bulbx x 13W each = 78W
  • Bonus Points: Make/Model of your bulb(s)? Feit 13 Watt BR30 LED Dimmable Flood Light Bulb
  • Switch Setup (ie: Single-Pole, 3-Way, 4-Way, etc)? 3-Way with dumb switch
  • AC Power Type: Neutral or Non-Neutral Setup? Neutral

FYI, I got another LZW31 dimmer and installed it in a very similar arrangement to the one I talked about in the first reply–no problems at all. Traditional 3-way switch, neutral, EXCEPT only one FEIT 60-watt bulbs and 3 no-name LED floods from a school fund-raiser.

  • What type of bulb do you have connected to the switch (LED, CFL, Halogen, etc)?

LED

  • What is the approximate Load Wattage?

24W going by the wattage of the bulbs.

The LZW31-SN reports 20W.

  • Bonus Points: Make/Model of your bulb(s)?

Philips, part number 9290002580

https://www.amazon.com/Philips-LED-Dimmable-BR40-Light/dp/B00JQXMTRO

  • Switch Setup (ie: Single-Pole, 3-Way, 4-Way, etc)?

3-Way Toggle. The wiring diagram is the “3-way installation (Line/Load in Separate Boxes)” diagram. That’s at the bottom of page 6 in the installation guide that came with the LZW31-SN.

  • AC Power Type: Neutral or Non-Neutral Setup?

Neutral


Dead ends:

  • I’ve set parameter 8 to 0 manually, even though 0 is the default. This reduced the occurrence of the problem from nearly 100% to about 10%.

  • I’ve excluded the switch, reset it to factory default, and reincluded it. For a while the problem did not happen, but it eventually came back. It happens maybe 5% of the time now.

Have the LZ31 installed with the relay disabled controlling 4 HUE BR30 RGBW bulbs

  • What type of bulb do you have connected to the switch: Relay disabled for smart bulb configuration, 4 HUE BR30 Color bulbs
  • What is the approximate Load Wattage? - 9W x 4 bulbs = 36W
  • Bonus Points: Make/Model of your bulb(s)? Philips Hue BR30 color
  • Switch Setup (ie: Single-Pole, 3-Way, 4-Way, etc)? Single pole with relay disabled
  • AC Power Type: Neutral or Non-Neutral Setup? Neutral.
    [/quote]
  • What type of bulb do you have connected to the switch (LED, CFL, Halogen, etc)? 16 LED
  • What is the approximate Load Wattage? 64W
  • Bonus Points: Make/Model of your bulb(s)? Hizashi 90+ CRI LED Candelabra Bulb
  • Switch Setup (ie: Single-Pole, 3-Way, 4-Way, etc)? 3-Way with dumb switch
  • AC Power Type: Neutral or Non-Neutral Setup? Neutral

In case it matters, All the individual dimmers I used work fine, this is one from the Holiday box set.

Second switch out of that Holiday box has same issue. I unpaired and repaired both and set max dim at 85 and its been OK for an hour.

Second switch controls 2 BR30 9w LED Phillips

I have two LZW-31 and both are having the shutoff issue.

I’m having the issue where the dimmer will come on from 0 to full brightness, and then trip off in about 1-2 seconds. When it’s happening, it will happen multiple times in a row until I throw the dumb switch to the other direction.

I’m using Home Assistant 0.103.2 with the OpenZWave 1.4 configs shared by akguwabr.

Parameter 21 is set to “Neutral”
Parameter 22 is set to “3 way toggle”

Yesterday my wife was complaining about the newfangled technology taking too long, so I set the ramp rate to 0. I don’t think I’ve had the problem since, but if I do I will try the 80% trick.

  • What type of bulb do you have connected to the switch (LED, CFL, Halogen, etc)?
    

LED

  • What is the approximate Load Wattage?
    

7 Watts per bulb according to manufacturer’s specs. 4 bulbs on one dimmer (28w), 2 on the other (14w). Setup in recessed fixtures.

  • Bonus Points: Make/Model of your bulb(s)?
    

Philips 471177 according to Home Depot’s site. Here’s the UL info.

  • Switch Setup (ie: Single-Pole, 3-Way, 4-Way, etc)?
    

3 way. the 4 can circult is a line & load in same box setup, the 2 can circuit is line and load in separate boxes. The dimmers are in the same triple box with a Insteon SwitchLinc Dimmer.

  • AC Power Type: Neutral or Non-Neutral Setup?
    

Neutral

Edit: The wife got home before me and tried to turn the lights on, and they would not stay on. When I got home I set the dimmers to 80% max. So far so good… but it’s only been a few hours and a few on/off cycles.

Adding my own story to the mix. Same issue with the dimmer shutting off after some time when power is going through the traveler, but not through the load wire. Unique to me is that I have installed about 12 dimmers around the house, in single pole, 3-way and 4-way configs. All are driving LED loads and all are connected to dumb switches.

The issue so far only occurs on 2-3 of them and not the whole set. The dimmers all came out of the holiday packs.

I am currently testing the 80% fix identified earlier to see if that resolves the issue

  • What type of bulb do you have connected to the switch (LED, CFL, Halogen, etc)? LED
  • What is the approximate Load Wattage? 43W, 62W, 57W (as reported by dimmers)
  • Bonus Points: Make/Model of your bulb(s)? TCP LED model L7R0D2527K 7.5W Listed rating
  • Switch Setup (ie: Single-Pole, 3-Way, 4-Way, etc)? 3 / 4 way
  • AC Power Type: Neutral or Non-Neutral Setup? Neutral