TLDR; setting up 3 way dimmers with Hue Ambiance (color and/or white) in some areas and normal LEDs in others. Just looking for the optimal setup with Red series dimmer + dumb switch vs. AUX.
I am in the process of starting to update my mid-90s home to have smart lighting. After far too much research, I have purchased and setup a Hubitat for fast local control and I’ve installed some Philips Hue Retrofit bulbs into some cans. I also have a couple of Red series switches in the mail.
The majority of my house is on 3 way switches and is fully neutral wired up. The bulk of the house will be on LED bulbs and dimmers only. From what I am reading I can simply replace one of the switches in the 3 way configuration with an Inovelli and leave the existing dumb switch as is, correct? There is a lot of discussion regarding the benefits of pairing two Red series dimmers together vs. using an auxiliary switch from GE. I have not physically touched a GE switch, but I assume the rocker stays neutral and it deflects in whatever direction you press it and reacts accordingly, whereas if I keep the old rocker I will lose the standard up/down polarity (which is often gone in a 3 configuration anyway…). Am I correct in understanding that if I use an AUX switch it will replicate the function of the main switch (i.e. press and hold to brighten or dim) and basically act as a remote control to the main switch whereby I will replicate all of the benefits of the Red without the LED status lights?
Due to different preference on color temperature at times of day I plan to use a few Red series switches with some Philips Hue bulbs in a couple of rooms that also have 3 way wiring. Will this function just like the above scenario with an AUX switch, however in this case I will set the main switch to allow constant power and use it as a scene controller to turn the Hue lights on and off? Likewise will the AUX switch also replicate that function? I presume with local control from Hubitat this will have a negligible impact on speed? Also, I assume I just need a Red switch rather than a Red dimmer in this scenario as it will just be acting as a scene controller rather than varying power levels?
Hopefully these questions are not too basic, but I appreciate any help getting started.
Am I correct in understanding that if I use an AUX switch it will replicate the function of the main switch (i.e. press and hold to brighten or dim) and basically act as a remote control to the main switch whereby I will replicate all of the benefits of the Red without the LED status lights?
Yes again! In any 3-Way circuit you can replace the dumb 3-Was switch with a GE Aux.
Dumb 3-way provides on/off function.
The aux switch provides on/off /dim functions
not currently but perhaps in the future the Aux might provide scene control as well
Also, I assume I just need a Red switch rather than a Red dimmer in this scenario as it will just be acting as a scene controller rather than varying power levels?
This is correct, however the dimmer has a full length LED strip, the Switch does not. I have used the controllable LEDs on the dimmer as annunciators for other things. i.e. flash red if one of the water sensors senses water, garage door open (not related to my alarm) etc
@JohnRob Thanks! So, it sounds like if I want 3 way control of my Hue bulbs I will have to use two Red series (dimmer or switch) setup in a Z wave association group between the switches which will then send central scene commands to the Hubitat which will then hit the hue hub and ultimately the bulbs.
Otherwise, for simple 3 way with LED bulbs it sounds like Red + AUX is the way to go.
Thanks! That is very helpful. A couple of the fixtures I’m using require candelabra bulbs. It seems like there is a very limited selection of these bulbs that work with these switches. This seems to be true of all the Jasco switches. Am I correct in assuming that adding a load resistor in to the circuit would likely eliminate a lot of problems, or do many bulbs just flat out not work with this line of switches?
It’s more the latter, although I don’t know if I would characterize it as “many”.
In neutral installations, there is sometimes enough voltage leaked by either the switch or through capacitive coupling that LED bulbs won’t turn off completely. In that case, a bypass will usually remedy the issue. Those bulbs are compatible, however, in all other respects.
Bulbs that flash or hum or whatever aren’t compatible and generally won’t by “fixed” using a bypass. One exception might be where a bulb has issue at max brightness, but in that case, reducing the max in the switch settings will remedy.