Hey there…I’ve searched but come up empty on this question…so either my Google-fu is failing me or I’m just missing it because I can’t be the first person who’s dealt with this. Hoping some kind soul here might give me a pointer before my meeting with the electrician tomorrow.
I’m almost done building a new house, and I’ve gone with Blue Series 2-in-1 switches through for lights. I’m not an electrician, but I know there’s neutrals in all boxes, etc. so everything should be good there. My electrician has just finished installing all of these blue series switches.
The on/off ones work great. My question is clarifying how to program the smart+smart multi (3/4) way ones. With electrical final inspection coming up the electrician wants to be confident these are all wired and working as expected. It hopefully goes without saying that as I’ve not officially closed and moved in yet, I do not yet have my home assistant gateway on site or set up yet.
Innovelli’s doc here:
Not only is incorrectly reversing the “bottom of the paddle (C)” and the “config button (A)” in the pre-setup section > written example (the pictures shows these letters reversed), it also seems to only address multi way (dumb) and multi way (aux) configuration programming.
Do I simply configure both sides of each 3 way as “Smart” switch type? And if so, which type of “wiring type” would be appropriate for my “smart-switches-throughout” setup?
I hope I’m super over complicating this and this is a dumb question…but I’d greatly appreciate any light anyone here might be able to shed. Thank you!
When you have a smart switch coupled with an Aux or dumb switch(es), then that is a multi-way and the configuration programming that you referenced applies. With this configuration, the smart switch communicates with the dumb or Aux switch(es) via the conductors that run between them.
However, if I understand correctly, you are not using dumb or Aux switches in your multi-ways. Instead, you are using Blues in each position. If that is the case, they are configured differently. In this configuration, two or more Zigbee smart switches communicate with each other using the Zigbee network, NOT the conductors between them. They are even wired differently than if you were using Aux or dumb switches.
To configure the multiple Blue mult-ways, you will need to use Zigbee binding. Unfortunately, AFAIK, you will need the switches connected to your hub to do that. I understand that you haven’t moved in yet and do not yet have an operational hub at the location, but I think that’s going to have to be in place to move forward.
I see…ok that is very helpful I think, and starting to make a bit more sense. Yes you are correct in that I’ve got blue 2-in-1 switches on all sides of any multi way. That would explain why I have been having trouble finding the specific example of this.
So follow up question then - at this point and time (without my hub or anything else in place), would it be expected that the first/primary switch (I believe it would be termed the line side?) in any given multi way would operate the expected lights in basic on/off fashion, while the other switch(s) wouldn’t do anything at present?
I’m assuming that’s correct since on/off single pole is how they’re configured out of the box, but would appreciate the confirmation as it would help during my meeting with the electrician tomorrow.
Yes, one switch in the leg will have the load conductor to the light(s) connected to it. Before you bind it, it’s basically a 2-way i.e a single switch setup. That primary switch should work properly either as an on/off or a dimmer.
The other switches in the leg should power up, but they won’t do anything other than that.
Sweet. Ok that’s the behavior I’m seeing so far so that’s a good sign. Ok last question for tonight if I can bother you once more?
When I get to the point where my hub is in place and I’m pairing the switches, etc. - should I do anything special programming wise with the load/primary multi way switch and/or any of the other switches “behind” it?
Or should I just leave them all in the standard out-of-box settings of “single pole” wiring type, and “on/off” (or “smart” for my hue bulbs) switch type? Obviously understanding that the zigbee binding process will be what any multi way switches need to function as expected?
I’m confused about this as well. When you have multiple blue switches for one light, the way it’s wired is as if you have a “single pole” switch switch (the main/master switch) that actually controls the load (recommend making this clear when you name the device!), and a second (and even third) blue switch that is simply wired to be always powered, but doesn’t control the load. This is implicit, but I think not really spelled out explicitly like this in the instructions.
It’s unclear to me what effect changing “switch type” in this circumstance does, as it seems that it’s intended for blue switch plus an aux or dumb switch, not for two blue switches. However, these controls can also change the dimming type (leading vs trailing edge vs full wave) depending on how they are configured. When I was first setting my multiple blue 3 ways up, I set them all to 3 way dumb mode as it seemed like that’s what the instructions were recommending. I now think you probably just leave them in Single Pole mode.
The key is that now you have to bind the blue switches together for two reasons, one is so that the secondary blue switch actually can control the main blue switch, and the second is so that the two switches sync their LEDs.
The instructions state the following: set up the main switch to control the light (either smart bulb mode, in which case you probably want to zigbee bind the switch to the bulb, or not smart bulb mode), then directly zigbee bind both switches to each other. Main → Secondary and Secondary → Main
HOWEVER, if you are going to control your light in home assistant, homekit, smartthings, whatever, you may not want to do it this way if you are using smart bulbs. That’s because you probably want to be able to change the color of the bulbs, not just turn them on and off or dim them. What you need to do in this case is create zigbee groups.
It seems the easiest way is to create a zigbee group that contains the smart bulbs that the switch controls, and both of the switches. Then, each switch should be directly zigbee bound to the zigbee group. You control the zigbee group in your home assistant app or homekit, which then means that changes to the light get passed on to the switches. The switches will not monitor your bulbs and change their state on their own.
The ZHA instructions recommend creating multiple groups, a Group A with the main switch and the bulb, a Group B with the secondary switch and the bulb, and then binding the main switch to group B and the secondary switch to Group A. But this misses that you still need a group C with the bulb and all of the switches for Home Assistant control. And… as far as I can tell, creating group A and group B are unnecessary steps in this case. I haven’t gotten confirmation on this, but also haven’t noticed any side effects yet.