Zigbee Fan Canopy Module | Project Cheryl

Pre-Orders Are Open Now: Blue Series Smart Fan/Light Canopy Module | Inovelli

I want to dedicate this project to my mom (Cheryl), who was an amazing mother to me and my brother and sister, grandmother to my four girls, role model, and someone who always was there to encourage me and brag about Inovelli to my aunts and uncles! Most importantly, she taught me to work hard, never quit if you believe in something, and always keep a positive attitude as it will inevitably rub off on others. I will miss you and hope that your spirit can live on through this product!

Yeah that’s me circa 2001 - Eagle Scout celebration!

Project Team
Feel free to tag any of us with questions. I’ll (Eric H) be the go-to’s for overall project management, timeline and anything other than firmware related questions, whereas Eric M is the go-to for any firmware related questions. Either way, we’re all here to help!

As per our tradition of working with you amazing people, here’s what this thread allows us to do as a community.

  1. Allows us to keep everyone updated on the project status (either good or bad)
  2. Allows you to participate and help us develop amazing products together
  3. Enjoy each other’s company and have fun talking home automation

How this initial post will be laid out is in five sections:

  1. Project Overview
  2. Initial Hardware & Software Requirements (edited to remain up-to-date)
  3. Timeline (edited to remain up-to-date)
  4. Pinned Ideas & Shout-outs (edited to remain up-to-date)
  5. Weekly Recap


  • DATES & FUNCTIONS ARE NOT SET IN STONE: Just a reminder that all dates and functions are sometimes fluid. We have to make choices based on feasibility, opportunity costs, and overall timeline. I will be as transparent as possible on these decisions, but just a heads up, they may not always be exciting.
  • NO IDEA IS A BAD IDEA: Ok, some are, but honestly throw out anything that you can think of. If we use your idea, we’ll credit you and send you a free device, so take that shot!
  • VERSION 1 VS VERSION 2: Some ideas may be fantastic, but may not make the cut for the first version of the product. Once the product is locked in from a function standpoint, we’ll keep a tally of V2 ideas and then once the product is produced, we’ll move the ideas over to a suggestions/wishlist section.

Ok, let’s get this party started!

Project Overview
The purpose of this project is to bring back our second most popular switch which was the fan/light switch. To this day, it’s our #2 most searched for product on our site.

We will give it the ability to pair directly to an existing 2-1 switch or an upcoming button switch, giving you separate control over your fan and lights.

Project Name - Cheryl

I chose the name Cheryl to dedicate this to my mom, who passed away in 2019 of cancer. She was an incredible person who instilled in me a solid work ethic and a stubbornness to never give up (I wish she gave me her grammar skills, but unfortunately she didn’t – I got my dad’s math and science brain).

I wanted to name this project Cheryl because the goal is to have this pair directly to our button controller, which is named project Walt (my dad).

Cheryl - Hardware Requirements
The hardware for the canopy module can be found below.


NOTE: Subject to change as R&D has not kicked off.

Hardware - Controller (Look / Feel)

  • Heat Dissipating Cutouts: There should be multiple cutouts allowing for heat dissipation
  • 5 Wires: In order to control both the fan and light, the module will need five wires that are labeled
  • Hot/Line x1 (Black): Connect to 120V to power the module
  • White x2 (Neutral): Connect to neutral wires
  • Blue x1 (Light): Connect to the Light on the fan
  • Red x 1 (Fan Motor) Connect to the Fan motor
  • Slim Design: Should be smaller than our last version as there were space constraints within some canopies (target = Width = 2.1”, Height = 3.0”, Depth = 1.0”)
  • Zigbee Antenna: This antenna needs to be strong enough (and long enough) to reach the switch through metal fan canopies

Hardware - Features & Capabilities

The look and feel will be different than previous canopy module in that it will be smaller, but the concept will be the same for installation.

  • Heat dissipating cutouts: There should be multiple cutouts allowing for heat dissipations
  • 5 Wire’s: In order to control both the fan and light, the module will need five wires that are labeled
  • Hot/Line x1 (Black): Connect to 120V to power the module
  • White x2 (Neutral): Connect to neutral wires
  • Blue x1 (Light): Connect to the Light on the fan
  • Red x 1 (Fan Motor): Connect to the Fan motor
  • Slim Design: See appendix (Section A) – should be smaller than our last version as there were space constraints within some canopies (target = Width = 2.1”, Height = 3.0”, Depth = 1.0”)
  • Zigbee Antenna: This antenna needs to be strong enough (and long enough) to reach the switch through metal fan canopies

These features allow us to be versatile in any installation setting and experience level and should take the intimidation away from installing a canopy module.

  • Power Monitoring: switch should measure the power consumption
  • Leading/Trailing Edge Dimming: the controller should be able to switch between leading and trailing edge for better compatibility with bulbs

Cheryl - Software Requirements

  • Zigbee Binding (Multi-Channel & Endpoints): There should be a separate endpoint for each channel (Fan and Light) so that the button switch can be bound to each channel
  • OTA Ready: Ability to update firmware via OTA
  • Smart Bulb & Fan Mode: Ability to control smart bulbs and fans by locking power to the bulb/fan(s)

Ah, everyone’s favorite part. When is this flippin thing going to be released? Great question – here’s the high-level of what happens leading up to the first release of the timeline:

  1. We present a PRD (Project Request Document) that has all of the above info in it (see above section for the pdf)
  2. R&D (manufacturer) analyzes the PRD and we go back and forth until we can align on 90% of the product
  3. Initial Timeline is released and remaining 10% of product features are added/cut along the way

Again, just want to throw this out there – I don’t have a crystal ball so I can’t predict things that come up along the way. Trust me when I say we’re trying our best to get things launched on time.

Pre-Initial Timeline Milestones:

  • Present PRD: Completed
  • R&D Analyzation: In-Progress
  • Initial Timeline Released: Completed

Timeline (Estimated)

The initial timeline will be shown below once released and will be updated monthly.

  • Structure Design & Confirmation
    • Estimated Completion: Sept 9, 2023
    • Status: COMPLETED
  • Schematic & PCB Design
    • Estimated Completion: Sept 16, 2023
    • Status: COMPLETED
  • Hardware Sample
    • Estimated Completion: Sept 23, 2023
    • Status: COMPLETED
  • Software Development
    • Estimated Completion - Oct 28, 2023
    • Status: COMPLETED
  • Beta Sample Creation
    • Estimated Completion - Nov 4, 2023
    • Status: COMPLETED
  • Beta Testing
    • Estimated Completion - Dec 25, 2023
    • Status: IN PROGRESS
  • ETL Certification
    • Estimated Completion - Jan 30, 2024
    • Status: COMPLETED
  • FCC Certification
    • Estimated Completion - Jan 30, 2024
    • Status: COMPLETED
  • Zigbee Certification
    • Estimated Completion - Jan 30, 2024
    • Status: COMPLETED
  • Marketing Materials (Box, Insert, Manual)
    • Estimated Completion: Jan 9, 2024
    • Status: COMPLETED
  • Mass Production
    • Estimated Completion: Feb 12, 2024
    • Status: NOT STARTED

Pinned Ideas & Shout-Outs
Here are the ideas from the community. We sincerely appreciate them, we love them, and we couldn’t create the products we do without them. So, thank you for your input and let’s continue to innovate together and change the home automation category for the better (NOTE: if an idea is crossed out, it’s not because it wasn’t valid, nor was it something we didn’t consider – we’ve discussed it internally or with the manufacturer and unfortunately it was not feasible).



Monthly Recap
Every month I’ll provide a recap as well as edit the sections above so we can all keep track. If you have any specific questions you’d like me to ask, feel free to tag me and let me know so I can ask the manufacturer as well.

August 17th, 2023: We’ve officially kicked off this project with the manufacturer and will provide an official timeline once they give it to us.

August 18th, 2023: Official timeline has been released w/a target of mid-February 2024 for Mass Production to finish.

August 29th, 2023: Project update posted here: Zigbee Fan Canopy Module | Project Cheryl - #86 by Eric_Inovelli

November 30, 2023: I forgot to keep updating up here in the project description and only updated in the threads, so my fault. Quick update is that we’ve received the beta units last week and everyone has them in hand. I’ve tested two of them in my daughter’s rooms and they work amazing. Look/feel is solid and the firmware seems to be well ahead of what we projected. We’re looking to wrap up beta testing in December. Here’s a quick video of my testing:

January 6, 2024: Well, look at this… there’s a first in Inovelli history. We are a month ahead of schedule and have production scheduled for January 18th. Beta testing is wrapping up and all certifications are completed.



Well, I’ve learned two things tonight:

  1. Eric doesn’t sleep.
  2. Eric can read minds. Specifically, my mind, as I was thinking about exactly this while scrolling through the forums and product lines.

As someone who currrently uses a Blue Series via Home Assistant to trigger an RF blaster to “control” a ceiling fan with a light switch, this is exactly what I need.


A couple thoughts:

Why two separate neutral wires? Why not just keep 1 and wire nut or use a wago to connect all 3 (incoming, module, fan) together. Seems like you could save some space that one.

Also there’s no grounding wire. Do canopy modules not need one?

Do you plan on releasing a Z-Wave version as well that uses associations instead of binding?


Copy paste got you again


Will it have relays at all? Not really sure what the purpose of this for a canopy module :thinking:

Please ensure adequate AWG for wiring. Nothing like hooking up line voltage from a 12/14 AWG wire to a 20 AWG wire…

Same question as @rohan. Doesn’t seem to be needed. Folks can just have 3 wires into the wire nut for canopy neutral, fan neutral and house neutral.

Is it worth having any status lights on it to aid in troubleshooting or seeing if it even has power to it? Not asking for a LED bar, but maybe a LED that will be solid when power is applied and flash blue when pairing. Perhaps a different color when the binding is completed.

Also you may want to highlight that this canopy is ONLY used for AC fans

This is a great idea! Something like a single LED. Should be very cheap to add in.


Think bigger! Led bar with animations indicating status :grin:

Wooo no more IR! :raised_hands:

Really cool sounding project, looking forward to hearing more details in the coming months!


I like this! It should also probably have a single button (config button) for initial setup, factory reset, pairing mode, etc.

Sleep is for humans lol jk

Hmm, yeah I guess our former canopy module only had one neutral, so that’s definitely something we can do.

Good question, I’ll have to check with the engineers – our former version did not have one, so I’m guessing not as it was UL certified. But that’s a great question as to why it wouldn’t need one.

Yes, if the demand is there for Zigbee, we will release a Z-Wave one. I’m hoping to!


Good point, no it will not have one. I just forgot to remove it from the PRD when I was copy/pasting last night. Confirmed with the manufacturer that there will be no relay in these.

Good reminder, yeah that’s never fun.

Yeah, that was a good catch by Rohan – I don’t think it’s needed either.

Yeah that may be something we could add. I was thinking maybe the switch would light up during the binding process, but it would be a good reassurance if the canopy lit up too.

Yeah good point!

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OKOK Fine… External LED attachments so we can connect a WS2812 addressable LED strip to each fan blade and have a spinning light show!


Hahaha. My wife would lose it. I love it.


[Feature request]
Allow switching direction of fan

Using the Ceiling Fan Year Round
In the summer, use the ceiling fan in the counterclockwise direction. While standing directly under the ceiling fan you should feel a cool breeze. The airflow produced creates a wind-chill effect, making you “feel” cooler. In the winter, reverse the motor and operate the ceiling fan at low speed in the clockwise direction. This produces a gentle updraft, which forces warm air near the ceiling down into the occupied space. Remember to adjust your thermostat when using your ceiling fan — additional energy and dollar savings could be realized with this simple step!
Ceiling Fan Installation and Usage Tips | ENERGY STAR


Hey this is a great idea – we’ve looked into it before and I’m not sure it’s possible, but happy to look at it again. Especially since I do this in Michigan with our fans.

Essentially, there is a toggle switch on the side of the fan that you would switch to change the direction of the fan and there is no way to wire into that toggle.

I know on some new DC fans, it’s possible, but unfortunately this canopy module will only work with AC fans because DC is too hard to manufacture towards the masses as everyone’s fan seems to be different (at least this is what we’re told, I can do some more research).


Project Update: The manufacturer released their initial timeline on this project (they’re hungry to get started!) and it seems a bit aggressive, so I’m adding a couple of months based on my track record of being 0-16 in hitting timelines lol.

They are predicting they can finish by the end of the year, but I’m going to go with mid-February.

On one hand, I can’t imagine this being too much different than our 2-1 switch that they developed, but on the other hand, this will be a multi-point product (fan + light) so who knows.

Either way, I built in extra time for beta testing because I feel like a month is very optimistic and then gave us an extra two weeks as a buffer.

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@harjms @rohan @MRobi – what do you guys think of this new mockup based on feedback of removing the extra neutral wire, adding an LED indicator and config button for pairing? (Still checking on your ground wire question @rohan)

I figure the LED and config button should be on the slim part as the module will be placed in the fan bracket horizontally so the slim part will be visible (whereas if we put the LED on the top, it wouldn’t be visible unless you left the canopy module hanging before re-assembly).



Looks great to me!! Good thinking on the slim part to keep it visible

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Looks great. Make sure RGBW is spec’d out for the LED. Could you change the label “For Light” to match motor labeling (“To Light”)?


Looks great Eric! One more thing on labeling, I noticed that the motor has an L at the end of the label indicating load. If that’s needed, it’s worth adding to the light wire as well for consistency. However, I’m not sure it’s really needed at all. Labeling them To Motor and To Light should be sufficient

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