Advice Needed - Lighting issue

project_lighting

(Brian Holder) #1

Ok, so I have a somewhat annoying lighting issue. There are 16 can lights in my basement main room. The main room usage wise has 2 sections, half the room is a tv area, and the other half has a poker table setup.

In a nutshell each side has 8 lights.

I installed 16 GE Link lights into these cans, and removed the switches so they are always on, so they are controlled either via the app, or via a wall remote with 4 buttons. (I also have a minimote and an IR controller that can fire off commands as well)

In the current configuration I have a couple of automations and virtual buttons configured so that I can fire up several “scenes”

Those scenes are : Poker Room (turns on 8 poker area lights), TV Room, (turns on 6 lights in tv area, DOES NOT turn on 2 lights right above tv screen to prevent glare.) All off (turns all 16 off), All On(all 16 on), Movie pause(turns on 3 lights in middle of room to lowest setting (ie someone getting a snack in a movie, or bathroom break), and Snacking setting,(which only turns on the 2 lights above the couch to a very low setting, so you can see your food, but still have a dark room for movie viewing)

Awesome, except!!! - the link lights are horribly fidgety, they loose connection with the hub here and there, and with 16 of them, it seems like a constant battle where once a month or so at least 1 light will stop functioning as intended. I have also randomly had lights turn on in the middle of the night or at other times for no reason.

Due to the wiring in place in the basement(before I bought the house) the 16 lights are on 3 switches, but the layout of those circuits does not align with my usage. they have 2 lights above where a bookcase was, 6 lights around the outside of the room are one circuits and the remaining 8 lights go down the middle of the room on the third. So light circuits 2 & 3 span both the poker area and the tv area…

So it seems my options at this point are:
A: replace the 16 link lights with something that will function better, and keep my current scene management
B: rewire the circuits to align with my usage - its all drywall… but we had a gas leak(good grief!!!) and had to replace all the gas lines in the house, so I have access holes in almost all the places I would need them. I think I would need 1 additional hole for sure or 2 max to redo the circuits, to something close to the 2 room usage I have. - In this case after rewiring I would put in zwave dimmer switches on the new circuits so they could still be controlled, but would just replace the bulbs with standard led dimmer bulbs.
C: ??? is there another option I am missing?

Its really getting frustrating dealing with the link lights, and right now since the “lightswitch” is one of those aeotech 4 button remote deals, people seem to be confused how to turn the lights on manually.

Thoughts/suggestions/ideas?


(jkp) #2

The GE Link bulbs are really bad! I got tired of mine and replaced them with Philips Hue bulbs and have been happy with that decision :slight_smile:


(Brian Holder) #3

Do you need the Hue bridge to make it work with smartthings?


(jkp) #4

Hue bridge is recommended for many reasons. One, it does firmware updates on the bulbs. Two, when the ST hub is offline, you should still have access to your bulbs with the Hue bridge.

Note if you are in the U.S.: Amazon Prime Day is about 7 weeks from now. A good opportunity to get some devices at a lower price.


#5

GE links are not fully standards compliant, Which is the reason they have never been certified as a “works with SmartThings” and why they have their own community FAQ for what to do when they lose network connection. Which they will.

( The GE switches are officially compatible; the GE bulbs are not.

I got rid of mine as well after the first six months and replace them with Hues on a hue bridge and have also been very happy. :sunglasses:

While technically possible to use the Hues without the bridge, it can mess up the network for your other zigbee devices, so it’s really not recommended.