Automating a reclining couch

Hi all,

I recently bought two reclining couches for my living room. Each couch has two seats and each seat has two sets of toggle switchs. One toggle for the main recline and one for independently adjusting the head rest. The toggle switches each essentially have two momentary buttons (eg one button for reclining and one for bringing it up). The buttons essentially control a motor in opposite directions.

I am interested in automating this into my Smarthings hub. The use case is that sometimes the kids leave the recliners in the ‘up’ position and I would like to be able to get them back to their normal position remotely or even automatically (eg when executing the ‘Goodnight’ set of actions at night).

Ideally I also want to be able to see a ‘%recline’ in the app.

Looking for suggestions on how I would be able to do this. I’m quite handy with opening up stuff and dealing with circuit boards etc. Was thinking of some kind of zwave relay wired in parallel to each switch along with something like a tilt sensor? An end case functionality like a dimmer switch would be ideal. “Off” would correspond to to the normally upright position. Full ‘On’ would correspond to the full recline position. The dimming function would be similar to the current toggle switch function. The ‘memory’ of a preset brightness in the dimmer switches would be a nice to have as well - recline the seat to a favorite position. And the % dimming corresponds to the % recline of the seat.

Suggestions? What switches / controllers / sensors should I be looking at? Is there one device that will do this?



Now as much “unnecessary” stuff that I have automated and my lazy factor through the roof, I must say that my wife would not go for this at all. :roll_eyes:

Reminds me of the movie Wall-E!

Saying all of that, both of my cars have this exact feature so why not for the HT chairs? :grimacing:

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I am over here with my stomach hurting from laughing so hard!! :rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl:

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@anon36505037, the gifs are hilarious! I’m in the US in California. Device recommendations would help a lot - I’m trying to figure out how much of this can be ‘ready made’. I’m quite comfortable hacking into hardware but I have not coded for a while. Maybe a good excuse to get back into it :).

On the safety side - I would like to replicate the exact function of the original toggles -ie the seat keeps moving as long as I have have a remote button pressed. I realize that there may be issues in delays and intermittent loss of control which I’ll need to account for. Maybe putting in some sort of pressure sensor into the seat cushion so that the system is ‘aware’ if anyone is on it. So local control works irrespective but remote could be set to account for a person on the seat.

@rontalley - its not about whether its needed. Its about why not! :grin: Actually I just want to see if I can do it - just for kicks. Help me understand the smart things platform a little better!

I found a nice little device:
Seems like I could use it to build a custom zwave device for the couch. Use the 4 analog inputs to read the position of the seat and headrest via a potentiometer and use the analog outputs to drive relays. It only seems to have 5 PWM outputs - 8 would have been ideal for controlling the 4 motors in each couch. Need to explore it a bit more.

I thought about this as well, but I got distracted by adding heating to my two reclining seats in the couch. I’m able to power each seat with an older Microsoft Surface Tablet power supply. (I had the power supplies sitting around being useless because the wiring at the tip shorted out.)

I was thinking about using an ESP8266 and some relays to automate it all, but I’m not sure there are enough use cases that make the effort worth it. I do like the idea that you might could use a slider control to set the position(s), or have the ability to remember a favorite position. But I also have concerns about an increase risk of animal/child injury because you have the motor control out of human hands in at least one of those scenarios. You’d probably want to engineer some safety features to prevent the motors from running when children/animals decide to camp out under the recliner, if you possess either. I also think you’d want any communication between sensors and relays to occur locally and not in the ST cloud.

Did you ever get this to work?

I have been searching for a ‘smart’ recliner control handset to replace mine.

It ‘should exist’ but this post is the nearest I have found.

Given there are just two buttons / actions for the chair to do it shouldn’t be too complicated?? I.e…

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I’d just like to automate the single button press and hold to put all recliners down. We’re you ever able to get this to work?

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Im trying to build the same thing. Im using a sonoff dual, modded so the output contact are dry (no voltage) and they basically just close the circuit. Also in the ewelink app that controll the sonoff there is a inch setting, that lets the switch on for a certain amount of time. I calculate its 10sec to completely distend the couch. With an Alexa routine my plan is to say Alexa movie time, and lights go off and couch reclines back. After all the hardware mod, I get to the switch on the couch but the switch are always on and clicking on the switch I think that interrupts the circuits and the couch opens, so I can’t figure it out how I could use the modded sonoff now :thinking:

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I actually figured out how to do this if anyone is still interested! Maybe we can get this thread going again. I can link a video to YouTube if there’s interest

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Yes, I am very interested to see how you have done it.

Take a look at this video I took last night. I wired it in a way that I have external access through my raspberry pi. The switch on the chair itself still works as well. Now that I have control of the channel I’m currently working on integrating it with physical buttons (preset seating positions with one press), Alexa integration, web interface integration, etc. I’ll also program if so that when a movie starts let’s go up and movie ends and legs go down. Sometimes when I have people over they leave the legs up. I’ll be able to lower all legs with one button push. I’m happy to create a tutorial if there’s interest!

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Let me know if you’re still interested!

Let’s get this thread talking again! Got it working with Alexa and SmartThings ! This could be a fun thread if people are still interested
Alexa smart recliner

I approve…i stumbled here after a lot of google searches. I would like to get done on my two front recliners in my home theater. Unfortunately I built my screen two low and only able to view fully if the two fronts are all the way open. Mr. Jordan, i use mostly Insteon stuff and are able to control via google home. Please post a tutorial… thanks in advance. I’m quarantined home…ideal time for some projects

I’d love to get this working myself… the kids leaving these things up each night is a real PITA… I was envisioning using something like this:

or this:

not sure if we need 2 or 4 contacts for a pair of recliners in the same sofa…

did you develop a device handler for this?

I just broke my right arm, and can only sleep in my recliner. And guess what the controls are on the right hand side of the chair. So I am in trouble. I can’t really reach across with the left hand very well it’s becoming a big problem. I’d love to be able to automate this but I’m not really very technical. I could probably do something if I had good guidance. I’m willing to buy a raspberry pi and try to program it. Would there also be a way to control with a phone? I have Alexa and Google assistant as well.

Hello, I like your idea and I also want to do it with my chair, I am using Wemos D1 mini, to communicate with Raspberry Pi in Domoticz. I also have a Sonoff Basic to cut the power of the entire system. I have verified that the four cables that reach the remote control, two are an NC and the other two are a NO. Do you have it too? Is there power in those contacts or not? Thank you. a greetingmisillon2|666x500 misillon3

@Eric_Jordan did you ever make a guide for this? Really interested in doing the same

If it is of interest, the below has been developed using the latest Espressis ESP32-S2. See

Add Comfort to your Home Automation, with this new STEM inspired Smart Home Device.

The new DitroniX WREN 1 has just been launched. Designed primarily for Electric Recliners and having two separate DC outputs (12v-30v 2.8A), it could also safely be used to control a range of other Low Voltage DC Linear Motor controlled IoT applications.

Hope it helps! Interested in any feedback.


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