Automation and the few times I don't want it

So I’m having some guest stay in our home and I’ve explained very well about my system and how I’d like them NOT to turn off lights,lol there still adjusting to that. My question is this. My morning routine is triggered by my living room motion. I noticed last night one friend was sleeping on the couch and every time he moved the lights would turn on. Respectively he said nothing in till the early morning when I saw the lights on, I went out to see him squinting while trying to sleep. I then made some know the spot trigger adjustments so to activate my routine I chose a particular switch. But if someone without me knowing or wanting to ask how could I tell a guest that if they don’t want the lights to turn on then do “this” this is a new case scenario for me but I’d like to accommodate my guest without having to go to jarvis on them. More simple more better

All my automation rules are tied to three modes: Home, Away and Night. I have another mode called: “Dumb House”.
So, my morning routine triggers only if the mode is “Night”. Living lights turn on with motion only if mode is “Home” etc.

When I set the mode to “Dumb House”, nothing works except for few basics like, bathroom lights and security announcements (window break-in, someone at front door).

I/wife manually set to dumb mode (virtual switch) when we have guests. I do not want anyone else messing with that.


I had this same problem this week with a contractor remodeling a bathroom in my home. He was cutting tile outside and the door was always locking on him when he tried to come back in. Similarly I had a house sitter there a couple days and when I left everything shut off on her and the alarm system was armed. Wasn’t long before she set off the alarm and couldn’t get lights/tv back on.

I implemented some virtual switches called “Disable ___” to prevent things from coming on such as the alarm system, or my away routine from firing. You could certainly tie it to Modes too.

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I used to have this problem too… but then EchoSistant was created.

I created a virtual switch for each of my automations. I have that switch set as a “Restriction” in the automation. If that switch is on, then the automation is false and will not work.

I can stop the automation by turning on the switch in app.
I can stop the automation by saying, Alexa turn on xxxx switch

I can say, "Alexa, disable the automations in the Living Room.
and when I"m ready…
Alexa, enable the automations in the Living Room.


Nice thanks guys I knew I wasn’t alone. I’m working on a wall mounted tab controller. So I think I’ll make a dumb house mode that a guest can simply press and I’ll deal with it when I get home lol. Plus make a virtual switch that I or anyone can activate verbally or app. Last night is when I noticed it when the lights were on so I if I could of just ask alexa from my bedroom to turn off modes and automations that would of been perfect. Me alexa tell jarvis shutdown, alexa tell jarvis “go stupid” lol. My result should be the house running shutdown routine then house changing modes to no light automation but just window and simple security features. Cool you guys got my gears going. I think I got my puzzle.

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So I created a guest mode in ide but it does not show inside the app. I was able to create a routine called guest that I configured in a hack kind of way. But I really need a convenient way to switch from guest mode to armed with a push of a button.

If you are talking about the “Armed(Away), Armed (home), Disarmed” modes in the Smart Home Monitor, I do not use them. I built all my automation rules including break-in notifications and alarms using smart apps and CORE.

When i add a “Dumb” mode (in your case “Guest”) in IDE, it shows up in the list of modes along with the default three “Home, Night, Away” in the drop down list to select while setting up the routines/automatons…

What I did was time taking but worth all the effort. Here are the steps:

  1. Make sure every automation is mode restricted. The modes here are “Home, Night, Away”, not the security modes.
    Ex: I have a automation rule in CORE named “Good Night” which turns off all lights, TV, A/V etc., and sets the mode to “Night” ONLY if my current mode is “Home”. This will not trigger if my current mode is Away/Guest.
    In other words, I am using “Mode” to indicate the current status of my house and rules/routines to perform tasks based on the current status.

  2. Create a routine to select “Guest/Dumb” mode and do nothing else. Name of Routine: “Guest Mode”

  3. Create a virtual switch to trigger the “Guest Mode” routine. Name of Switch: “Guest Mode Switch”

Note: Do steps 2 and 3 for all the modes (Home/Away/Night)

  1. Refresh devices in Echo/Google Home if you have one
  2. Trigger the guest mode by shouting at your echo/home - “Turn on Guest Mode Switch” OR go into the SmartThings app and trigger “Guest Mode” routine manually.
  3. Go back to automation by shouting at your echo/home - " Turn on Home/Night/Away Mode Switch" OR go into the SmartThings app and trigger “Home/Away/Night Mode” routine manually.
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I think just understand what your saying. I do at the moment use ST armed and armed away modes but I’m sure I could take the time to eliminate and reconfigure my security set up. So basically take away the ST security, set up my automation rules with mode restrictions ie. Home night away quest. And have quest set up as nothing but an empty routine? Then when I want to go back to my automations I would select any other mode which would then do what it’s intended to. Does this sound correct. If so I don’t use coRe yet. Just do use ask alexa quite a bit and really havnt looked at any other security smart apps. Window alarms at night and stuff. Any suggestions

Your understanding is correct.

Before you go ahead and re-work on your set up, make sure you cannot work with the current ST armed modes. I never used them, so I would not know. I will try to tinker a bit this weekend to see if we can use the ST modes.

You need not use CORE for automation, I believe most of the smart apps support restrictions i.e. trigger only during…I don’t use specific security smart apps. All my announcements are through Sonos (speaker notify) and smartthings push notification.

For me, CORE does everything and anything I need, so never looked beyond that. Others can probably pitch in on other smart apps if you tell the specific use case.

so I’ll at some point get into core. for now I think I’ll start looking at removing the ST security since alexa doesn’t like it either. I have an idea but what I’m going to need is some security and monitory features. ie if in night or away mode and window opens turn on red lights or flashing, that’s what I have now. my home mode activates with living room motion and deacrivates armed. and will not activate my lights routine while in home mode so the wife can turn lights off and stay off if she wants. night time routine sets it back to night mode plus home/armed which gives me my flashing lights and stuff. shutdown turns everything off after no motion for 40 minutes then goes to armed away. my phone and wife’s phone deactivate security when we arrive. I pretty sure I can set up all my lighting and shutdown and sleep walker automations but I need to find a good way to set up my security besides ST security modes. I have home away night guest as my modes now plus a few virtual switches not being used.