Best outlet for "Alexa turn on + auto off after 2 minutes"

alexa
echo

(Hernan) #1

Hi,

Looking for recommendations here on my first smart outlet for specific use case.

Use case:

  1. I want to connect a water circulating pump to a smart switch (now, I use a RF enabled switch to turn on/off remotely)
  2. I want to trigger it (on) using alexa, as well as via an app (can be dedicated or SmartThings)
  3. I want the switch to turn the pump off automatically after X minutes (2 specifically)
  4. As a bonus, would be nice to also be able to have a second light/switch turn on/off when the outlet is on (maybe hue light one day to turn to specific color)

I was thinking WeMo only because they have a recipe for auto-timer-turn-off so I know I can do it with them. But am I missing out on leveraging Smartthings if I do that?

I have :

  • SmartThings
  • Eco (just today!)
  • 1 motion, Siren and 2 Leviton z-wave switches

As an FYI, I know and did the following

  • Connected all the above to SmartThings and used SmartThings App and Alexa to turn on / off lights.
  • Know how to trigger using SmartThings app lights based on motion
  • Used the home smart home monitor to auto turn on lights and alert me etc’

#2

There are several ways to do this, but one of the easiest is to set up a virtual timer for the outlet. That way you just tell echo to turn on the virtual timer, and when the virtual timer goes off the outlet goes off. But the physical outlet is still available to be controlled in other ways as you like. And you can use any brand of outlet that you like as long as it is controllable by SmartThings.

There’s a how to article in the community – created wiki on how to set up a virtual timer which will show you how to do this. Even though it’s written about a light, it works exactly the same way for an outlet. :sunglasses:

http://thingsthataresmart.wiki/index.php?title=How_to_create_a_virtual_timer_for_a_light

Again, there are lots of other ways to do this, including with webcore, EchoSistant, etc but the virtual timer is usually the easiest to set up if you aren’t already using the other methods. :sunglasses:


(Jason "The Enabler" as deemed so by @Smart) #3

You can also use the stock smart app, smart lighting, you would just set it up like the picture below.


#4

The issue with using the official smart lighting power light feature for the physical device, as discussed in the how to article in the wiki, is that then that two minute allowance will always apply no matter how you turn the device on. So even if you want to run it for longer, you won’t be able to.

If you use a virtual timer instead then the power allowance will only apply to the virtual timer and you can still use any other method for turning the device on it and having it stay on until you turn it off again. So it’s just a little more flexible approach. :sunglasses:


(Jason "The Enabler" as deemed so by @Smart) #5

You are absolutely correct about that. I have always believed that smart lighting is a great way for new folks to learn abbot the system. It gets them started as they figure out and learn how to get things done.


#6

Yep. :sunglasses:

The virtual timer method still uses the official SmartLighting feature. It just uses it by adding an additional virtual device to act as the timer and then applying the SmartLighting rule to that. :timer_clock::bulb:


(Hernan) #7

thanks guys.

@bamarayne, will it work with a outlet like WeMo Insight or the TP Link?

should I go with z-wave or it doesn’t really matter?


(Jason "The Enabler" as deemed so by @Smart) #8

it should work just fine with anything you can connect to ST. Personally, for something like that, I would get a GE zwave outlet that will run local along with the smart lighting app. Then you don’t have to worry about internet outages or anything.