Best practices for Zigbee bulb on a Zwave circuit and Echo dim control

I have a switched outlet in my living room that is connected to a LG Zigbee light bulb. This bulb works great.

I recently changed the switch from a standard switch to a zwave switch. I set this up on a timer, so my lamp always turns on around the time I wake up and shower for work. From an automation standpoint it works great.

Now, I would love to simplify voice controls using my echo. The bulb is named Living Room Lamp Light, and the lamp itself is Living Room Lamp. I can say turn on the living room lamp, and set living room lamp light to 25%, and both act as expected. I love to simplify this though. I would prefer to set the living room lamp to 25%, and not only have the zwave switch kick on, but also have the bulb itself dim. Since its a switched outlet, I cannot put in a dimmer switch. I’ve also tried to use the zwave switch as a trigger with Smart Lighting, setting the bulb to 50% when the switch gets powered on. Unfortunately, the switch will turn on, but the bulb never gets dimmed.

Whats the best way to handle a Zwave switch with a zigbee bulb when using an Echo? I’d like to make it simple for my family to use, as its one of the main lights that we use.


There are probably a lot of ways to do this.

My first thought would be to isolate the echo/bulb control from the Z wave switch. I don’t think echo needs to control that switch at all. That’s just something you have for the convenience of people in the room.

I don’t know if the SmartThings official immigration allows dimming of this brand of bulb through echo, but if not you could just set up a virtual dimmer and have the real bulb follow that one, authorize the virtual dimmer to echo and now you have dim control over the bulb via voice. That seems pretty straightforward.

If you do want to have echo control of the wall switch itself, just treated as a separate device. So you can dim with the virtual dimmer switch and turn off altogether with the wall switch if you choose.

Or am I not understanding the use case?

p.s. My understanding is that set level is broken, at least some features of it, in smart lighting right now, so you may be running into that as well. Have you put in a support ticket?

The bulb works great, no issues with the dimming control. I actually like it best when compared to my Hue or GE Link bulbs.

The issue with isolating the switch is that it gets used quite a bit. Telling Alexa to turn on the bulb will not work if the power to the circuit has been cut at the switch. If the bulb and the switch are powered off through ST, then powering on the switch will power them both on. The issue though is the bulb is very bright at that level. We tend to use it at 25-50% most of the time. There are times though where we do need 100%. The outlet is a switched outlet, so I can’t replace it with a dimmer, nor do I want to eliminate the switch at the wall plate.

I see. That does get tricky.

I haven’t ever worked with a set up like that because I wouldn’t want current to the bulb going on and off, it’s going to really confuse your zigbee mesh. I just leave my Zigbee bulbs powered on and use an alternate switch that doesn’t cut power as the means of control for those who want a switch on the wall.

Hopefully someone else will have some ideas. :sunglasses:

Are you sure about this? I have lamps connected to switched outlets in both my family room and master bedroom that are on zwave dimmer switches and they both work great. Personally if the switch gets used that much, I’d go with a dimmer switch and use the bulb elsewhere.

You could use a custom device type for that zwave switch and add in the level commands where they just sendEvents, then use a SmartApp to watch for level changes to the switch and have the SmartApp dim the bulb. Then the Echo would just act on the switch and the SmartApp would do the rest.

I’m not a pro, but it seems to me that dimming 120V in the wall would not be up to code. What would happen if you plugged in a TV/Radio/etc? A bulb will be ok, but other devices may experience issues.

Scott, are you using smart bulbs or dumb bulbs with the dimmer switch?

That is a great point and one I didn’t think of. I plan to take my HA with me, so the dimmer will only be used with lamps and the outlets are both behind heavy furniture, so no real risk of someone inadvertently using them with other devices.

Dumb bulbs. Never a dimmer with smart bulbs for me. I do have a zwave switch attached to smart bulbs in my basement because I needed the waf of the switch, but individual bulb control for dimming room sections.

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My house was built in the 1950s and has a couple of dimmer wall switches that control outlets. One half of the receptacle. I don’t know if that would be to code now, but it’s just kind of a thing that you know because that is the ceiling fixture in the room. So if you unplug it the room is dark.

People do get networked dimmer modules that you can plug into a receptacle (pocket sockets) – – Most of them don’t have a ground plug hole, which is how they discourage plugging in anything except a lamp.