SmartThings Community

Devices 'falling off' the network

(Jay S) #1

I have several door sensors in my garage (SmartThings Multi for the garage doors, and a SmartThings Open/Closed sensor for the back door) that keep ‘falling off the network’.

What I mean by this is that after a few days (or weeks), I will notice that SmartThings no longer knows the status of the door. It doesn’t update when I open or close it. When I look at it under the app’s “Things” section, all looks well, but the ‘activity’ button has nothing listed. When I look at it at ‘My Devices’ from the SmartThings website, I will see that it was last updated 2 months ago! It has clearly disconnected from the hub and never told me.

This is a pain in the butt because the only way to get it back is to uninstall the device entirely (which means going through all my apps and removing it first), then re-adding the device and re-adding to all my apps.

Is there any way the app can notify me if a device has had no activity for longer than say, 7 days? 30 days? Additionally, it’d be great if there was a way for me to “re-connect” a device so I don’t have to do that drop->re-add dance every so often.


( co-founder Terry @ActionTiles; GitHub: @cosmicpuppy) #2

This issue came up about a month ago from another member.

A SmartApp can read the Event log for you its selected Devices back as far as 7 days.

Some passive sensors (and I presume actuators too, actually) will never send an Event if no activity happens… So they will appear on the same search for dead or disconnected Things.



A more typical maintenance approach for mesh networks like SmartThings is to run a network heal periodically and flag any node changes in the network from the last time (new or vanished devices).

In an office building, that’s typically done every night, or maybe every week, as part of regular maintenance.

The problem in a residential install is that requires shutting everything else down while the heal runs, and most homeowners don’t want their alarms or even their lights shut down for an hour or so every day. So homeowners tend to let things run until they break, then figure out what’s wrong.

Some people do a monthly heal as preventive maintenance on a large home system, which seems like a pretty good compromise.

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(Dav Glass) #4

I run the Network Repair every week and I run it after I add devices. It greatly improves the speed and performance of the network.

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And for clarity, I should add that a “network heal” and a “network repair” are the same thing in this context. More details:

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(John S) #6

Totally endorse the zwave repair tool. If you’re using zwave devices, and installing a lot of them, then it’s almost guaranteed that your mesh ends up a hot mess that can be greatly improved by a heal. Once you’ve got everything installed that last repair is crucial.

For the OP - whatever these devices are, they sound like they are physically distant from your hub - you might want a repeater in there somewhere to help bridge the distance.

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(Jay S) #7

I will try the ZWave repair tool to see if that helps the matter.

@schettj - That’s one piece of the puzzle I omitted. :slight_smile: Yes, my garage sensors are a bit physically distant, but they’re already behind a repeater. The thing that confuses me (and the reason I didn’t mention that) is because some of the devices behind the repeater are behaving well, while some are not!


(John S) #8

Did you add the repeater after the misbehaving devices were associated? If so, they still aren’t routing through it. Do the repair (three times, apparently :smile:) if so and they should be much happier.


(Paul) #9

The devices you’re having problems with are zigbee devices, not z-wave… right? I thought the z-wave repair tool only helps z-wave devices.



The repair tool is specifically for Z wave, but the link I included covers both Zwave and Zigbee. Doing a zigbee heal is very easy, you just have to unplug the hub for at least 15 minutes and when it comes back on the routing tables will be rebuilt by themselves.

And the issue of needing to do a network heal after adding a new device, including repeater also applies to both zigbee and zwave. The new repeater will not be used until the address tables are rebuilt.


(DanG) #11

If you own the appliance switches that came with the original SmartThings they may be causing your problem. I had the same issue as you described and support replaced four of the appliance switches with their newer version which solved devices dropping off the network.


(Sean) #12

I have about 15 fairly evenly spaced Zwave devices throughout my house, I periodically run repairs and I still have devices mysteriously dropping off the network. I also have the original GE appliance plugin outlet/switch. @an39511 are you saying the appliance module was causing the other Zwave devices to fall off the network, or the appliance module itself was dropping off?


(DanG) #13

The appliance modules were causing multi sensors and motion modules to drop off the network. Support claimed the first generation appliance modules were the cause. They exchanged the older ones with the smaller square modules and it cured the problem.



The original smart power plugs that were marketed under the ST brand were zigbee devices that were intended as repeaters, but caused some interference with other nearby zigbee devices, including the presence sensor. They didn’t interfere with any zwave devices.


(Patrick Stuart [@pstuart]) #15

Wow, really? First I heard of them causing interference. Are gen 2/3 free of this defect? Or was this fixed? I have a lot of them around the house and having no issues with zigbee.

I was under the impression they are repeaters and help extend the zigbee network, but since I can’t map my ST zigbee mesh (my c4 mesh, I can) I can’t confirm…

Wonder how one can tell the diff between gen 1 and gen 2?

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This is one of the things support went over with me when we were trying to fix the presence detector teleporting issues.

They’re really easy to tell apart. The first generation looks like a European plug: it’s big and rounded at the top.

The second ones are smaller and square.

And the third generation will be smaller yet.

All 3 are zigbee repeaters.


(Patrick Stuart [@pstuart]) #17

Awesome, thanks. Mine must be all 2nd gen then. Explains the lack of problems :smile:


( co-founder Terry @ActionTiles; GitHub: @cosmicpuppy) #18

Dang… I have the first kind (just one).

It has been a little flaky, but not enough to contact support.

I wish they had issued a recall.



I don’t know whether it was all of that model, or just a high enough percentage ( even 7% would probably do it) to justify the eventual switch.


(Joel) #20

do you guys see these same issues with the original motion sensor repeaters? or is it just with the power device above? i hope not as I just ordered lots of originals as my zigbee lock is only working 80% of the time… (it’s about 20 feet from the hub). Also had some other issues but have moved my wifi routers around and spread them out as much as I can and it seemed to fix the issue - except for my zigbee lock.

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