Devices that don't require a Neutral wire

The monoprice switches don’t require a neutral wire. I was looking at them earlier today when I saw they are on sale again. Wondering if the 2 switch would work for a light/fan combo .

Monoprice has two certified zwave plug-in modules, but I’m not aware that they make any wall switches that are Z wave. Do you have a link?

The in wall switches are about 1/2 way down the page

Ok, just a terminology thing, those are “modules” not “switches.” Although the device type is still a switch.

Anyway, both those models (11989 and 11990) do require a neutral – – look at the wiring diagrams. The diagram has a white wire that runs to the switch and is the neutral.

Without the neutral, the switch is not powered enough to hear the next “on” command from the network.


Must be another loss in terminology. To me a neutral wire is the 3rd wire. All wiring has a black and white wire.
Most HA switches require the 3rd wire not always there in older buildings. Like my house built in 1892 . When I put in Leviton and Wemo switches I had to run all new wiring. From the main panel to switches and lights. To add the neutral ground wire.

In the US, wiring colors are not mandated so there is some variation. But yes typically there is a wire for the line (power coming to the switch), the load (Power going from the switch to the light fixture) and the ground. Then somewhere on the circuit is the neutral wire (typically white).

You will see the neutral at most plugs, and often at the light fixture. Nonnetworked mechanical switches did not require a neutral so it wasn’t always run to the switchbox, although sometimes you found it in a bundle of wires at the back of the switchbox, just not connected to the switch itself.

Lutron light switches do not require the neutral, they are engineered differently using a proprietary patented method. But most other networked switches like the Wemo and the Leviton you mentioned now do require a neutral, although some of the older ones did not.

The original poster in this topic is specifically looking for devices that do not require a neutral. This can save some money in older houses where there is no neutral in the switchbox. Although it often limits the choice of lightbulbs you can use.

The two Monoprice in wall modules that you mentioned do require a neutral. (don’t just look at the picture of the device as it comes out of the box, look at the wiring diagram.) They’re useful devices, they just don’t meet the criteria for this particular thread.

Have I asked you this already… How does Lutron do it?

It can’t be trickle current, right?, as that is no longer reliable with CFL and LED.

Asked and answered. They have their own patented switch design. :alien:

Thanks… I guess I still don’t understand how the switch can pull standby current without at least partially completing the circuit, and I thought lots of “old” smart switches (including X10) did that via trickle current, not rocket science. Is that the patent?

This works fine, of course, with a physical incandescent filament that closes the circuit to the Neutral in the light socket. But isn’t reliable in CFL or LED as stated many times due to insufficient dark load.


Since there’s already a topic specific to Lutron, why don’t we take this conversation there.

1 Like

Yoswit has a switch supports both with or without neutral wire ==>

Very strange campaign. No mention of all at all of Lutron devices which do not require a neutral wire and are one of the top names in home automation for lighting. So this project is hardly the only device of this type.

Second, of course, it’s a kickstarter campaign it doesn’t even have a projected delivery before March, and it’s unlikely that it will make that as most kickstarter campaigns don’t.

Mostly, though, why no mention of Lutron?

This topic popped up for me again today, and since it was originally started, Fibaro dimmer is now available in the US as well as the EU. It’s an in wall micro and does not require a neutral wire if it is just for dimming a light source below 8 A. It can be used with a regular switch for on/off or a momentary/retractive switch for dimming as well. It’s become very popular with UK members because so many of the homes there don’t have neutral wires at the light switch. There are a number of different models, but the relays (just called “switch”) do require a neutral, while the dimmer modules do not.

In the UK, Vesternet sells the full line:

In the US, the 212 dimmer model is available from a number of different retailers:

The device is somewhat different in the two regions, including having a different zwave frequency, so make sure you buy the one that is compatible with your hub. It’s also fairly expensive compared to many switches.

Also there are a lot of differences between different models, including different required wiring patterns, so make sure you know which model you are looking at. (And I’m not sure if the Fibaro 211 was ever manufactured on the US frequency. But the 212 is available on either.)

The following discussion thread goes into some of the wiring issues.

So this isn’t just a matter of swapping out a switch, but it’s definitely worth knowing about.

For Lutron, can you highlight which model of Smart Switch is available? For this campaign, it’s the ONLY smart wall switch supports both with or without neutral wire. Which means, for the same device, you can use either with neutral wire wiring or without neutral wire wiring.

Second, for the delivery schedule, as it’s already v2, some models are available available and can be delivered before that. Let’s see if we can be a good example in Kickstarter to meet the promised timeline.

Third, please refer to Yoswit, Bluegic, PlusBLE, Mob-Mob are the brands under Lincogn Technology Co. Limited.

Please cite your Lutron model so that I can do some comparison for you.

Glad to hear about the Bluetooth certification, thanks for the information.

Regarding Lutron, they hold a number of patents on light switches. Their regular Caseta line do not require a neutral, and can be installed in a box with a neutral simply by not using the neutral.

As for a device which can either use a neutral or not use a neutral, the Fibaro dimmer 212 is available in both the US and the UK and can be installed either with a neutral or without a neutral. It is a certified Z wave plus device. The previous model, 211, also can be used with or without a neutral and has been on the market for at least a year.

Remotely controlled light dimming module is designed to work with various types of light sources. It may be connected to two-wire or three-wire configuration so it can operate with or without neutral lead.

Thank you for your information. Are these Smart Wall switch which can be controlled through mobile phone?

Yes, but they do use a bridge.

Because your devices are using Bluetooth and connecting directly to the phone, you have a point to make there.

(Although as soon as you introduce the ability to control the switches when you are away from the building, your devices also added some kind of bridge as well, even if it’s just a tablet.)

Your kickstarter page refers only to the Lutron Maestro. The newer Lutron Caseta line fills a number of the chart boxes that the maestro does not.

But I think we are getting a little far away from the topic of this thread, which is meant to be about practical solutions that people could install today for use with their SmartThings system. :sunglasses:

It might be better to start your own topic under devices:

Finally, the question I meant to ask earlier, how would your switch integrate with SmartThings? As a Z wave device, the Fibaro 212 dimmer works directly with SmartThings, and quite a few community members are using it now.

Sure. For Yoswit, the team is studying the available API by SmartThings and of course, we are targeting to work with SmartThings in 2017 and therefore we are here.

Btw, I cannot get any information from SmartThings product list to show Lutron Caseta Line or Fibaro product. Can you share me the link? Otherwise, when we do the research, we just wonder Lutron Caseta and Fibaro are not smart switch because there is no information in the website or catalog showing they are the smart switch which is compatible with SmartThings.

1 Like

Jasco just released a no neutral dimmer:

1 Like

Nice! :sunglasses: note that unlike their previous models, this one also works with a lot of dimmable LED ‘s. Looks like they picked up a couple of new patents as well.

And… This is a series 700 device. Among other things, the radio is smaller, so it should fit better in older switch boxes.