Do I need a Zigbee repeater for all my Smartthings sensors?


(Mike) #1

Last week I ordered some more motion and mutlipurpose sensors. I put my motion sensor on the porch I could have the lights auto turn on in the middle of the night if someone can to the door. It connected fine in the house. But once I started testing it, I realized it wasn’t connected. In IDE I was able to determine that it disconnected almost immediately after I mounted it outside.

My house is 3600sqft, blown insulation, vinyl siding., roughly 50’ x 60’. Originally the hub was located in the opposite corner of the house. So i moved it to central closet where the internet is and the Wifi. Then I reconnect the motion sensor. It worked for about 20 minutes and stopped again. At that point the backdoor and front door multi sensor started showing disconnected. Both of these sensor are no more than 40’ from the hub at this point.

I have Zwave switches at the front door and switches near the backdoor that work fine. I feel like I need a wired Zigbee switch or power outlet on both ends of my house to repeat the signal for the motion and multi sensors.

I’m getting ready to install the other mutlisensors on my washer and dryer upstairs and im worried they wont connect…

If you need it I can post the plans to the house.

Thank you for you replies.


(John) #2

More devices equals stronger mesh.

Smart Power Outlet is an AC powered Zigbee device that also functions as a Zigbee repeater (there is an Iris Smart Outlet that functions as both Zigbee and Zwave).

EDIT: 40 feet - walls, etc. reduce signal strength and so can WiFi (if it’s too close or an interferring channel).


(Keith) #3

If it was me, I’d buy one plug in zigbee device and plug it in close to one of the outside setups and test it. If that side starts working, you know you need to create a better mesh. I think ST not having a mesh map function is a big drawback to HA. Not know why your devices are not working for something as simple as range causes new HA customers a lot of frustration. It also adds a hidden cost to projects that irritating.


(Mike) #4

I agree with both of you. I think buying one unit and testing is a good idea. There’s a Lowes close to the house, so I’ll go out there today.

Originally I had the Hub in my stereo cabinet and everything was fine before the new sensors. I would like to move it back. My wife would sure like me to move onto another project lol

I also ordered a Schlage Powered Deadbolt for the front door. Im a little timid to hook that up lol


Xiaomi Zigbee Outlet (Steps to Pair any Xiaomi Zigbee device!)
(Robin) #5

Every time you move Zigbee devices around you should carry out a mesh repair.

Unlike Zwave (which ST has built in repair options for) you need to force a Zigbee repair manually.

Unplug the hub and remove the batteries, then wait at least 15 minutes. Zigbee devices will go into ‘panic mode’. When you reconnect the hub, the Zigbee devices will re-build their neighbour tables and hopefully perform better.

It can take a day or so for everything to settle down so don’t expect immediate results.

You are however on the range limits, so you may still require some repeaters, but worth a shot first.


(Mike) #6

I was thinking the same thing too, but the 2 door sensors don’t move :wink: i was reading other post about uising Hue ZHA bulbs as repeaters, but I don’t really want to spend that kind of money.


(Mike) #7

So you see this right here, this is what has me so irritated about this whole Zigbee thing…


(Realy Living Dream) #8

The 13 minutes isn’t an issue. The 2 days is definitely a sign that they gave dropped off. Have you tried to just pull/replace the batteries so they try to force a reconnect to hub ?

Personally I have a minimum of 1 powered ZigBee & ZW device every 20 feet just for a strong mesh and to avoid traffic jams with everything going through 1 device.


(Justn ) #9

Careful with lights as repeaters. I picked up 2 Cree connected bulbs to extend my mesh back to two rooms for some ZigBee sensors and then found out they only repeat the ZLL protocol of ZigBee. Can’t speak to the Hue bulbs though. I found a smart plug like the one from Lowe’s for $20 on an Amazon deal and all is good now.


(Ray) #10

They do have a zigbee mesh map. Unfortunately they don’t release for us and only way to get anything out of this is when you have mesh issue and contact support.


(Mike) #11

I expect the 13 minutes, but those 2 days devices are pissing me off. The Motion sensor, basically stop within minutes of me repairing it, remounting it and testing the motion by walk around from the backyard.


(Mike) #12

Ok this plug is getting the better of me. I guess my ST app is finding it, but it comes up as Z-Wave Device. However when I hit on/off the outlet does nothing. It is the 3210-L model. So frustrated.


(Mike) #13

Ok now I have it. Once I found it as Z-Wave Device, I deleted it through IDE. Then started the Device Add on the phone again. This time it came up as “Thing” with the ST logo next to it. Then I went into IDE and change it to SmartPower Outlet. And now it works. Now to figure out if the repeater park works. Going to pull the power on all my ST sensors near the front of the house.


(Mike) #14

I reset all the ST Sensors by pulling the batteries. All devices are back online and reporting data. Going to trying moving the hub back to the stereo Cabinet and see what happens.

Didn’t know the Motion Sensor did temperature until I was in IDE the other day for the first time. That’s pretty cool.


(Mike) #15

Ok after the move all Devices have checked in. Looks promising. Although my Automation of turning on the Iris Power Outlet from 11AM to 8PM did not kick it on. hmm


(Mike) #16

Still rambling… I can’t believe how much time I’ve wasted on this today. OMG


(Realy Living Dream) #17

Follow the directions in he thread on the Iris plug. It will/ needs to be paired twice. Once as a Z-wave thing/device and again ( or before) as the ZigBee outlet.

Changing the Z-wave repeater to a ZigBee outlet will not actually do anything except disable the Z-wave radio and make in non-functional.

If I recall to include the ZigBee you hold in the button while plugging it in and then release it as soon as th light blinks , all this while ST is searching for devices. To include zwave while it is plugged in you press the button 5x fast & the light should start blinking.
These are 2 devices inside once case and need to be treated as such.


(Mike) #18

Thanks for the reply. It’s been working fine since my last post.