Does ST has bridge features?

hubv2

(liongmei) #1

Does ST has bridge features like wifi router? I use two wifi router connected by bridge, otherwise there will be at least two rooms without wifi coverage.


#2

Hi, Why do you need it to be a bridge?


(liongmei) #3

No, I am not planning to make it into bridge. I think I will need two hub to cover my entire house. Sorry for the confusion


#4

It won’t work, because you can’t link two hub together, but, depending on why you think you need to hub, some zwave and zigbee devices can extend the range actually.

Search around the forum to understand more


(liongmei) #5

I plan to replace all of my lighting ans sensors devices with the smart one. So I think I need the hub to be able to reach my entire house just like my wifi router.


#6

SmartThings supports both zigbee and zwave. These are “mesh” protocols where many devices can pass along a message for another device. This helps extend the range significantly. :sunglasses:

So you put the hub in the center of the house and then the messages get passed around by the other devices.

The following thread (this is a clickable link) explains further:


(liongmei) #7

Ew! my house wall are 100% brick, to make it worse, my house has an U layout. If I am going to use the multiple zone method, do you have any recommendation how to connect one zone to another?


(Neal (www.zebrablinds.com / www.zebrablinds.ca)) #8

Easiest and best way are ZigBee or Z-Wave outlets/plugs. They have a built-in range extender. My house is about 4500sqft in total, and I use the outlets to extend my range.


#9

In the multiple zone method described in the thread I linked to, you are using one hub per zone. In that case, there really isn’t a good way to link them all together. The simplest way is just to give each hub its own schedules and rules. That will work for some households, and not for others.

There are some individual things you can do where you have a device in one zone do something which is detectable by device in the next zone. With lighting, for example, you can use sensors which detect light levels so that when a light goes on at the bottom of the stairs in zone one, a lux detector at the top of the stairs in zone two recognizes that it has come on.

It’s not the most elegant solution, but it can allow some automatic communication between zones.

Do you have strong Wi-Fi throughout the house? If so, you can use WeMo switches, which use Wi-Fi instead of zwave or or zigbee. If the WeMos work for you, you can just use those throughout the house, or if you still go with a multi zone set up, you can have a WeMo turn on something that can be detected by a device in the zone. This could be a light and a light sensor, but it could also be something that moves and triggers a contact sensor or a vibration sensor. Small fans are often good for triggering a vibration sensor.

If you do have good Wi-Fi throughout the house, another option might be the Kumostat wireless tag sensors. These have a long range and are not using zigbee or Z wave. They communicate to smartthings cloud to cloud. A community member has created a good integration with them. I like these sensors a lot, the only problem is that they are more expensive and you also have to buy one of their Ethernet bridges to get things set up. But they will help solve some specific use cases.

So if you have to use a multi zone set up with one hub per zone, you still have a couple of options for communication between zones.

  1. detectable physical events at the edge of a zone have a device near the edge of one zone do something which can be detected by a device in the next zone. This could be a light and the light sensor, a small fan and a vibration sensor, etc.

  2. use wifi devices, which have much longer range then zwave or zigbee, to cover a wider area. You can use these devices on their own or you can use them like the devices in 1), to create an event which can be detected in the other zone. WeMo wifi devices and Kumostat sensors both work with smart things and have longer-range then zwave or zigbee devices. Of course this only works if you have strong Wi-Fi throughout the house.

  3. use IFTTT to allow one hub to communicate with devices that have their own IFTTT channel, or that can send an http POST to the IFTTT Maker channel. LittleBits has a number of electronics components, intended for children’s projects, which can be linked to Wi-Fi, and can use IFTTT. Beecon+ can communicate with IFTTT when an Ibeacon is detected. Many other home automation devices can communicate with IFTTT.

This method can work well if your Internet connection is fast. But if your Internet connection is spotty or slow, it won’t work for as many use cases.

  1. give each zone its own IFTTT account and communicate between them with Gmail or SMS text. This also works for some use cases. I have a friend who does this with irrigation systems on two sides of the house and it works quite well. The main problem with this is that there can be added lag. So this method is good for situations where you don’t need instant response.

The difference between three and four is that in three you are creating an IFTTT connection between smartthings and another manufacturer’s IFTTT channel to reach an individual device. In method four, you are letting one smartthings hub email or text to a different smartthings hub using IFTTT. So you could use this method, for example, to synchronize modes between multiple hubs.

  1. operate each hub completely independently some people just operate each zone completely independently. Each has its own rules and schedules and there’s no attempt to communicate between them. This can work fine for some households, particularly if most of your rules are time or motion based.

So you do have some options, it just comes down to the specific details of each problem you are trying to solve.


(Brian) #10

Use one hub at the bottom of the U. Put one device in each corner of the U bottom (imagine looking at a U on the screen) and then put one on the top of each leg.

Don’t use multiple hubs, you don’t need it. As @JDRoberts says, it’s a mesh network. Expands easily unlike wifi.


#11

This could work very well if only the exterior walls are brick. :sunglasses: It really comes down to the specific architecture, including the types of interior walls.