FAQ: How to migrate from Wink to SmartThings

This guide is a set of best practices, FAQ’s and getting started tips for folks who’re migrating from Wink to SmartThings.

First of all, welcome to the SmartThings community. You can find a ton of resources on the community forum, the search is a powerful tool, tags and categories are generally well maintained.

BEFORE GETTING STARTED

  • If you have Z-Wave and ZigBee devices, you will need to exclude them from your Wink hub before you can pair with your SmartThings hub. While it’s possible to reset most devices or have the SmartThings hub exclude them for you, if any of the Z-Wave devices (especially locks) are using the Anti Theft command classes, you will not be able to use them unless the original controller (Wink) excludes them first. So just to be safe, exclude them from your Wink controller and then pair with your SmartThings hub.

GETTING STARTED WITH SMARTTHINGS

What Do You Need

  • SmartThings supports Z-Wave, ZigBee and many WiFi devices (Bluetooth is on the roadmap).
    • To use Z-Wave or ZigBee device you will need a SmartThings hub. Some LAN devices (e.g. Nuki lock, Foscam/Amcrest cameras etc) also require a hub.
    • If you have only Connected/WiFi Cloud 2 cloud devices (e.g. TV’s, WiFi plugs, Nest, August etc), then you just need the SmartThings mobile app. You can see a full list of supported devices in the new SmartThing mobile app

SmartThings Hub (for Z-Wave, ZigBee and some LAN devices)

SmartThings Mobile App

  • There are two SmartThings mobile apps for the iPhone/iPad and Android phones:

    • SmartThings (aka: New v3 app / Connect / OneApp)
    • SmartThings Classic (aka: Legacy v2 app)

    It is recommended to start with the new SmartThings app and register your hub using it. The Classic app is due to be retired later this year. While both apps can work together, each has has their pros/cons. The new SmartThings app is standardized and supports the next generation of devices (Cloud to Cloud, WiFi, Bluetooth etc) in addition to Z-Wave and ZigBee. The Classic is the older app and is geared more towards custom UI’s for Z-Wave/ZigBee devices and is an optional download. Note that some SmartApps and devices require the use of the Classic app to get access to their custom/full functionality.
    Keep in the mind that both the ST mobile apps are just user interfaces to interact with SmartThings (see image below), everything runs in the SmartThings Cloud (platform) or the Hub and not on the mobile app which is why both ST mobile apps can be installed/used at the same time and both will show the same information (with some exceptions).

How SmartThings is Organized

  • SmartThings has four key concepts to note:

    • Automations - A feature of the new ST app which allows you to create basic automation triggers/rules from within the ST app itself. e.g. If motion is detected turn on light.

    • Scenes - A feature of the new ST app which allows you to create groups of devices which can be controlled via Automations.

    • SmartApps (SA) - These create use cases and automation functionality. They can range from simple basic automations (turn on/off devices) to complex automations (climate control, lock users, property management, security, rules). The forum has many custom SmartApps, you can find a list of apps on this Wiki and SmartApps installation instructions here.

    • Device Handlers (DH/DTH) - These allow the hub talk to your ZigBee, Z-Wave and WiFi devices. While SmartThings has a wide range of stock device handlers, custom DTHs bring out the best features of devices, a custom user interface and also connects devices which don’t have stock support. The forum has many custom Device Handlers, you can find a list of apps on this Wiki and Device Handler installation instructions here.

  • SmartThings is a cloud platform with some local processing. It means that almost everything goes through the SmartThings cloud, all SmartApps and custom device handlers run in the SmartThings cloud, the SmartThings mobile app send your requests to the cloud. The cloud in turn communicates with your hub which communicates with your ZigBee, Z-Wave and local LAN devices. A few Z-Wave, ZigBee device handlers and SmartApps/Automations run locally on the hub (due to limited resources on the hub) which provide a faster response time. It means that it’s a best practice to keep your hub and internet router on a UPS so that it’s always connected to the internet in order for you to have constant access to your devices from your ST app.

  • First start by connecting all your devices to SmartThings (Z-Wave, ZigBee, WiFi, Cloud etc). Now you can start using Automations and SmartApps to control these devices, create notifications etc.

USEFUL GUIDES:

SOME FAQ’s

What’s the best approach to start pairing my devices with SmartThings?

Assuming that you’ve already excluded your devices from your Wink controller, it not start by resetting them and excluding them using your SmartThings hub.

In general it’s a good idea to follow this order for adding devices to your hub for a smoother migration process:

  1. pair your mains powered Z-Wave Plus devices
  2. pair your mains powered ZigBee devices
  3. pair your mains powered Z-Wave devices
  4. pair your battery operated Z-Wave Plus devices
  5. pair your battery powered Z-Wave devices
  6. pair your battery powered ZigBee devices
  7. setup your WiFi and Cloud to Cloud (C2C) devices

If your device has trouble pairing, try these steps:

  • Exclude the device (again)
  • Reset/power cycle the device
  • Reboot the hub (power cycle)
  • Bring the device within 5ft of the hub and try pairing

How do I connect WiFi or Cloud devices to SmartThings?

SmartThings has a built in library of integrations for many WiFi and Cloud devices. Using the new ST App, click on +, click on Devices, now search for your device (by Name or Brand) and follow instructions to have the devices show up in your list of devices.
If you can’t find your device, then search the community forum for any custom device handlers or integrations for those devices.


Feel free to share your feedback and comments and I’ll keep this guide updated.

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LUTRON CASETA INTEGRATION

If you have Lutron Caseta devices, you will be able to use most of them with SmartThings, but only if you also buy a Lutron SmartBridge or SmartBridge Pro. The Wink hub included a Lutron radio inside; the SmartThings hub does not, so you have to buy the additional Lutron device in order to complete the integration.

The Lutron Caseta Fan Switch

The new Lutron Caseta fan switch does not yet work with the smartthings integration. You will still be able to use it with the Lutron app, but not in SmartThings automations.

Lutron Pico Remotes

Lutron pico remotes do not have an official integration with smartthings. If you just want to use them as an auxiliary switch in a three-way set up with a Lutron Caseta switch, you’ll be fine: You will be able to use the Lutron app to pair the pico to the master switch. Your smartthings automations will just use the master switch. If you were hoping to use the pico’s for other things, there are some unofficial alternative methods but the setup can be quite technical and require purchasing additional server devices. See the following thread for details on that method.

How to control anything with inexpensive Lutron Pico remotes

Lutron Connected Bulb Remote

Like the pico’s, the LCBR does not send its messages to the smartthings hub. There is a community created DTH for it, but all that does is allow you to add it to your smartthings network. After that you can bind it to some nearby ZLL lightbulbs and you’ll be able to turn them on and off by physically pressing the buttons on the LCBR, but that’s it. The Hub won’t know when the buttons are pushed and you can’t use the LCBR in automations.

[Alpha] Lutron Connected Bulb Remote

Which SmartBridge to get?

The basic smartbridge is about $80 less than the pro model, And either will work with the official smartthings integration. However, the pro model has additional features which will allow you to add still more third-party integrations if desired. I myself got the pro model in order to have this capability, but many people get the basic model and are just fine with it if all they are looking for is smartthings and Ifttt integration.

Many community members purchase Lutron devices from EnergyAvenue. This is a bare-bones warehouse type site, but often has the best prices. It’s also a good place to buy the smart bridge pro if you can’t find it at other retailers.

https://www.energyavenue.com/Lutron/L-BDGPRO2-WH

You should be able to find the basic smartbridge at Amazon, but maybe not the pro model.

https://www.amazon.com/Lutron-Caseta-Wireless-Bridge-L-BDG2-WH/dp/B00XPW67ZM

Regardless of which Smartbridge model you get, make sure you get the second generation (it will have a 2 in the model number). The first generation is still occasionally for sale, but has been discontinued and you’re just better off with the newer one.

Watch out for Scams

Do not buy Lutron devices from random third party retailers or off of eBay unless you are OK with getting used equipment. also check the model numbers on the device labels themselves, unfortunately it is quite common for unscrupulous people to rebox older equipment and sell it in newer generation boxes. Lutron devices are very well engineered, but also expensive, so if you see a price which is too good to be true, it probably is.

Myself, I only purchase electronics from reputable retailers with good returns policies. :wink:

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(Just putting this here as a placekeeper until somebody more knowledgeable adds a detailed post. :sunglasses:)

NEST PRODUCTS INTEGRATION

SmartThings does not have an official nest integration. Over the years there have been various community created options, but a number of them stopped working when Google changed its account structure last year.

I’m not sure what, if anything, is working now for most Nest products. :disappointed_relieved:

NEST PROTECT SMOKE DETECTORS

One option for Nest Protects Is to use them with the nest app and then add an acoustic monitor that works with smartthings so that you could create automations in the smartthings app to, say, turn on your lights when your nest protects sound an alarm.

The acoustic monitor is just a sensor connected to your SmartThings account which listens for any UL listed residential smoke alarm. They work fine. Here’s the one that has an official smartthings integration:

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@RBoy and @JDRoberts, thanks for doing this for the new folks coming from Wink, or other platforms for that matter.

:clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:

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I wouldn’t recommend installing the Classic app for a a new user. They won’t be able to create routines or install Smart Home Monitor. I wouldn’t be surprised if it is restricted even more in the future since Groovy smart apps are going extinct. That’s going to lead to a lot of frustration for people that just left a platform that got locked down.

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Good point, let me modify the recommendation. There are still quite a few things that need the use of the Classic app. The new app is getting there but not nearly there yet plus many users still feel the Classic app is more responsive and ofcourse only the Classic app provides access to custom device features at this time.

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At this point, I tell everyone to start with the new V3 app and see if it will meet their needs. If they run into something specific which requires classic, then they can look into adding it at that time. :sunglasses:

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Most people will find out for themselves that the new app is slow, often crashes, cumbersome, still has many bugs, time consuming, order of Things crash to default often etc and generally is not a pleasant user experience. As a daily driver, to actually interact with, the Classic app performs far better, snappier, more reliable, faster to respond etc etc The user can decide for themselves.

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It will be a really easy decision when Classic is relegated to manual device control only, can’t integrate to Alexa, can’t integrate to Google Home, etc.

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HOMEBRIDGE INTEGRATION

If you are already familiar with using homebridge and you just want to know how to set it up with smartthings, talk to the folks in the following thread:

[RELEASE] Homebridge SmartThings v2.0

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USING WINK RELAY WITH SMARTTHINGS

There’s no easy official way to use a wink relay device with smartthings, but there is a community-created custom integration which a number of community members are using. Note that this method will require that you have a smartthings hub on your account, it cannot be used in a “hub optional“ configuration.

[BETA] Wink Relay - Custom SmartThings Integration

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KIDDE SMOKE DETECTORS

Kidde uses its own frequency and as far as I know Wink was the only hub that had that radio. In any case, SmartThings does not, so no direct integration is possible. :disappointed_relieved:

You can do the same method described for Nest Protects above: buy an acoustic sensor that works with SmartThings and is specifically designed to listen for UL listed residential smoke alarms. These work quite well.

That way you could create automations in the smartthings app to, say, turn on your lights when your Kidde smoke detector sounds an alarm.

The acoustic monitor is just a sensor connected to your SmartThings account which listens for any UL listed residential smoke alarm. They work fine. Here’s the one that has an official smartthings integration:

(The Alexa guard feature has similar functionality, but then integrating it with SmartThings would require yet another cloud round trip, which would concern me during a fire emergency. If you have ADT or Ring Alarm monitoring it could be a good option because of their additional Alexa integration, but otherwise I myself would probably use the Ecolink instead for SmartThings integration.)

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MyQ

There is no official integration for Chamberlain MyQ garage openers with SmartThings. The closest thing is a community written integration pasted below. A couple notes on this integrations:

  1. for the best integration, it will require a separate z-wave or zigbee tilt sensor for your garage door
  2. Support in the new app might be limited. Full support is in Classic, which doesn’t have full functionality for new users migrating from Wink which can lead to confusion.
  3. This will require copy/pasting code into the SmartThings Groovy IDE.
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I am new to SmarThings, I am a wink convert or in the process of migrating. I have questions for a few of my devices, Schlage Deadbolt BE469, Wink Ceiling Fan, and possibly some direction on some tapt, and possibly outlink outles. I have got most of it going. i am just unsure if there is a better handler then what i used which is mostly GE device handlers. Thanks in advance.

For your lock you may want to check out this device handler particularly since your lock has many advanced features and also fixes a few issues with the stock one: [RELEASE] Universal Enhanced Z-Wave Lock Device Handler

For programming the lock check out Lock User Management (LUM) which is a very powerful and flexible app: [RELEASE] Lock User Management (LUM)

For your switches you’re better off using the stock device handlers since they don’t have any special features or settings which can be helped through a custom handler. The added advantage is that the stock switch device handler runs locally on the hub and is faster/more responsive. It can also work with local automations (in future) incase your Internet is out.

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Thank you, Rboy… I am familiar with scripting. I am just unfamiliar with Smarthings and the device handlers and such. So far I have had no luck getting my ceiling fan set up although I believe I added the custom app…

The first post should provide you with FAQ links and an overview of the various concepts (with links) within SmartThings. If you’re having trouble with a specific integration or custom app it’s best to post in the original topic as it’ll get more response from users of that app/integration.

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So i got the gist of device handlers and app methodology. Thanks!

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Thanks for putting together this guide guys. Everything was going fine, well except for the initial hickup on MYQ but since i have it connect to Alexa via smartCommands I soldiered on. That is, until i came to Lutron and found out that I will need to buy yet another hub to make the Lutron devices work with Smartthings. Well since i am in no mood to buy yet another hub i have for now abandoned the idea of migrating to Smartthings and gone back to wink paying them a ransom of $5 a month. Damn it !!! Curse be upon all these idiot companies insisting upon producing their own proprietary devices.

Ring Devices

As always, the model number matters. There is an official integration for some of the ring devices, particularly the first two generations of the doorbell. Beyond that, some of the models work and some don’t.

Doorbells and Cameras

There are official “supported by smartthings“ integrations for the models on the following list

( note that a wired camera and a battery camera are two different models, and one might work while the other doesn’t.)

Beginning in mid 2019, smartthings shifted to a different business model for integrations, and it is now up to the individual device manufacturers to create their integrations. Those will only work with the new V3 app. There have been different reports in the forum about which Ring models work under that integration and which don’t, so hopefully someone more knowledgeable than me on these specific models will be able to write a Ring integration post and then I will delete this one (@jkp ?)

RING SMART LIGHTING

There’s no direct integration for the ring smart lights, but you may be able to use echo as a “man in the middle“ through Alexa routines.

RING SECURITY DEVICES

Again, you can use Alexa routines as a “man in the middle“ for some devices, like the ring sensors.

For a deeper integration with the security system, see the following thread. This is a community created integration using custom code.

Ring Alarm released! (Integration project in post 13)