Help setting up House

Hello all,

I have, in the last week, purchased the smartthings home kit, and also 22 Philips Hue Devices consisting of 12 BR30’s, 9 A19’s, and a lightstrip plus. I will be purchasing several more motion sensors. So far, I have 3 multipurpose sensor on my 3 main entrances to my house, and I have the motion detector set up in the hallway to my kids rooms. All working fine, but not getting as much automation out of them as I know I could. I have all of my bulbs set up with the hue app, all working fine.

Now, I want to integrate these to platforms, to have lights turn on and off in certain situations. For example, I would like it if, when my daughter wakes up, after a certain time, and comes out of her room, the bathroom light turns on. Because I know, that the only reason she would get up in the middle of the night, would be to use the bathroom, and the hallway that my motion sensor is in, leads directly to the bathroom, and they are within feet of each other.

I would also like to do some other motion, or time based automation with lights, but I don’t really know where to start. So I am asking for help. Either ongoing help via these forums, or to hire someone to do it for me.

I am probably capable of figuring it all out, but If I could get some help on things that I have been reading about like virtual switches, on/off tile, etc., I think It would really speed up my process and prevent a lot of mistakes.

I also plan on getting an Amazon echo to integrate that as well, as soon as I can get my hands on one.

Thank you in advance for anyone who is willing to help me,

Start with the Smart Lights SmartApp (Marketplace>SmartApps>Smarthings recommends). It can do your turn on light with motion between X time.

Can it also turn them back off?

Ok, I see that it can turn them off when no motion is detected. But I have another question, because this is how I think I would like it set up.

The bathroom has no windows. So I would like the light to come on with motion, at all times, and turn off with no motion at all times. But during the night, maybe after 9:00 p.m, when it comes on, I would like to be dimmed. Do I just make 2 different automatons, with the regular on switch from maybe 8:00 a.m to 9:00 p.m, then do a dimmed automation from 9:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m.?

you do two different automations based on time/sunset/sunrise. Or mode (if you’re using them). There is one little problem: there is currently a bug with Smart Lights where it doesn’t set dimming level. They just turn on at the last level. SmaetThings knows about and is supposedly working on fixing it. If you don’t want to wait for that bug to be fixed, you can check out Rule Machine, which is a custom SmartApp. Not sure how deep you’re wanting to get into customizing.

I have heard about Rule Machine. I’m willing to make the commitment get really deep into customizing, as I feel I will have to, in order to do some of the things I want to do. Should I just start out using Rule Machine, rather than doing it the other way, and then having to change it later anyways?

Is there some kind of tutorial or something on the basics of setting up and using Rule Machine?

Start by logging in here:

Read this FAQ: An Overview of Using Custom Code in SmartThings

And here is Rule Machine Rule machine - as per the app developer, this app is no longer available for new installs, distribution, or support

have fun!

Am I correct that Rule machine has to be utilized by typing in code?

not really typing, just copying and pasting to “install” it. once it’s installed, setting up a rule is very similar to other SmartApps

DO I have to enable github integration?


(20 characters)

Ok, I’m going to try installing it right now.

I got it installed. I won’t test it out until later. Should this app cover pretty much anything I need to do? Or is there another one I should install?

Rule Machine is very powerful. Personally, I only use it right now when i want to set a dimming level since it’s broken in SmartLighting. I try to stick to Routines and standard SmartApps when possible just because IMO they are easier to use, but everything else gets caught by Rule Machine. There are very few things it can’t do.

The author himself described it best in an earlier thread - (paraphrasing): think of it as the Swiss Army knife of Smartapps. Like an actual Swiss Army knife, it does many things… though it’s not necessarily the best tool for every job.

My experience has been that it will replace many, but not all, discrete apps that I previously used. There are some highly specialized apps that either cannot be done in RM or would require multiple rules to achieve the same functionality. For example, I have a custom app to notify when laundry is done. It reacts to power readings from an Aeon smart switch that powers the washer, and sends a text message and flashes the downstairs lights when the cycle is complete. The thing that makes this tricky is that our washer never drops to zero watts, since it is entirely touchscreen activated (no physical switches). Without some residual power supplied to the touchscreen there would be no way of turning the machine on. I retrospect, maybe this wasn’t the “smartest” purchase we ever made, though t is a slick machine. Anyway… back on topic, this custom app has a low power threshold setting and a timer for how long it has to be at or below threshold, in order to avoid false alarms. It works flawlessly, but I think you can see how it would be cumbersome if not impossible to replicate in any rule builder type app…

I think I accomplished what I wanted to last night. I got all of my lighting automated for the various times that we come and go. With 2 people, that come and go at different times in the morning, there are quite a few different Routines that I had to use, and I did it with a combination of the smart lighting app, and rule machine. Is it just me, or can smart lighting not be triggered by routines, but only by modes? Thats all I could do. So when I made a new routine, I also had to make a new mode of the same name, only so that it I could have the routine start at a certain time, and then trigger the mode of the same name, so that mode could trigger the smart lighting app. Seems kind of silly to have to create a mode in order to trigger the smart light app. It would be less work, if the smart light app could be triggered from a routine. Am I correct, or did I miss something?

Also, was wonder about any conflicts between the automated lighting and my hue apps. So now I have the lighting automated, but what if I want to mess around with my hue apps? Say I have a scene from one of my hue apps on, and its time for my "kids bedtime routine, when some of the lights shut off, and others dim. Does it run the app, but keep the colors of the scene that I had running.? Will it change the colors of the lights to there default color and then run the routine? Will it not run the routine at all because I have the hue app running?