SmartThings Community

Home Decorators Ceiling Fan/Light Controller MR101Z - First Impressions


(Jimi Moore) #26

Ok. Well other than the dropouts the DTH is working great for me. My fan is a floor above my hub (although not terribly far away) and it’s my only Zigbee device. Wonder if that’s the issue?


(Dale C) #27

Approximately how many feet away is the ceiling fan from the Hub? Use a tape measure but you don’t need to be exact but approximately

OH YEAH I FORGOT - Did you pull the Zigbee antenna (it’s the white one) out from under the fan cowl cover and pin it up to your ceiling?

Here is a good read on wireless range and repeaters for SmartThings


(Triosinal) #28

Thanks so much for this dalec, I’ve been waiting for proper ceiling fan control for some time.

Do you know what the specs are on the lighting control? I skimmed through the fan instruction manual and didn’t see it anywhere; hopefully it can dim dimmable LEDs?

This is so awesome. I’ll be buying in on this myself soon.


(Dale C) #29

Watch my video, you will see it dimming my LED’s in the fan. I’m sure there may be some LED’s it might not be compatible with because dimmable LED’s can be finicky.


(Jimi Moore) #31

Yeah. I did. Thanks for for the other tips.

I wonder if a few of these Zigbee bulbs (https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00NOL16K0) would help expand (repeat) my Zigbee footprint and perhaps resolve my intermittent connectivity issues?

When the fan is unresponsive to button presses within ST is there a way for me to check the IDE to discern whether it has an active connection to the fan (or any other helpful info)?


(Dale C) #32

You can see in the IDE under MyDevices the status of a device and the Last Activity. But the new mobile app can also tell you this now. If you have the Device Health enabled it is suppose to flag you when a device is no longer available. In you mobile app you can check this under the More, Additional Features heading. You can do a search here in the forums and some people turn this off because of other issues but I can’t remember why.

The GE Link bulb should be OK, I have about 10 of these and a couple things to consider is when someone flips off the light it can’t be repeating and they do drop off the network from time to time and need to be reset by flipping the light switch 5 times , on then off every two seconds.

Do a search here in the forums on the Lowe’s Iris smartplug. I heard that it is supposed to not only do Zigbee but also Zwave. I got one of those for my house to boost both. But it’s the newer version that does it not the first generation I think.

In the IDE you can also watch the devices Logging to see if its passing information.


(Dale C) #33

I have been pleased with the latest changes I made with the device handler. It has a new look and feel with the fan control as the primary interface. It works for 90% of what I want so it’s definitely ready for distribution but still working out some additional features to make it more configurable for others. Wish there was a way to store a state so it could be used in some logic control…

Update: my device coding buddies Kevin and Sticks have come through and shown me how easy it really is to store the last state and make it happen the way I want.


#34

Bulbs are one of those “maybe, maybe not” issues. See the bulb FAQ ( this is a clickable link)

And the GE links in particular have their own firmware issues and tend to drop off the network more than any other zigbee brand, so I definitely wouldn’t start with those. :scream: Eco-smart or Cree would be a better one to try.

All of that said, in the US many community members like the Lowe’s iris pocket socket. It’s a reliable zigbee repeater.

https://www.lowes.com/pd/Iris-120-Volt-White-Smart-Plug/999925330

Whatever repeating device you choose, after you have it paired and in place, you want to get the fan to update its neighbor table so it will use the new repeater.

To initiate this process, you do a “network heal.” For zigbee devices, that means taking the hub off power (including removing any batteries) and leaving it off power for at least 15 minutes. Leave the other zigbee devices on power. This will cause the other devices to go into “panic mode” because they can’t reach the hub. Then when the hub comes back on power all the devices will rebuild their individual neighbor tables. This process can take a little while, so you may not see the full effect until the next day.


(Dale C) #35

@JDRoberts I LOVE IT ! You are the guru my friend :slight_smile:

I thought I had read somewhere that the Iris plug was zigbee and zwave repeating but can’t find it. Maybe it was my wishful thinking there was a device that did both


#36

Yes, it’s designed to do both, but community members have reported various issues with the zwave repeater part of the iris device. But the zigbee seems to work fine. :sunglasses:

See the article in the community – created wiki on repeaters:

http://thingsthataresmart.wiki/index.php?title=Repeaters


#37

I forgot to mention one thing specific to fans. As I understand it, in this case the smartthings hub is on a lower floor.

So that means signal has to go up through the floor past the fan casing and then reach the receiving antenna on the device.

I understand that you have run the antenna out of the fan canopy so it’s just flat on the ceiling, right?

Even so, I’ll bet that there are times when the signal is blocked by the fan blade and times when it is not. Just depending on where the fan stops or if the fan is moving.

Imagine that one person is sitting in a chair in the room with the fan looking up at the antenna. And there is a tiny display on the antenna that is displaying A letter of the alphabet.

Now imagine that there is another person on the floor below, where the hub is, and they are holding a flashlight and they are shining the light up through A hole in the floor towards the fan.

There will be moments when the letter on the display is very easy to read, because the light is hitting it straight on. But there will be other moments when the letter will be almost impossible to read, because the fan blade is blocking the light.

And if the fan is moving, the situation is constantly changing.

That’s what’s going on when you’re trying to get signal between the zigbee antenna on the fan controller and the hub down below. It can be really tricky, and can lead to intermittent failures. (Moving fans are almost always included on exams in college network engineering classes. :wink:)

If the fan blades are metal, the problem is 50 times worse.

Anyway, another thing to consider is whether you need to bounce signal sideways in order to try to get it to the fan antenna.

You may need to do some experimenting to find the best positioning for a repeater to get signal to the fan. Just one of those things. :sunglasses:


#38

Since the price of the replacement parts have increased to 80’s shipped, I caved in and bought HD home decorator Gardinier ceiling fan rather than upgrading previous Winward IV model. Now I don’t have to mess with the manual reverse toggle as it’s built into the remote and has brighter LED. Did have to get two units as first one had flaky controller so went back to HD and exchanged for second one which works perfectly.


(Jimi Moore) #39

@pilot04 Can you describe the flakiness you experienced on your first fan controller? I’ve been having trouble with mine and wonder if grabbing a new controller/fan would do me good. I actually looked over the packaging from my fan again and realized my fan was a return which makes me doubt it’s integrity even more.


(Jimi Moore) #40

Love the analogies @JDRoberts! Seriously thanks for the write up.


#41

My first unit seemed like it was used as the controller wires were messy compared to my second unit where it still had the wire ends attached where you can remove them before installing wire nuts. Also, pairing was difficult with the first unit, it took three resets before it would pair. The speed control was wonky as one time it didn’t want to move off high speed until I turn off the wall switch and another time the lights didn’t respond to remote. Lastly, I turned motor prior to installing the blades and noticed it was not level as I turned the full rotation so made a louder noise with vibration when on high speed.

The second unit had level blade rotation and considerably quieter on high speed. It paired to ST on first attempt and is fully functional on our testing so far. We’re pleased with the Gardinier model and believe we made the right choice to get a new fan for the extra ~$90 beyond buying only parts the replacement from King of Fans.


(Jimi Moore) #42

Thanks @pilot04. That sounds almost exactly like my fan/issues. You’ve inspired me to exchange it.


(Emerson Vier) #43

I have this

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Hugger-52-in-Brushed-Nickel-Ceiling-Fan-AL383-BN/205479530

Can I add this parts?


(Dale C) #44

Looks like a perfect candidate for the upgrade! The fans that are not good candidates are the ones that have embedded speed controllers that you can’t remove out of the control circuit. These seem to be the DC motor versions


(Wallace Walcher) #45

Thank you ranga and dalec for this device handler. It works great using the Smartthings app. When I use Google Home however, it only seems to be able to turn the light on and off. There is no fan control. Is there a way to get that working, or am I missing something?


(Dale C) #46

No you’re not missing anything. It is still alpha. The only way today is to use a custom smartapp like CoRE . However I should be getting the beta version posted out very shortly that allows all control points to be exposed. @stephack did a great job on it using a brand new feature in device handlers to expose control through all the standard smartapps. Stay tuned. :slight_smile: