SmartThings Community

How many Hub’s I can add in one location?

(oyaz22) #1


How many Hub’s I can add in one location?
And how many devices that I can add in each Hub’s in same location?

What is the maximum amount of hubs in a home?
(Nathan Curtis) #2

One primary hub per location, although the Samsung WiFi Mesh device counts as one hub. You can have multiple locations in a single account. Hundreds of devices are easily supported on each hub. There is currently a limitation of 32 DIRECT zigbee connections without repeaters. (to work around add repeating zigbee devices near your hub)

Now I have to ask… Why?


This was all true for the V2 hub with the classic app, but much of it has changed with the newer hubs and with the new app.

You can now have more than one hub per location, but the devices still can only be controlled from the hub that they join to.

The SmartThings app does support multiple Hubs in one Location. However, devices can only be paired to one controller at a time. This means that while the Hubs and their devices will exist on the same Location, devices can only be controlled by the Hub that they are paired to. You can also control multiple Hubs from one account.

I don’t know what the limit is on total hubs per location, though. Maybe @Brad_ST does.

As far as devices per hub, every zwave hub, regardless of brand, has a total limit of 232 devices (counting the hub) Because of the addressing scheme which is used. There is also a limit of 4 hops per message.

There’s no practical limit on the number of zigbee mains powered devices that can be added to the hub. However, each mains powered zigbee device will have a limit as to how many battery powered devices can use it as a “parent,” this limit is typically 3 to 7. As was already mentioned, the hub itself will have a limit for this kind of children of either 32 or 64 depending on the model.

The limit on hops for the zigbee profile that the hub uses is 15 into the hub and 15 out again.

So you put all of that together and a practical limit for a single hub is probably between 400 and 500 devices. But you would have to be really careful about setting up the network if you were doing that, and You still hit the 232 limit for zwave.

And in the past there have been some display limits where certain kinds of things could only display maybe 100 or 200. That just gets complicated.

I believe there is a limit in the new app on the total number of “rooms“ at 20. So that’s another issue you can run into.

Smartthings has said many times that their typical customer has fewer than 15 devices. So it isn’t really a system which has been designed for a lot of devices.

There was one community member who was operating an apartment complex with a hub in each unit, but they ended up writing their own software to manage the whole facility, the basic smartthings app just wasn’t up to it.

(Vick Sarkis) #4

so am i understanding this correctly?
To have multiple hubs in one physical location / say a big house / i would have to use smartthings hub v3 and the new app for it ?
i want to deploy 1 hub per floor of a building and have the rooms in that floor connect to the floor hub then control all the hubs and access them from the smartthings hub. will this be possible with hub v2 or only v3?


Not quite.

And there’s a difference between a physical “location”, meaning a building, and a smartthings account “location”, which has to do with what you can see in the app at one time.

You can certainly have more than one hub, even more than one V one hub, in the same physical building. Just imagine an apartment complex where everybody has their own hub in their own smartthings account. You could even put them all under one account (I don’t know what the limit is but certainly people have had three or four). But none of them can control the devices that belong to the others and you have to keep changing the Set of devices that you are looking at. You can only look at the set that belongs to one hub at a time.

There was a huge change with the “smartthings (Samsung connect)“ app which was released in 2018. Now you can have more than one hub showing in the UI at a time, but again, each can only control the devices attached to it. So you can’t set up a rule that has a motion sensor from hub 1 turn on a light from hub 2 using the official features.

( There is an unofficial way to do it with the classic app using webcore, but it tends to introduce lag and it’s really complicated to set up. And I don’t think it works with the new app.)

So essentially if you want to just treat each one as a separate account, they can physically be in the same building. But if you want to look at, say, all the hall lights for all 8 floors at once then you have to use the new app, and you can’t set up an automation that could turn off all the lights at once. You would have to have one automation for each floor. You also can’t group together lights that belong to different hubs.

Also, I don’t know if this matters for your use case, but you can’t set up an Amazon echo to handle multiple smartthings hubs at the present time. They said they would like to be able to do that, but it doesn’t work right now.

(Vick Sarkis) #6

oh wow thanks for that super clear explanation. Thats exactly what my question was :slight_smile:
All i want to do is treat each floor as its own location and setup simple dim lights at xyz time to xyz limit and then to full brightness at xyz time. so i can repeat each process for each floor and have them do their tasks. and as far as seeing them all in one place , thats no big deal, either i will have my friend use the new smartthings app or have him swap from 1 to the other , but from the setup we are looking to deploy it makes no sense for him to check often anyway. as long as they do their job 80% of the time we both will be happy with that outcome. since in a home environment the user checks all the time and interacts with the app frequently i can see how that would get annoying fast but in this case since its just setup , program automation then forget it , i think it should work perfectly.


Well, it won’t “work perfectly,“ because nothing in smartthings works perfectly, but it will theoretically work OK. :wink:

Although I don’t understand why you want to have one hub per floor anyway? Are these separate residences? Or is the building built out of Adobe or concrete?


Also, I don’t know if 8 hubs is too many, you should verify that with support.

(Vick Sarkis) #9

no this is a multi level building that my friend owns. It has 8 floors, he just wanted a way to dim down the lights in the hallways during night time. there is a 12 inch concrete slab between each floor. So i thought if i tried to use 1 hub and link all 8 floors together there would be a high chance of the switches getting disconnected and not running the dimming automation we want to achieve. Since each floor has its own networking and electrical panel i figured why not put one on each floor and have them be as stable as possible since the hub and the light switches that control the hallway lights will be in the same room (like 10 feet from each other). If i try to use 1 hub then i have to hope that the upper floors will be able to hop down to the hub and given the building has 12inch concrete slabs in each floor thats a lot of distance for zwave to go. what do u think ? Do you have a better solution i can use :slight_smile:


I agree, the concrete could be a problem.

Multilevel rental? Or multilevel single family? I wouldn’t use SmartThings for rental property.

Is this the same property we were just talking about last week?

(Vick Sarkis) #11

ya same property from last week, but we are not making guest room lights smart or anything just the comman hallways.


Reliable hallway lighting is incredibly important for hotels and rental properties. And legally required in most jurisdictions. One slip and fall case averted and you’d have more than paid for the price of a decent commercial lighting system.

Look at it this way: if SmartThings were suited to commercial projects like this, they would have a commercial projects division. Which they don’t. Philips does, Leviton does, Lutron does, Control4 does. Even Amazon Alexa does. (Really. See link at the end of this post.) SmartThings doesn’t.

Do your friend a real favor, and select a system designed for commercial use. Just sayin’…

(Vick Sarkis) #13

i agree with u in some respect but when it comes to this scenario i would love to understand how it would be different. so for example. i am replacing 2 light switches with ge zwave and adding them to smartthings hub, which u are saying is a bad idea since its not commercial grade, ok fair enough. So what is the point of failure? the light switch itself? if so , that can happen with any light switch, i checked out the lutron vive which is one of the higher end for commercial and its still just a simple light switch, so if or when that switch fails then we have darkness again, right?
as far as i can understand if the hub fails it has nothing to do with the switch state, meaning if the light is off it will stay off or if its on it will stay on correct?
I’m not trying to agrue but more like trying to understand if i were to go with something like lutron vive i would still face the same possibility of failure point - being the light switch itself going bad no?

( co-founder Terry @ActionTiles; GitHub: @cosmicpuppy) #14

Reasonable assumption, but unfortunately, there are plenty of reports of SmartThings “randomly / inexplicably” toggling switches from time to time.

I believe the odds and frequency of this are “low” - but why take the chance? Surely the relative investment is trivial, considering all of the many advantages to a commercial qualified system.


What country is the hotel in? There are many different code requirements for hotel lighting.

Anyway, as @tgauchat mentioned, the SmartThings cloud can send bad commands to the switch, causing the lights to randomly turn on or off. Multiple forum reports on this.

Note this one from a few months ago is specifically about switches, not smart bulbs:

And a whole separate set of reports on rules with “sunset” as a trigger not firing correctly. Again, including recent ones.

It’s not about whether a switch on the wall will still turn the lights on and off. It’s about whether an automated rule unexpectedly fails, either because lights turn on when they shouldn’t or, worse for a hotel, because they turn off when they shouldn’t, such as when a guest (who may not even have access to the switch and definitely doesn’t know where it is) is halfway down an unfamiliar hallway. :pleading_face:

The following FAQ details the points of vulnerability.

How to: Planning for Outages

(Vick Sarkis) #16

Wow guys thank you all seriously for all the awesome comments. I appreciate every single one of your ideas and criticisms.
I have so far taken 24 certification courses from lutron vive for commercial and i would love to ask you guys a question.
To setup a similar function of dimming hallway lights to 80% at night time then back to 100% in the morning i would have to deploy the following. A Vive load controller (say a switch or a PowPak dimming module) maybe a wireless controller and to automate things i would need a Vive Wireless Hub.
So in this scenario the light switch and or the PowPak module can also fail and cause either the automation not to execute or turn off all the lights bringing me back to the same issue. I guess the only difference would be is that the Vive Wireless hub costing 20x more then smartthings should not have any false triggers or random triggers. Am i understanding this correctly?

(Nathan Curtis) #17

You’re correct, but you now have legal coverage from insurance because you have a commercially certified platform used in its intended spacd. If you choose SmartThings, I’m fairly certain your insurance WILL refuse to pay claims because you’re using a consumer device… Your 20x savings just disappeared… This is one of the instances where it doesn’t pay to skimp.

(Vick Sarkis) #18

what about “Lutron Caseta Wireless Smart Bridge” i know this is home grade but do you guys have any experience with this? My friend also wants to have dimmers in the lobby so he can dim the lights at night time same as hallways, u guys think the lutron caseta line will also be as bad as smartthings?