How to get an alert in case of power outage/failure?


(Tim Olson) #1

I’m pretty new to ST, so sorry if this is an ignorant question. Although, after much research there doesn’t seem to be an easy solution to get an alert for a power failure. I’ve found a few, like an open/close with a relay or using a Aeon Z-Wave Smart Energy Monitor Meter, but am wondering if there’s an easier way. Like a SmartApp that regularly checks if a sensor is active or not. Currently I only have a Leviton DZPA1 smart switch and my Ecobee3 smart thermostat (motion & temp) hitched up. So I was hoping I could use those, but would gladly buy another sensor that would work better.

Also, BTW, I have the ST Hub and my network on a UPS that should give me 1-2 days of power, so the internet will be on during a power failure.

Any help would be greatly appreciated. :slight_smile:


#2

If I understand your question, you were saying you would like to know when mains power is out but the Internet is still available and that both your router and your hub would be on a UPS power supply.

For that situation, you wouldn’t get an alert instantly when the power went out, but there are several community created “wellness check” smart apps that could alert you when a particular device had stopped reporting for a little while. People more commonly monitor those to look for individual devices that have gone bad, but in your situation as long as the hub still has power and Internet and the smartthings cloud is up, you could use A wellness check for a more general power outage.

Use the quick browse lists in the community – created wiki and look for “wellness check”

http://thingsthataresmart.wiki/index.php?title=How_to_Quick_Browse_the_Community-Created_SmartApps_Forum_Section

I believe that this will only work if the hub itself is still drawing power from an ups. If you let the hub go to battery power, I believe it switches to its local operations, which means it would stop talking to the cloud and the wellness check would not be operational, nor would notifications.


(Brian) #3

I might be simple, but I leave the batteries out of mine. When the power goes out, it disconnects, and I get a notification by default. Pretty easy. Yes, if the internet goes out, I get the same notification, but my power and internet go out at the same time pretty much.

There is a thread where someone was monitoring a battery and mains powered device in some way, I’ll try to find it. Obviously it would require your internet to remain up which is iffy and the main reason why I’m lazy and don’t do it.

Here is the first I found: This is awesome! Power is Out based on state of v1 Motion Sensor


(Tim Olson) #4

Thank you for pointing me in the right direction, and also for answering so quickly!

I was wondering where the SmartApp “list” was. I’ll be spending a lot of time perusing the SmartApps.

Also, I’m anticipating that I can also find a SmartApp that will tell me if my freezer lost power, since it’s on a GFI outlet.

:thumbsup:


(Tim Olson) #5

Thanks!

Just to clarify, do you mean leaving the batteries out of the ST Hub? So will the ST Hub automatically send an alert when it loses communication or do I have to put in code somewhere? I’ve seen a number of code/program posts, but I don’t know how to use them … yet.


(Brian) #6

Yup, if you have a V2, just leave the batteries out. If you have a V1, you have literally zero steps to take. No code necessary with either hub, when the cloud can’t reach your hub, it will tell you it’s inactive. Easy.


(Tim Olson) #7

Cool … thanks again!


#8

Right, if you don’t need the ST hub to be operational, then its losing connection with the cloud account will cause a notification to be sent. So as always, it just comes down to the details of what you need.

As for the link to the thread that discusses the V1 motion sensor, that device is no longer sold. Which is unfortunate, because it was one of the few that would send a notification when it shifted from mains power to battery power. It was very popular in 2014 for this kind of purpose. But there’s been two more generations of that device since then, and it’s really hard to find the v1 motion sensor to buy now.


(Tim Olson) #9

Actually I’d prefer both approaches … the batteries out method and one of the wellness check SmartApps.

Would this Wellness Check SmartApp work with my sensors? If so, how do I “download” or use the app? … https://github.com/erocm123/SmartThingsPublic/blob/master/smartapps/erocm123/device-monitor.src/device-monitor.groovy

Thanks again!


#10

Custom code FAQ. :sunglasses:


(Neal (www.zebrablinds.com / www.zebrablinds.ca)) #11

Another option is the following:

If you have an android phone or tablet that you are planning to use as a main controller, install tasker and sharptools. Then set Tasker to toggle a virtual switch when the power goes out which can trigger a notification.

Alternatively you can use core and tasker to do the same thing and bypass the virtual switch completely.


(Tim Olson) #12

Thank you!


(Tim Olson) #13

Cool idea … I’ll try to do that too. I actually use Automagic Premium instead of Tasker, but hopefully it will work.

I’m happy to see all these good ideas.

Thanks!


(Neal (www.zebrablinds.com / www.zebrablinds.ca)) #14

Tasker is pretty powerful. You can even use it and a few other plugins together to control your home. Case in point:


(Tim Olson) #15

Very cool … it sure is going to take me a while to absorb all this. It sure it fun, though!

:slight_smile:


(Tim Olson) #16

Well … I got the "Device Monitor - Get Notified if Devices Stop Reporting " working, but noticed it only alerts me after the device has been inactive for an hour. So I’ve been trying to figure out the solution which uses a relay with a door/window sensor. I think I get the basic concept, but was wondering if anyone has any specifics of how to wire the relay to power and then how to wire the relay to the z-wave window sensor so it will send an alert.

Thanks for any help!


( I hate Mondays) #17

I have AT&T Digital Life - they use z-wave for their devices, but some of their devices have a battery backup - I have integrated that into ST (I can see all window and door contact sensors in ST) - and some of the devices (keypad, repeater, siren, DLC) will let me know if the power is off of mains or battery. But I’m a special case :wink: Perhaps one could find a device that has a battery backup - maybe the wired Nest Protect, for example? and use that to figure out power status.


(Tim Olson) #18

Thanks … That sound’s like a good solution. Although, I’m wondering if it will have the same delay as the wellness check SmartApp. It probably will depend on what device I find, so I’ll do more searching to see if there’s something what would send an immediate alert.

That’s why I’m leaning toward a relay with an open/close sensor. It sounds like it sends a quick alert … that is if I can figure out how to do it and what sensor to get.


( I hate Mondays) #19

The Aeotec siren has a battery backup. Check the DTH to see if it provides information on the power supply, whether mains or battery - you should get an immediate warning, if the siren reports that.


(Tim Olson) #20

BTW, I tried this yesterday and it worked great! Thank you for the suggestion. It has a 10 minute delay, though, to get a notification. Is that a factor of the ST Hub?