Inexpensive smart bulbs? (2019)

I don’t have tons of money so I can’t get Philip’s or lifx. What’s the least expensive light bulbs that can connect with smartthings.

For white only bulbs, IKEA Tradfri work well and cost about $13 each. At 1000 lm, this is one of the brightest bulbs you can buy, really nice in a bargain bulb.

For RGBW color bulbs, probably Sengled Element, often on sale at around $23

Both will say they need a hub/Gateway, but you can use the smartthings hub for that, you do not need to get the brand hub as well.

The Sengled bulbs do not work as repeaters, So that’s a disadvantage on their part especially if you have a big house.

Don’t get GE link bulbs even if they are on sale, they have a lot of problems.


Thanks! And this includes any other brands that would involve making a new device handler?

I’m sorry, I don’t understand this question. :disappointed_relieved:

Bulbs don’t typically have many settings or capabilities. As long as it is z wave or a supported zigbee profile, custom dth is not needed.

The Segled daylight only you can get for about $7.00 a piece. I bought these in an 8 pack for $57. They have worked pretty well.

Sengled Smart LED Daylight


Like Cheaper brands from China that can still integrate with minor coding

I’m sure there are some, I don’t know every brand ever sold anywhere if that’s what you’re asking. The ones that I listed are reliable, have legitimate safety certifications, are easy to find, and are known to work well with SmartThings.

I’m sure other people will have additional suggestions. :sunglasses:

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Hues were marked down at home depot a few weeks ago… $10/bulb

I’ll 2nd the Sengled recommendation, so long as you don’t need them to act as Zigbee repeaters, because as JD notes, they don’t. Other than that they work well.


I really like the Cree zwave bulbs. $14 but if you watch there is a coupon. I got mine for $11 each

Cree BA19-08027OMF-12CE26-1C100 Connected 60W Equivalent Soft White (2700K) A19 Dimmable LED Light Bulb

I’m more than happy with the Lightify LED 60w equivalent from Amazon for $8.08 each. It’s white only but dimmable and plenty bright. I have it in an enclosed fixture on my front porch and it’s works flawlessly for over a year as a dusk/dawn light as well as fading to different levels based on some conditions I have setup in Smartthings/WebCore. Planning on getting 2 more for my back porch.

I will third the Sengled bulbs, I have 4 of them. The first two in got about a year ago with my smartthings link. The last two I got about a month ago for my front outdoor lights. The best part is the pair right up with smartthings. Cheap and no additional bridge/ hub needed.

I also have a sylvania lightify bulb. It is ok, but not as impressed with them.

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The Sylvania bulbs are fine by themselves. The problem is that they have a known issue which can cause them to lose messages being passed on from other zigbee devices, such as battery operated sensors. This seems most often to occur when the network is busy.

So it all depends on exactly what combination of devices you have in your house. If you use Z wave devices for anything battery operated, then you shouldn’t have a problem with them. But if you want to use zigbee battery operated devices, the Sylvania bulbs can actually create problems in your mesh, making it look like sensors are off-line or not responding when in fact they are, it’s just that the Sylvania bulbs are not passing the messages along. See the note in the official supportbase article:

So as long as you understand this limitation, there’s no problem with using them.

See the community FAQ for more details: ( this is a clickable link)

( I should also add that Osram/Sylvania uses different firmware for their US versus EU bulbs. The problem with dropped messages is a known problem with the US version. I honestly don’t know if it affects the EU version as well or not. )

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That was kind of my experience. I was having issues with a hamptonbay Zigbee fan controller, and narrowed it down to the bulb through some trial and error.

One thing to point out about this is that the Sylvania bulbs do attempt to act as repeaters. The sengle bulbs as i understand it do not. So keep that in mind as well if you are looking to add repeaters as well. I have added a few other items to act as repeaters and the issue is mostly gone now. I don’t really feel like the sylvania bulbs are bad, just not as good of a value as the Sengled bulbs. I feel like they are just a very good value proposition.

The only downside to anything other then hue is my understanding is Hue has the best individual app, and if do you run into conditions you want to use an app outside of Smartthings, ie Smartthings is down or you just want to, then Hue is far better then any alternative. I just accept that without Smartthings working my bulbs may not work. They run local so the smartthings cloud isn’t exactly needed, but allot of smartthings stuff depends on the cloud being up.


On JDRoberts recommendation (a fountain of knowledge and a willingness to share it), I bought 10 of the IKEA TRÅDFRI 1000 lumen E26 LED bulbs. 9 of them paired within 15 seconds each but 1 still will not pair so matter how many times I try. This is a defective bulb. It has ceased to … sorry Monty Python moment…

These will initially be recognized as “thing”, and will not respond to commands, so the IDE entry needs to be changed to a ZLL dimmer bulb. Once that is done, it can be controlled like any other smart LED white bulb.

I didn’t see in the list an option to choose an iKEA nor a TRÅDFRI.


To update, I purchased and installed 3 more of the Sylvania Lightify bulbs. 2 on my back porch and one in a lamp in my sons room. No issues. I have the back porch lights working through Smart Lighting and a few WebCore pistons in conjunction with my Arlo Pro cameras and back door sensor and they all function as they should.

The only issue I’m having is the one in my son’s room I’m using as a dimmable night light. But even on 1% it’s still a little too bright. These are 60W equivalent so I’m thinking something that is more along the lines of 40W equivalent would work better. Any suggestions on a smaller wattage smart bulb for that application?

You might want to rethink using a connected bulb in a bedroom. All the ones I have seen turn on full bright after a power outage. That can be a bit disconcerting if a lamp come on full brightness at 3 in the morning, ask me how I know.

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Some people like that feature as there may be things in the house that they want to check on just after a power outage. ( at my own house, for example, there is medical monitoring equipment that needs to be checked, so waking people up is actually a good thing. But different things work for different people. )

If you are using Hue bulbs connected to a hue bridge, you will be paying more, but one of their advanced features is the ability to set the power recovery behavior for each individual bulb. :sunglasses: So you could have the bulbs in the baby’s room stay off after power is restored, but one of the ones in the master bedroom come on. Or however you wanted to set it up, including just having them all stay dark after the power is recovered.

But you’re right, so far almost all the brands simply restored to full power after an outage. That’s to make sure that if someone clicks power on and off at the switch, they get the expected behavior of the bulb turning on when the switch is turned on.


Good points about coming back on to full power with a power outage. I was aware of this from my other bulbs that exhibit the same behavior after an outage. I run a fan when I sleep at night, so if the power goes out I instantly wake up. Could then set the light back to 1%. This is for a train obsessed 2 year old with a train lamp that he MUST use in his new “big boy” room. So the smart bulb was an easy way to use it as a dimmer. I wonder if there is a way to setup a WebCore piston to get the light back to 1% after a power outage?

Any suggestions on a smaller wattage bulb?