Keeping lights on in garage when there is motion

Hi, I am beating my head against a wall on this. I have a Samsung motion detector in our garage, and a smart switch controlling the lights. Both devices are recognized by Smartthings, no issue there. In a perfect world, i want to walk into the garage, motion sensed near immediately, lights turned on. And as I roam around the garage, the lights stay on. When there is no motion detected after 5 minutes shut off.

What is happening is that although the lights seem to turn on almost immediately, if lets say I walk around for 4 minutes, and then sit still for 1 minute, the lights turn off. How do I get the 5 minutes period of no motion to start not from the first motion event, but instead from the last?

I have 1 automation set up using the new Smartthings app with the following:
-If Samsung Motion Sensor senses motion, immediately turn on lights

Then I have another automation set up with the following:
-If the Samsung Motion Sensor doesnt sense motion for 5 minutes, turn off lights

Thanks for any guidance!


Using the SmartLighting smartapp but unselect the when motion stops.

would that work?

My Samsung phone can’t run the new SmartThings app so I don’t have any experience with the custom automations creator. Nor am I familiar with the specific motion sensor though I believe it is a model that sends an ‘inactive’ report once it has stopped detecting motion for a certain period (by contrast something like an Aqara detects motion and then stops looking for a minute and the device handler generates the inactivity).

I think the problem you are having is that the motion sensor is continuously detecting motion for four minutes but there is only ever one motion detected event. At the start it reports motion has been detected but that is it. Then after four minutes the motion stops so it waits a while and when there isn’t any more motion it reports there now isn’t any motion. So in your scenario the motion sensor indeed hasn’t sensed motion for five minutes. If you gave a literal description of your automation then it is doing what you’ve asked. So you may need to rework your automation so it is triggered by the sensor reporting inactivity. I defer to those with experience of the new app.

Personally I use the Smart Lighting smartapp (aka Smart Lights or something like that, believe) as Philippe describes, using just the one automation (selecting ‘Turn off after motion stops’ gives you a delay option).

Smart Lighting should be in the new app like it is in Classic. What you want to do is easily done that way.

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Thank you all, I am going to try the Smart Lighting app and see if that can take care of this!


It will. I use it for the exact scenario you describe.

Just to make sure the classic app is there:

Smart Lighting seems to work great. Thanks for the suggestions!


SmartLighting is great for simple automations! You might want to check out webCoRE to open up endless possibilities with ST! I use it for 90% of my automations.

I might be late to this party, but I had a similar problem. In the SmartThings app, when you set a light to turn on based on motion, there is a settings called “turn of after X minutes”. That option works great, but if there is continuous motion it will still turn the light off. That confused me.

However, just yesterday I realized that what I should have been doing was to not use the “turn light off after x minutes” feature. Instead, I had to create a 2nd automation that said “turn light off if there is no motion for X minutes”.

So to fully automate the motion sensor / light pair, you’d have 2 automations:

  • If motion starts → turn light on
  • If no motion for x minutes → turn light off

Or use Smart Lighting and do it in one step