Looking for advice: zwave telephone signaler

Hi, I’m new here and have been using ST for a year. I built my first simple project wiring a zwave door/window contact sensor into an existing wired door chime. When someone pushes the doorbell, the sensor alerts the ST hub to turn on the Philips Hue bulbs. It works great.

I’m ready for my next project and need some help. I have a video phone and it has an RJ11 telephone port with a label says Flasher. My goal is to use the RJ11 port to turn on the Philips Hue bulbs when the videophone rings.

At first, I searched for a zwave telephone signaler/flasher and couldn’t find any. I presume there is not one readily available. So I’m willing to tink with something to accomplish the goal. I have a basic understanding that I need a zwave sensor to listen to any voltage coming from that port.

I recently learned about Fortrezz MimoLite and wonder if I could wire it with RJ11 cable. If that’s not possible, then does anyone have a suggestion? I’d appreciate any help provided here. :slight_smile:

Take a meter and measure the voltage on the flasher output. Find a dry contact relay to match that voltage. Get a door sensor with a dry contact such as the Ecolink or Monoprice.

Wire the output of the flasher to the dry contact of the sensor.

Use the open/close status of that sensor to build your rule.

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FAQ: List of devices with dry contact input from external sources

Leviton makes a zwave pocketsocket with an RJ11 port which is intended for building interfaces to non-Z wave systems, but I think it’s way overkill for what you need, as well as being very expensive. (Typically around $120.)


So I just mention it because it does exist, and there might be a contractor who needed something with two way communication that looked more finished than just wiring to a dry contact, but I don’t think it really fits your particular use case.

Another hacky but works option is just to buy an inexpensive phone flasher, put it in a box with a lux sensor, and trigger off of the lux sensor. Or you could get the kind of “flasher“ that vibrates and trigger off of a vibration sensor. Same idea. Create an external change in the environment and then use a smartthings – enabled sensor that can detect the change. :sunglasses:.


That’s super smart @JDRoberts!

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Just field tech logic. :wink:

I’ve previously mentioned the time when we had to connect two systems that didn’t talk to each other, so we had the first system start a toy remote car which was picked up by a motion sensor on the second system. :racing_car: :sunglasses:

Later we replaced the toy car with a small fan, same idea But it looked more professional.

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@rontalley I measured the voltage on the flasher output several times. The multimeter display repeatedly shows 0.3. Does 0.3 mean it’s 3V? The EcoLink DWZWAVE2.5-ECO uses CR123A Lithium battery which rates at 3V. Also I measured the input RJ11 cable on an old sonic alert TR75 that I used to use with my video phone. It shows 0.5.

When you said “wire the output of the flasher to dry contact of the sensor”, would that mean cut a piece of input RJ11 cable and wire to the Ecolink?

@JDRoberts the luminance sensor in a box with a phone flasher is great idea.

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Just to be clear, you need to measure the voltage on the flasher output while the phone is ringing and the signal is being sent to the flasher. Is that what you were doing when you measured 0.3V?

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No, I didn’t measure the voltage while the phone is ringing but thank you for the clarification, @MinerJason. I’ll do it when I get a chance. :slight_smile:

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Does the phone flash an LED when ringing? Homeseer makes a zwave device that sticks over an led and can tell if it’s flashing.

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To catch a phone call, you will want very quick response time on the light sensor. So that would probably be either a plug-in sensor or the Fibaro multisensor if you are willing to spend that much.