No neutral, but will this work?


I was thinking about how I can get one of my lights connected to my smartthings hub and function reasonably well knowing that I have no neutral wires running to my switches. This light is controlled by 3 different switches and I don’t want to go down the road of getting the Smart Bulbs…they just don’t make much sense to me (at least right now). In my home, as in many others I would suspect, I have the neutral running to my light fixture. What if I were to hook up a relay (ZFM-80) to this light fixture and control my lighting through that? My assumption is that I would still be able to use my regular wall switches that are currently installed, however would still be able to control the light through the Smartthings hub. The down side is that they may get out of sync when I turn the lights on through automation.

Is this assumption correct, or am I out to lunch?


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A better plan would be to use Aeon MicroDimmers. You can probably fit one in the light fixture, where the neutral is. It can connect to the wall switch as well. Then you have a complete setup that you can dim, control and automate.


Interesting. With this, would the switches get out of sync ever? If I flicked the switch to turn on the lights, then turned them off through automation? The next time I used the wall switches would I have to flip it off then back on for them to work?

It all works. The switch connects to the micro dimmer, and the micro dimmer knows how to respond as it knows the state of things. It’s a good product.

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Wow…that’s pretty good news then.

Could you use this device to control a gas fireplace as well? For that scenario, I have a switch on the wall that has low voltage wires running to it that allows me to turn it on. Looking at another thread, I saw some individuals used the ZFM-80.

This is what I do for my lights.
For lights that are only controlled by a wall switch, the neutral has to be in the switch box or at the light itself. If the neutral is at the switch, I use a smart wall switch or dimmer with neutral to replace the current switch.

If the neutral is at the light, I use an Aeon Micro switch or dimmer:

You can also use a smart switch without neutral if you are controlling incandescent lights. It will not work with fluorescent and may or may not work with LEDs.

For lights that have a switch at the light itself along with the wall switch (bedrooms with table lamps, living room, etc), I use Philips Hue or GE Link bulbs along with a Philips hue dimmer.
I then connect the two wires at the switch with a wirenut (hard-wiring the circuit) and install the Philips Hue dimmer where the wall switch was. With a bit of work, it does fit nicely. I can then use the switch at the light itself if I need to remove power.


Thanks for everyone’s advice on this!

Sorry…one last question. The light has 3 switches that can control it. If I place the Aeon Labs DSC26103-ZWUS in the light where the neutral is, will all 3 switches work?

It should. Just be careful with the wiring.

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Great. Thanks again.