Operating Temp of SmartThings? (Or: Baby, it's cold outside!)


(Chrisb) #1

Anyone know what the operating temperature range is for SmartThings? Here in Michigan we’ve dropped below freezing a number times now and I’m wondering if this is effecting my SmartThings.

Lately I’ve seen very erratic behavior from some of my items that are in my (detached) garage. Namely my Presence Sensors and SmartThings Multis.

My Tag have been doing the Disappearing/Reappearing game that I think most people have experienced… that is: The tag will be present, then show as gone, only to reappear just a few minutes later. Some times this happens many times in a hour. This isn’t a huge deal for me because I have a 15 minute “fail sail” built into the program that opens/closes my garages. This means it would have to disappear for 15 minutes, then reappear before the program tries to open the garage.

However, lately I’ve had issues where a tag will “disappear” for hours at a time. Come home, tag works fine… it shows up as present. Then maybe 4 or 5 hours later look at my SmartThigns and my tag has been gone for an hour. It’ll often stay gone for 10+ hours at a time (over night). Sometimes it comes back, some times it doesn’t unless I pull out the battery and then re-insert the battery.

What’s complicating things further is that the two multis that I have on my garage doors (set up as SmartSense Garage Door Sensor Button devices) seem to be behaving erratically too. Often they will show as closed in both the IDE and the mobile app when the door is actually open. This is a SERIOUS problem as I’ve left my house expecting my door to close, or at the very least to get a notification when I’ve left my door open too long… but because the sensor says it’s closed when it isn’t, these things are happening. I’ve already left my garage open a number of times now.

This morning my wife left for work shortly after 7am. But her garage is reporting that it hasn’t opened since 2pm yesterday!

I’m wondering if the fact that we’re dipping to very slow temps is having an effect on these devices.


(Pmsmaker) #2

FYI -
http://batteryuniversity.com/learn/article/discharging_at_high_and_low_temperatures
The performance of all battery chemistries drops drastically at low temperatures. At –20°C (–4°F) most nickel-, lead- and lithium-based batteries stop functioning.


(Chrisb) #3

Okay… but temps in the 30s should be okay… which is the range we’re talking about, at least right now. We’ll dip into the low 20s or even teens at times but it’s pretty rare to go negative here.


(Cory S) #4

I have never really been able to rely on the tags. They screw with your mind. They will work great for a month, maybe two, then all of the sudden they glitch out all over the place. Then when you are on the brink of fed up they will work perfectly for a little bit.

I now only use mine as “backup” tags to our mobile presence setup.


(Andrew Urman) #5

For what its worth I keep a multi outside in Minneapolis. I’ve also kept 4 in a freezer for a month. The only limitation I’ve noticed is physical and is with alkaline batteries.


(Chrisb) #6

I guess that was part of what I was wondering… if the tech and/or batteries would run into issues at low temps. It appears that we need to be around zero or lower for this to be a real problem though, which is quite rare here, so I think I’ll be okay.

It definitely seems to be that my problems revolved around interference… from my router as well as from my SmartPower outlet. Things are getting back to normal the last couple of days.