Question about using a Smart Switch for garage lights

I want to have my garage lights turn on when the garage door goes up… I got a door/window sensor that is working well and now just need to get a switch that will turn the lights on…

My question is, I have two light switches for my garage lights… One in my garage and one in my house… If I replace the normal switch with a smartswitch in the garage, what happens if someone turns off the lights manually with the non-smart switch in the house?

Will that break any functionality?

Thanks much!

Bonus, can someone recommend a switch? I’m new to this and just have the hub, some smart bulbs, and a couple sensors so far…

If your garage light is currently operated by a 3-way switch setup (2 switches in 2 remote locations), then you need to replace both switches with a 3-way smart switch. For example, in my house, I changed all my 3-way switches out with GE Z-wave dimmers for the main load and used GE Add-on switches for the remote switches.

You will want to open your boxes and figure out how they are wired before you purchase the switches. You don’t want to buy a switch, open the box and then find out it won’t work.

Thanks a lot for the reply mate!

My inside switch is in a large 4 gang box… Like this, from the outside…

I’ll open both it and the garage one up and see how they are wired… Will the smartswitch’s fit in a box like that?

Some smart switches (Zooz and others) can operate in a 3-way setup without an add-on switch. You replace the existing “standard” switch and leave the 3-way switch in place.

1 Like

Yes, but the part that goes into the box on smart switches are larger. So the challenge sometimes becomes getting all the wires back in. I did replace a four-gang setup in my house with all smart switches. Had to do some special stuff to get the neutral wire to reach everything (as that is not used on regular switches).

GE makes a smart switch that uses the toggle so you can keep the steel plate. Also, Aeotec makes a micro-switch that fits behind your dumb switch. Put this in the main box and you can use both the main switch and dumb switch to operate it.

Agree with cisanchez77, Be sure and purchase a TOGGLE smartswitch not a PADDLE. Also good luck fitting it in with the rest

If you’d like us to verify if the Zooz toggle switch will work in your location, feel free to send us images from both boxes:

You’ll only need to replace one of the switches to automate the circuit when you buy the Zooz switch but you’ll have to change the connections in both boxes so if you have trouble reading the diagrams, just let us know and we’ll send you a step-by-step guide on how to wire them.

You guys are all awesome. Thanks for all the replies… Going to open up the switches this weekend and see what’s up…

If it is a 3-way switch then you want to make sure you know which wires are what. My stair light for example had the load at one switch and the hot at the other switch for some reason.

OK, I checked things out…

Wired as such:

Red - bottom left
White - bottom right
Black - top right

With switch on:
White/Red tests 11Vac
Black/Red tests 11 Vac
Black/white tests 0

Switch off
White/Red tests 120Vac
Black/Red tests 0
Black/white tests 120Vac


So with the info I posted, is there a solution that will work for me?