REQUEST: Have lights turn off automatically after 30 seconds


(JB) #1

Hi, first post here! Hopefully this is the right section. I’m new to Home Automation and SmartThings, but having a blast learning everything so far. There are some incredibly smart people here (no pun intended)!

So, as the title says, I want to have my bedroom light turn off automatically, 30 seconds after I turn it on. Why? Because when I turn it on, I walk through the room to get to the bathroom (with it’s own light), so I don’t want to walk back to the entrance of the bedroom to turn the light off, and then walk back to the bathroom to shower or whatever. I have a single GE smart toggle switch controlling the bedroom light (Model # 12727).

Here’s the catch… my wife doesn’t. When she turns the light switch on, she wants the lights to stay on until she manually turns it back off. So I need a unique toggle or rule of some kind to only happen when I go in the room.

I’ve looked at “double tap”, “double duty”, and other smartapps, but they don’t appear to do what I’m trying to do. Any ideas? I’m a little familiar with CoRE, if that helps. Thanks!


( I hate Mondays) #2

Perhaps get a button? Like the Iris Button?


(JB) #3

I’m thinking an app like “double duty” or “off as toggle” would work if I knew how to change the app to start a timer and turn off the switch, or even toggle a CoRE piston. I did try to create a piston to do just that, but when I toggle off while the light is already off, it doesn’t do anything. Again, I’m new to all of this, so I may just not have built it correctly.


(JB) #4

That would definitely work, but I’d rather put that money toward a contact or motion sensor for another part of the house. Thanks for the idea though!


(Chris) #5

Unfortunately I don’t think the GE switches will work with either of those smartapps, as they don’t send status updates when they are already in that state (meaning if the switch is already off, and you press off again, there’s no additional event sent to ST). There may be other brand switches that work this way, but as far as I know the GE switches do not.

The Iris button is the best alternative that comes to mind, then you can differentiate between you pressing the button and your wife pressing the switch. I’m not sure how else you’d accomplish that.


(JB) #6

Yeah, that’s what I was afraid of. Oh well, it’s not a huge problem. Thanks!


(Chris) #7

Is your bedroom switch a dimmer? Maybe set something up so that if it’s 100% then don’t turn off, but if you turn it on and dim it slightly then it turns off after 30 seconds?


(Don) #8

I think your going to have a hard time doing this without some kind of dedicated trigger / switch/ button to let the system know you want this to happen. If you set it up to say if bedroom light is on then bathroom light comes on turn off bedroom. You will someday have a situation where that scenario will happen that you didn’t want the lights to turn off automatically. Like your wife is in the bedroom doing her thing and you walk into the bathroom you flip switch and she is now in the dark. Ahhh that’s not going to go over very well.

There is probably a bunch of way to do this just depends what triggers are available that smartthings can see.

You already mentioned this but possibly if you used this with a smart switch in the bathroom. So when you get to the bathroom switch you press off first to turn off bedroom light. Then on to turn on bathroom light? I have not used this so I don’t know how well it works.


(JB) #9

No, it’s just an on/off toggle, but that is an interesting idea with the dimmer. Although I wonder if that would create it’s own issues since most dimmers “remember” their previous value. In other words, if I set it to lower than 100% so it triggers a timer to turn off, then my wife walks in and turns it on, it will remember my value, and not go to 100%, thus triggering it to turn off again. Regardless, i don’t have a dimmer in that room. :slight_smile:


(JB) #10

I had thought about adding a smart switch the bathroom so I could do something similar to what you suggested, and I may in the future, but for now, I was trying to come up with a solution that didn’t require purchasing any extra hardware. I agree with everyone else’s comments here though, I don’t think I can make it happen without adding another device to the setup.


(Chris) #11

You could get around that by saying something like “If dimmer level < 100% then wait 25 seconds, set level to 100%, wait 5 seconds, turn off”. Then level automatically goes to 100% next time you turn it on. Of course, this would cause problems if you actually wanted it to stay dim…


(Don) #12

Another possible fix is an echo dot in your bathroom. Then when you get to bathroom you tell echo to turn off bedroom light.

You could then put a bluetooth speaker in the bathroom and you now have music in there too.
Or weather update, or what time is it?

you get the idea.


(JB) #13

You just gave me an idea. Google is pushing “Assistant” to all Android 6.0+ phones (including mine), so I could just tell my phone to turn off the light each time. Hmm… I’ll have to try that tonight. Thanks!

EDIT: I already have Google Home in my kitchen, and my SmartThings environment is connected to it, so in theory, telling my phone to turn off the light, should work the same as telling Google Home (which already works right now).


(Chris) #14

Do you use Tasker? You could get an NFC tag and write it with a Tasker action that would use Sharptools to issue the Turn Off command to your bedroom lights.


(Don) #15

Another option since your on android is sharptools. It will allow you to put a widget on your screen to toggle the light.

Or as previously mentioned tasker with some type of trigger for it.
I use tasker to turn lights off when I place my s7 on the wireless charger at night.


(JB) #16

Haven’t used Sharptools before, but I’m downloading/installing it now. I tried Tasker before, but it was a little too complex for what I was trying to do at that time. I’ve been using IFTTT and Stringify to create widget buttons for things like turning lights on/off, but those apps have limited capabilities and slow response times. Thanks for all the tips!


(Joshua Lyon (SharpTools.io Dashboard)) #17

Feel free to tag me @joshua_lyon if you need help with anything. I’m the developer of SharpTools and happy to help if I can! I would also mention that SmartThings has an awesome community and often times other community members might be even more helpful than the project lead/developer can be!


(YankeeJohnboy) #18

When you get to the point when you’re ready to add a couple of new pieces of hardware to the ST puzzle… I might try this:
Add a smart switch to the bathroom and a motion sensor in the bedroom. Create a piston that turns off the bedroom light when no motion is detected in the bedroom and bathroom light is on.


(JB) #19

I tested “Double Tap” last night using the bedroom light and the bedroom fan (2 separate switches). I set it up so if the light was on, and I “double tapped” on again, it would turn the fan on. IT WORKED, so that means what I am trying to do may be possible with the GE switch. The issue now is how to change the Action of the double tap. Instead of turning on/off a different switch, I want it to start a timer and then turn the light off.

So basically, I would want to “double tap” the light switch, which would turn the light on, start a 30 second timer, and turn the light off. Knowing that the GE switch works with “double tap”, does anyone have any ideas on how to do this?

Thanks.


(JB) #20

Wondering if @pranalli or anyone else knows how modify the “off as toggle” or “double tap” smartapp, to change the action? Instead of turning on/off a different switch, I want it to start a timer and then turn the same light off.