Retrofit 3-way

Here’s the list of battery-operated buttons and switches.

Most of these would work fine as long as your SmartThings hub was working because the battery operated device sends a message to the hub and the hub then sends a message to the master.

However, because this involves stairs and you really want to be able to turn the lights on even if your hub is not working, i’m going to suggest that you consider two Cooper aspire switches for your set up. A wired master at the bottom of the stairs and a battery operated aux at the top. (That’s the cooper 9500 as the battery operated device.)

These two switches can be set up to talk directly to each other using Z wave Association, although you will require one additional device, Z wave Aeotec minimote to make the association in a one time set up. The minimote itself is a very popular handheld remote and you can use it as a regular button remote independent of using it as an association tool. If you shop around you should be able to find a minimote for about $20.

Aeotec minimote

You will not need the Cooper controller, that’s for if you are not using the smart things hub.

Anyway, that way the switch at the top of the stairs will still work even if your hub is off-line. It does mean you have to buy the extra device, but I think it’s worth it in this case.

Shop around for the cooper aspire 9500 as well, but prices vary a lot on this one. And sometimes a place that has the cheapest minimote has the most expensive 9500.

Cooper 9500, battery powered “anywhere” switch