Smart blinds - Which to choose and do they play well with ST? [2021]

Hi,

I have been looking into buying motorized blinds. After a bit of research Somfy RTS seems the best choice. They should be working well with ST, but on the forum i mostly find people having problems with these.
Would Somfy be the best choice, and are there people who are using these without trouble?
Also i understand im going to need some kind of hub to change rts into zwave. Anyone with experience? Are they reliable? How is the range?

Any help would be very appreciated!

I prefer a ZWave shade instead of RTS. I got mine from ZebraBlinds. Mine are Graeber - which is just a brand name using Somfy / Springs Window Fashions / Bali ZWave motors.

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I think you get the best integration with smartthings with one of three choices:

One) zebra blinds. As @nathancu Mentioned, these are zwave Devices , Based on the motors from other brands but put together into a custom package that includes smartthings integration. So adding them to a smartthings system is pretty simple and they’ve had strong customer support. There’s a company representative, @ZebraBlinds , Who is active in this forum and can answer any questions. They also occasionally post coupons here. :sunglasses:

  1. Ikea fytur. These are probably the least expensive smart roller blinds you can find. Zigbee. In the US they only come in one gray color, and in the EU I think you have a choice of two colors. Limited sizes, although you can trim in some cases if you need an arrow or one. They work, they’re cheap, they work with SmartThings. Not much more you can say than that.
  1. Lutron Serena. These use their own proprietary frequency, but do integrate with smartthings using the Lutron SmartBridge. Like all Lutron products they are really well engineered, have a choice of a lot of different colors and fabrics, battery life is great, and they are expensive. They typically go on sale twice a year, but that’s usually only a 10 or 15% discount. I like these, but I never bought them because of the price.
  1. Other brands with their own smartthings integrations. In the last year, about a dozen window coverings brands have added their own smartthings integrations which are available through the app. Choose the + in the upper right, then add a device, then buy device type, and you will find them under sensors, then window treatments.

This includes Bali and leviosa, along with some smaller brands. I haven’t seen much forum discussion of any of these other than the ones I previously mentioned, but you can ask in the forum and put the brand name in the topic title and see if anybody’s used them. You’ll probably need to check the manufacturers for more details. Note that just because the brand is listed, it doesn’t mean that every model works: for example, the SOMFY integration there is only for the Z wave models.

So as of this writing, January 2021, there are quite a few different ones to choose from. :sunglasses:

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The only bad thing about ikea is there size, most definitely you would have to.cut the shade & top bar to fit your window. Your still spending a good bit of money for something that will not fit your window out of the box.

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Also, if you want to consider curtains instead of blinds, here’s a recent discussion that includes that option.

Ideas/Suggestions needed (shades or curtains?)

Thanks for the tag @JDRoberts

Those are pretty much all the options.

@John010 to answer your questions, Somfy RTS is actually pretty solid. Once setup we’ve rarely heard of ongoing issues. The range on the bridges is around 60ft line of sight. Lower with walls. That said the main issue I have with it personally is:

  1. Somfy accessories are quite expensive
  2. RTS is an old RF protocol. And the bridges such as the ZRTSI or Mylink just act as an intermediary that processes open, close, and favorite position commands. It doesn’t let you move the shade to any spot you want, nor, show the current position in real-time.

If you feel home automation will always be there in your future I would look at the additional options JD posted above as well as our z-wave shades.

If you are interested I would check out our thread here: 2018 - Current: Custom Graber Virtual Cord Z-wave+ Shades & Bali Autoview Z-wave+ Shades

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Thanks for the response. From all of the above Zebra seems the only one that would be suitable for me. Unfortunately im located in Europe…

IKEA should be available there. If you let us know why they don’t match your requirements, we might have some other suggestions for Europe. :thinking:

A lot has to be in custom sizes and designs. So i guess what i really am looking for is a blinds motor instead of the actual blinds. Somfy seems to offer everything that i need, plus they are supported by local guys who install things like that.
But im unsure about how well they actually work with ST. Its a big investment, plus its getting built into the house. So i do not want something that doesnt work well.

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