ST Hub in two story apartment


(Omojo) #1

Hello everyone, I just moved into an apartment which is two stories up. I intend to have my ST Hub in the living room on the ground floor. Now on the two floors up I intend to have in wall switches, motion sensors and door/window sensors. My question is, since there are two floors up, do I need to have two other ST hubs of this floor bringing the hubs to three because I’m thinking the sensors and switches on the floors up might not be able to communicate with the hud on the ground floor.

Please can anyone help me out with the best possible option to ensure that every devise gets proper wifi signal and communication.

Thanks


#2

Hi Laurence,
there are a few things to be aware of:
Some devices use WiFi and others will use zigbee or Z-Wave. Does your WiFi reach all sections of the apartment, and how have you laid this out? Do you have repeaters, if so what type? Powerline, cabled etc.
Chances are that if you only have a single WiFi source and it covers your whole apartment, you shouldnt have a problem with the other protocols as they actually tend to be a little better than WiFi, or at least in my experience. It would be useful letting us know what type of devices you are looking at using.

At the end of it, you shouldnt need more than one hub, you will at worst case need to install a few “range extenders” for the type of protocols you are using, be it Zigbee or Z-Wave.


(Omojo) #3

Hi Gilbert,
Thanks for your help. My WiFi doesn’t reach all sections of the house. With what you’ve pointed out, I’ll need to get repeaters to help create a WiFi mesh.
For the devices I’ll be using, they are Aeotec Nano switches, ST motion sensors, ST door/window sensors and Logitech Harmony Elite remote.
Could you recommend any repeater that will do a good job.
Thanks

GT1za gilbert@tunmer.co.za
March 1 |

Hi Laurence,
there are a few things to be aware of:
Some devices use WiFi and others will use zigbee or Z-Wave. Does your WiFi reach all sections of the apartment, and how have you laid this out? Do you have repeaters, if so what type? Powerline, cabled etc.
Chances are that if you only have a single WiFi source and it covers your whole apartment, you shouldnt have a problem with the other protocols as they actually tend to be a little better than WiFi, or at least in my experience. It would be useful letting us know what type of devices you are looking at using.

At the end of it, you shouldnt need more than one hub, you will at worst case need to install a few “range extenders” for the type of protocols you are using, be it Zigbee or Z-Wave.

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#4

With pleasure Laurence!

Creating a Wifi meshing going to be your easiest solution. If you like, you can even go with the smarthings connect system which will also then act as extenders for zigbee and z-wave protocols. You can find it here: https://www.amazon.com/Samsung-Connect-AC1300-System-SmartThings/dp/B06XSDFMND/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1519909186&sr=8-4&keywords=smartthings+connect&dpID=21aL0jiTRvL&preST=SX300_QL70&dpSrc=srch

This is the US version though, remember they function on different frequencies for US and EU. Make sure to check your zone for which frequency you are on!

Alternatively you can also get zigbee and z-wave repeaters, check amazon or vesternet.


#5

At the present time, the Samsung connect does not act as repeaters for Z wave and zigbee other than the one Device that is acting as the home automation hub. They have said that they hope to add this feature in the future, but it is not there yet.

Fortunately, almost all mains powered zigbee or Z wave devices will act as repeaters for their own protocol (zwave repeats only for zwave and zigbee repeats only for zigbee). So that includes Light switches, inwall relays, plug in sensors, plug in pocketsockets, etc. :sunglasses: Batterypowered Devices do not repeat.

The following FAQ on wireless range and repeaters should help. Start with post 11, then go back up to the top and read the whole thread. (This is a clickable link)


(Realy Living Dream) #6

You only need 1 hub, regardless of how big or how many levels. You should have always-on powered devices in every room. Whether they are in wall switches and outlets or plug-in models. ST hub can ( at this time) only handle 35 directly connected non-repeating Zigbee devices. Every hardwired (repeating) device adds another 10 device capacity.


#7

@RLDreams

Good advice, just a couple of technical updates to mention. :sunglasses:

The hub has 32 zigbee child slots. And it is up to each manufacturer to decide how many children a particular zigbee device will accept. Some can handle three, some seven-- it just varies a lot.

See the FAQ:

FAQ: 32 Zigbee direct connection device limit?


(Realy Living Dream) #8

Okay 32, not 30, I was close. My old-timers is getting worse.


#9

Thanks for clearing that up… I was actually about to buy the connect system spefically to replace my ubiquity mesh for the zigbee/z-wave repeating function… Man would I have been pissed to find out it wasnt so…


(Realy Living Dream) #10

Stick with the Ubiquiti for WiFi.
While Zigbee does use the 2.4Ghz frequency, and some Zigbee channels do overlap with WiFi channels, they DO NOT talk to each other.


#11

I’ll be honest, I skimmed so forgive he if I missed, but what’s driving the hub placement? I assume it’s the router location? My house is 2 floors and a basement with no cable entry on the first floor so my modem is on the second floor. Originally I had router on second floor but wifi in basement was spotty and I also had flaky ST response. I ended up getting a powerline adapter and kept modem on second floor but moved router to first floor and with it my hub. I now have solid wifi all over and flaky ST is much less. I think I lost theoretical internet speed that way, but the powerline is still faster than my internet service so in the end it didn’t have any impact. Were I going into this from scratch I would go the mesh route like others recommended, but since I had a good router, it was cheaper to just go to the power line route which was about 60 bucks. I also find well working powerline to be far more stable than wifi. I use a steam link and when I tried wifi between PC and router and steam link and router I had all sorts of problems. When I use powerline for the pc side of works great.

EDIT: One other note, my ST flakiness was zigbee only. Zwave was always solid. I attribute this to having lots of powered zwave devices and not as many zigbee.