Stormy/hot weather affecting presence sensor?!

presencesensor
presence

#1

I keep a presence/arrival sensor in the glove box of my car so when it arrives it triggers an “I’m Back” routine. This morning i realised that this routine had been executed during the night so I checked the logs and it turns out the car presence sensor had been going crazy, reporting leave/arrive events all night. I have seen this happen very occasionally before and so have set the “Minimum away time (minutes)” value in the “I’m Back” routine to 5 mins but last night’s behaviour was ridiculous. Some of the arrive events exceeded the 5 min threshold and therefore triggered the “I’m Back” routine.

So i could try and work around this problem but ideally the presence sensor wouldn’t teleport like this in the first place!

I checked the previous night’s log and there is only one leave/arrive event and this was short enough to not trigger the routine. So, the only thing i can think of that might have caused it was the fact that we had a pretty heavy thunder and lightning storm last night and it has been unusually warm. Can these sensors be affected by such environmental conditions?!


#2

Rain can diffuse an RF signal and so can really heavy humidity so it’s possible that if under normal weather conditions your presence sensor is just barely within range of your network that then on a very stormy day it might keep dropping off. It would be unusual, but possible.

The usual fix would be to add an additional Zigbee repeater like the SmartThings branded smart plug inside the garage on an interior wall. If you have one you can test with, you can try that.

(Remember that any time you change the permanent physical location of a zigbee device you need to do a “network heal” so all the neighbor tables get updated. Take any batteries out of the hub and then unplug it for at least 15 minutes. Leave all your others zigbee devices on power. Then when you put the hub back on power, all the network tables will get updated. This process can take a while to complete so you may not get the full advantage until the next day. Remember to do this again if you move the smart plug back inside the house, and anytime you either physically move a zigbee device to a new permanent location or add a new zigbee device to your system.)

You can also see the same problem if the battery is getting low in the presence sensor. Or if there is heavy Wi-Fi interference in the area.


#3

Thanks for this!

I have a SmartThings outlet repeater which is located right next to my hub unfortunately so it’s not really extending the range! However, i did move it there from another room a while ago so will try doing a network heal anyway. Is this stuff about Zigbee network best practices documented anywhere?

my hub is also located right next to my wi-fi router which by the sounds of it is not ideal? but then it needs to be plugged into the ethernet port on the back!

It might be worth investing in another power outlet repeater and plugging it in nearer the driveway, where the car is located, although they are a bit pricey :frowning:


#4

The Iris pocket sockets from Lowes are somewhat less expensive, and you can often find coupons for Lowes if you’re shopping online. Very popular in the community.

http://www.lowes.com/pd/Iris-120-Volt-White-Smart-Plug/999925330

As far as the Wi-Fi, it’s not the regular router you have to worry about, just the Wi-Fi router. Of course you may have a combination device. Ideally you should put the SmartThings hub at least 3 m away from the Wi-Fi router.


#5

JD can you recommend a pocket presence sensor? I have all but given up on my Life 360 and my Iphone presence sensor as means to detect when I arrive at home.

I guess I will be forced do buy the key fobs. Has Smart Home Monitor reliability improved at all? I have not been on the boards lately.


#6

Different things work for different people. :sunglasses: The SmartThings branded presence sensor didn’t work at my house, but I’ve had good results with Ibeacons.


(Andrea Bianco) #7

I had the motion sensor bug last night as well… maybe something in / on ST … it would not stop. I get a few false triggers once in a while but last night was out of control ! The sensor never left the house ! I listened to the garage door go up and down for hours ArRRRRRR

Glad to say at 9:39pm tonight no false alarms… it is has it’s own demons I am convinced.

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#8

Definitely talk to support–there are things they can see from their side that might help.

Have you increased the use of WiFi or boost the signal strength at all at your house recently?

I had similar problems at my house and I’m pretty sure the problem is that one of my neighbors has boosted wifi and a kid who gets home from school around 330 because every weekday between 330 and 4 my arrival sensor goes absolutely bananas. We tried a lot of things but never could get it to settle down so I switched over to using Ibeacons. So I definitely know how frustrating it can be.

For now, I would take the arrival sensor off of the rule that opens the garage door. You can still check the logs every morning to see if it’s been bouncing.


(Andrea Bianco) #9

PM me when you have a minute… :slight_smile: