turn all on/off smart switches infinite loop?

I have two GE light switches in my kitchen connected to a smartthings hub. I created a routine to turn off both switches when either one of the switches is turned off. I made a separate routine to turn both switches on when either one is turned on. I found a problem when my kids were playing with both switches at the same time. When the switches are both actuated at the same time, they can get in an infinite loop where both switches turn on and off repeatedly. Does anyone know how to fix this?

Seriously… depending on the age/cognitive abilities of the kids, your simplest solution may be child locks on the light switches that the adults can use but the kids cannot. There are lots of styles and versions of these. (we use them at my house to remind guests not to turn off the switches that are powering smart bulbs)

Prices range from a dollar or two to much more depending on how fancy you want them to be.

As far as the software loop, we will need to see the exact routines and the specific model numbers of the switches that you are using to determine if there any options there. :sunglasses:


Also, In most cases, you don’t want to turn on the switch which is already on. Instead, you would have one switch mirror the other so that when switch A turns on, switch B turns on, rather than saying that when switch A turns on, turn on both switch A and switch B. It’s a subtle distinction, but an important one.

So you would still have two automations, but one would simply have switch A mirror switch B and the other would have switch B mirror switch A.

Which version of the SmartThings mobile app are you using, and are you using the official smart lights feature to tie the lights together?

1 Like

@JDRoberts you just made my entire day with this post… “depending on the age/cognitive abilities of the kids”

Context: My wife is an elementary school music teacher. Imagine all the fun conversations we have at home… :slight_smile:


Well, we just had a question in the forums last week from someone who wanted to be able to disable the light switch in their child’s room at certain hours of the day because the child is on the autism spectrum. So they did want her to be able to use the switch for part of the day, but not to obsessively turn the light on and off all night after everyone had gone to bed.

So it is a practical use case for some families. :sunglasses:

1 Like

Indeed - I just love the way you put it. I’m stealing the phrasing.

1 Like

I must have done something wrong. My wife triggered the infinite on/off loop today by just turning the lights off/on real fast. I created two routines, one to turn on all lights if any of the light switches are turned on, and another routine to turn off all the lights if any of the light switches are turned off… what am I missing?

You may want to look into using webCoRE. I use it for a similar situation.

Please post screenshots of the specific automations that you are using and we can take a look.

Also, please re-read my post #3 above.

I’m using SmartThings Version 2.16.1 Build Number 219306
I haven’t tried chaining the events like you suggested yet. I did make a webcore account- it’s something I wanted to do last time I was working on my “smart home” I think I’ll be able to get it to work in webcore because I can add more logic to filter as needed like checking if the lights have already been commanded

I don’t know what the smart lights feature is.
I created two “Routines”:
Turn off all Kitchen lights -> Automatically perform “Turn Off Kitchen Lights” when “something Turns On or Off” In there I have the three switches selected and Turns Off as the state.

I did the similar for Turn on all Kitchen lights

Yeah, that’s likely to loop because you have the same device on both sides of the rule (the “if” and the “then.”)

We still need to know which version of the app you are using. But here’s the page on smart lights. Make sure you choose the tab that matches the app version that you have.