Upgrading new home: Need to find switches to use with Hue bulbs / no actual power switching

I’ve just purchased a new home, and need to replace all of the wall switches to work with my Hue bulbs. As we know, these bulbs want power all the time and to be controlled via the hue hub. It seems to me that I could get switches that talk to the SmartThings hub and then have that talk to Hue.

What I need, though, are switches that can look and feel and work just like a standard switch, but never actually controls the power/load to the light. It always gives the light power.

This is a deal-breaker, as my fiancee and the kids want the wall switch to work just like a standard wall switch, and I’m committed to making that happen. No putting on kid locks and using a different switch. No taking out switches and putting on a plate and a new stick-on controller. I need to find an in-wall solution.

Further, what would be awesome would be in-wall solutions for scene control. Something with 4 or 5 buttons that can do different commands to SmartThings that could then trigger a scene on the Hue hub.

Such a solution MUST exist, but I’m just not seeing it…

What about using this as an opportunity to change to smart switches instead of hue bulbs?

It’s a good question, which is probably why it gets asked three or four times a month in the forums. :wink:

To keep from having to retype the answer every time, there is a community FAQ. Take a look at this (this is a clickable link) and it should answer all your questions. Then if you still want to brainstorm anything specific to your own set up, just go ahead and ask here. But first read the FAQ. We’ll wait. :sunglasses::level_slider::bulb:

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I have 40 hue bulbs. That’s an investment I’m not prepared to abandon :wink:

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Oh, and as far as the scene controller with buttons, yeah, that one is also a good question. Which also gets asked once or twice a month. :sunglasses: Try the following thread:

So I read that FAQ. If it answers my question, I don’t see it.

Honestly, I can’t make heads or tails of the FAQ. Some of the answers say “get one of these,” but “one of these” is a class of device that I don’t understand. Make/model would answer my question :wink:

Post 54. There’s an Amazon link and everything. :sunglasses:

Also definitely read this thread from last week. It’s short and simple and discusses the button control option.

I see. So one of these - https://www.amazon.com/Gocontrol-Z-Wave-3-Way-Accessory-Switch/dp/B00EAY3K5Y - would simply send the command to the hub, and the rest is up to me. THAT makes sense.

And I’d just hard-wire the light fixture with power.

Only downside, then, is in a power interruption, all the lights go on. But I could easily write myself some software on my home control computer that polls the state of the Hue bulbs in case of a power cycle and sends commands to reset them.

NOW it starts to make sense. And I’ll look into those scene controllers.

Thanks!

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Yep. And as far as device classes go, that particular device is

an auxiliary switch that doesn’t connect to the load and has its own radio so it can communicate directly to the hub

There are a couple of different models that do this, but the linear/Gocontrol is usually the easiest to find. Cooper also makes one, and I think so does evolve.

Auxiliary switches that don’t have their own radio, like the GE brand, won’t work because they can’t talk to the hub. They are intended to be connected to their master switches with a physical traveler wire, so all they can do is signal the Master switch.

You will also want to set up your rules so that you turn the switch off if the bulb turns off in any other way, like just from the app, so they stay in sync.

BTW, you’re right about that FAQ: it’s two years old and probably needs to be condensed down and re-written. Some day…:sunglasses:

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I had the same question that you have…I chose to go with these…

These are real actual smart switches (not Aux switches) but when I wire them up I just connect both the line and load to the line side of the switch (basically giving power to my hue lights all the time). The advantage with these is that they support a double-tap feature which I’m using in webCoRE to control scenes (just like your request). I’ve installed about 12 of them now and I’m very happy with the results. Not every room in my house has hue bulbs, so where I don’t I’m using these same switches and getting the same “look and feel” of the light switches and also getting the ability to control the dumb lights in those rooms now too.

One of my big issues with the GoControl is that they have pigtails to attach to them and in some locations in my house I have 4 gang boxes and trying to squeeze all those wires with the associated wire connectors would have been a real challenge. The GE switches just wire in from the back.

Here’s my thread where I weigh my options and plot my course…I also talk about how I got it to work once I finished the installation so that the lights can turn on the switches and vice-versa.

RunLessWire offers the Click for Philips Hue switches that work directly with the Hue hub: https://runlesswire.com/click_philips_hue/

What would it take to support these with the SmartThings hub?

It depends on the zigbee channel that your hub is using. There is already a discussion topic for that particular model in the forum:

Also, since this thread was started there is a new community FAQ on switches to use with smart bulbs which covers these as well as other options : ( The topic title is a clickable link)