Which zwave plugs to start buying? (2019)

Coming over from Iris, and currently have the ADT SmartThings panel. I need to have four or five more smart plugs or outlets. I have two Iris 3210-L plugs, and successfully have them paired as an outlet and zwave repeater. Should I keep trying to find those, even though they’re selling for $30+ each? Or is there a better option to get the best zwave signal repeated through my house?

My biggest thing is that occasionally my Iris linear garage door opener and kwikset lock get disconnected, so I want to get the best and strongest signal to the back of my house. I have one 3210-L plug located within 8ft of the lock.

Wasn’t sure if I should be buying “Zwave Plus” outlets/plugs if they are improved over the Iris plugs?

Thanks for the help, this forum has been awesome for me to learn about transitioning to smartthings.

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At this point, you should always get zwave plus devices unless there is a really really good sale on the Z wave classic. The most obvious advantages of zwave plus are longer range for all devices and better battery life for the battery powered devices. But there are other technical advantages as well, including “network wide inclusion” which makes it easier to pair devices which are further away and also somewhat improves routing efficiency.

After that, it’s just a matter of which features you want.

Check the specs carefully for max load

In the US, most jurisdictions require that in wall receptacles support up to 15 A. However, many plug-in pocket socket only support 10 A, and That’s usually the total load, so split among two sockets if they have two.

It’s very important to pay attention to this or you can create a fire hazard.

If the pocket socket will be in a location like on a kitchen counter or a bathroom counter where people may typically plug-in something of a higher load like a blender or a hairdryer, make sure you choose a pocket socket which can handle a higher load.

If it’s just going to be used for a table lamp, the lower load will usually be fine.

Energy Monitoring isn’t always a good idea

As I’ve mentioned elsewhere, I do not recommend using mesh protocol devices for real-time energy monitoring Of individual devices. You will increase the traffic on your network by hundreds of times and that can create lag for every zwave device you have. It’s OK if you have the device set to only report a couple of times a day and you are just looking at long-term energy uses. But if you really want real time energy monitoring, look for a Wi-Fi device instead.

How Many Sockets?

Other features which differ by model include the number of sockets, whether the sockets can be controlled individually or only in unison, and whether there is an additional USB charging port. (That’s unlikely to be controllable, but it can be convenient to have.)

Dimmable or not?

There are only a few Z wave pocket sockets which are dimmable because of fear that people will plug a small appliance into them, but there are a couple if you want one of those for a table lamp.

Other features

And of course the size, shape, and price can vary quite a bit as well. “Stackable” pocketsockets allow you to plug one each into both outlets of the in wall receptacle. Other designs may either partially cover the second outlet or will only work in the top or bottom outlet if you want to leave the other one clear. The socket may be on the bottom, the side, or the front.

Also, many of the newer models have an LED indicator which might be too bright for a bedroom. Check the manual to see if there is a parameter to turn this off all together if you don’t like it. :bulb:

And some have a very visible on/off button. This can be helpful when pairing, but is usually a bad idea if you have kids who tend to turn it off with the button. :scream:

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Finally, make Sure the device can support “beaming” if it will be the closest Z wave repeating device to a zwave smart lock. You can look at the conformance statement posted at the Z wave alliance site for any device to see if beaming is supported.


Some brand notes

Zooz has some interesting designs and are generally among the lowest price for zwave devices. This is the house brand for Thesmartesthouse.com and they have a representative who is very active in these forums if you have any questions.

Their newest pocketsocket uses the S2 security protocol and is quite popular.

Inovelli is another low-cost line with interesting features, but they are in the middle of switching over to a new factory and their new line will not be released until later in the spring.

There are lots of other brands as well, so you will have a lot of choices. :sunglasses:

(And a terminology note: in this forum, we usually call the plug-in devices “pocketsockets“ to distinguish them from the in wall receptacles as well as light switches and in-line micros.)

@TheSmartestHouse @Eric_Inovelli


Thanks for the tag @JDRoberts and as usual, for a great contribution!

@Spooky_pitboss feel free to get in touch with us for any product-specific questions. And just to add to what JD mentioned about electrical ratings (max power, etc), if you do have any heavier appliances like split AC units, sump pumps, or humidifiers, we recommend looking into the ZEN15 Power Switch (you can adjust the amount of power reports it sends for energy monitoring in advanced settings or disable them altogether).

Good luck with the project!


Awesome, I really appreciate the info!

Just to clarify, anything that is zwave plus, automatically works as a range extender/repeater is it’s listed as supporting the beaming function?

Any zwave device which is not battery-powered should act as a zwave repeater except for a few safety devices like smoke detectors.

Beaming is a separate feature which has to do with acting like an answering machine for a lock.


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Will do, I appreciate it!

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Quick question, when adding a zwave plus plug that will be farthest from the hub to attempt to get a stringer signal to a garage, is it best to :

Pair the device close to the hub, THEN move it to it’s final intended spot? Or pair the device in it’s intended spot even it’s it’s far from the hub?

I always pair in place and then perform a z-wave repair afterwards (has to be done in the Classic app).

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