Zwave status

I have a ecobee battery powered gate switch connected to Smartthings. It’s on the far side of my house but very close to several plugged in zwave devices further away from the hub on the side of the house by the gate, which I assume could be used as a repeater.

Out in the street it works fine. As I approach the house its performance is flaky until it doesn’t work about a foot away from the gate :frowning:. As a test I put another zwave on an extension cord and put out on the grass, ran several zwave repairs but the performance is the same. It’s as if it won’t use the repeaters. The “recent activity” log also sows weird info (took picture after a couple of tries and the same results)

When I look at the “recent activity” on the device right as it stops working it says:
Checking connection
Connection Healthy
(Repeats 3 times)

If I exit out of the app and come back in looking at recent activity it no longer shows that and instead says:
Socket is unhealthy (4 times)
Received new client information
Registering with client connect
Registered with client connect
… redoes this each time I come back in and look at the status until I take the device closer and get it connected.

Is this just a range issue. Any ideas on why it won’t use the repeater? Can’t be 5 hops away as the other plugged in ones have more obstacles/walls and would have to use zwave hops through the house.

I tried a zigbee Smartthings multipurpose sensor and it runs out of signal about a foot away as well.