Just an update on trying to extend my range to the barn.
I took your advice and installed a leviton zwave outlet in the outside receptacle (I have an "in-use" weatherproof cover that keeps it protected from the elements). Did a few zwave repairs and sometimes it will work and i get signal in the barn but other times it doesnt. I dont like the leviton outlet, I have used one in the house before with crappy results but it was available at my local homedepot so i thought i would give it a try.
So i ordered a Zooz zen15 outlet and ill give that a try.