Aeotec Range Extender 7: More Trouble Than it Was Worth

Installed a coupe of Aeotec Range Extender 7 repeaters over a year ago in the hopes of fixing issues with my Schlage Dock lock and garage door opener. They didn't help. When I revisited the problem with them just a week or two ago, they now work fine. An update to Hubitat must have fixed it. The repeaters never appeared as a hop in the Z-Wave routes.

I had recently ran a Z-Wave repair. It reported most of my devices in error in spite of the fact they all work fine. One of the repeaters didn't even have a route. The listing just showed "01 -", no end node.

Since they didn't appear to being used, I removed both of them by doing a Z-Wave exclude. When I reran the Z-Wave repair, the report came up clean, no errors. That's the first time that has ever happened.

When I initially installed them, I think I set up S-2 security as it asked me to enter a code. From what I've read, I don't think Hubitat supported it at the time. They might work better if I reinstalled them. Given my mesh is working fine, I'm not going to mess with it. I have a small house and most every device connects directly to the hub. Just passing this along in case other people are having the same problem.

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I've had better luck with the Ring V2 extenders than I did with Aeotec. Some people have had the opposite experience. the C7 has always support s2 because it's native to the 700 series chip. I would have recommended skipping security all together. I would leave only door locks and garage doors with security. Glad your mesh is good though. How does your z-wave details page look?

I was going to say the details page looked fine. It does for the most part. I did notice my Schlage lock has no security listed. I thought I had set it up. Here's the page:

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I have six Aeotec 7 range extenders. Some of them were active participants in my mesh, others were not. Once by one, I excluded the devices, reset them to factory, re-included them without security and then updated them to the latest firmware. While the devices were off line during the update, the devices that previously routed through the Range Extenders found other routes. Some now go directly to the hub. A couple of other are now routine through other mains powered devices such as the valve controller on my water cutoff valve.

I also have a Ring range extender, but nothing routes through that either.

After the recent update to the Z-wave firmware in Hubitat, nearly all my devices are now going direct to the hub. If the direct connection is lost, there are multiple alternatives available.

I've also have an Aeotec 7 Repeater. When I first got it, I moved it all over the house trying to find the "sweet spot" where it will actually be used as a repeater. After one day it was repeating. But consistently by the 2nd day it was not. It might strengthen your mesh a bit, but I've given up trying to make the thing work as a repeater.

I have 4 RE7s - 3 are consistently repeating well for neighboring devices. The 4th is placed more for backup purposes, so I'm not surprised nothing is going through it.

But it took a long time (like over a year since I bought them) for them to really come alive -- the last couple Aeotec firmwares helped spark them, but the most recent z-wave SDK update really seemed to help spur them to life.

Perhaps that's all coincidental, but my RE7s are absolutely carrying the repeater load for my ZW mesh these days. Devices that used to route through other powered ZW stuff (like outlets) now all go thru my RE7s instead.

My RE7s are all paired "None" security FWIW.

I think for repeaters to really play their optimal role in a mesh, you would need to start from scratch. First install your repeaters and pair them to Hubitat. Only then should you start pairing other devices.

Most of us (including me) probably do it the other way around. We start adding devices to Hubitat and then realize that our mesh is not as solid as we want it to be. Thus, we then purchase the repeaters and add them to the mesh as an afterthought.
As long as the messages are transmitted and received, it really does not matter how they are routed. Having repeaters through which messages are not currently being routed may be unnecessary, but they are good insurance in the event something else goes down.


From what I read, a C7 will rearrange the mesh nightly to find the best paths. So in theory, adding a repeater last should eventually be in the mix.

It's definitely gotten better but still not quite there. I just checked my 2 repeaters - a Ring (S2) and Aeotec7 (no security + latest firmware) - interestingly Aeotec7 is repeating to a motion sensor in my garage as I had hoped. The Ring extender has nothing repeating through it sadly but is still useful as a power outage detector.

I find when putting a repeater in place for a specific device I need to route, I exclude then factory reset the device then re pair it. This seems to "usually" knock it into the repeater I want. I think this is due to the way z-wave caches it's routes (I could be wrong in my analysis) but this usually works for me.


Yes that's a good strategy - I should have mentioned that's what I did for my garage device.

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I bought an Aeotec RE 6 in 2018, and it did nothing, so I foolishly gave them more money and bought 2 more RE 7s in 2021, with the hopes that THESE might work with my Hubitat C7.

The argument that won me over was that while other wall switches can be repeaters, they will be installed in boxes next to metal, where this will be out in the open. Also, THIS is a dedicated repeater, so it's gonna have better antennas oriented for the given task. No, no, and no!!!!

None of my 3 repeaters EVER did much of anything. I think ONE device ever used them in a route, and it was a device that didn't need to, and was not one of my target (longer distance) devices. They did NOTHING to improve the connections to my farthest zwave devices.

I did many of the things suggested here. Including building my network by including the Range Extenders early. NOTHING wants to connect through these things.

Just very frustrating, and a waste of time, effort, and money. In the end, I upgraded my Hubitat to a C8, and that fixed most of my connection problems. I also upgraded all the most distant switches to Zwave Plus. Those efforts worked, these repeaters did not.

I have several Aeotec 7 Range Extenders. I updated all off them to the most recent firmware. I also have a couple of Ring range extenders. A few other devices like my Aeotec and Ecolink chimes also serve as repeaters along with a three Zooz Zen 15 outlets.

When I was using my C7 hub, several of the Z-wave repeaters were in use, especially reaching devices in the basement, garage, and some outdoor sensors. After migrating to the C8, nearly all my Z-wave devices are connecting directly with the hub with the exception of the outdoor motion sensors that are blocked from line of sight by a masonry chimney. Even my Schlage door lock which was always routed through a repeater is now direct. It only connects at 40 kbps, but that is how it is designed.

The new 800 series chipset in the C8 hubs have essentially eliminated the need for Z-wave repeaters. That more than pays for the added cost of the hub for those just getting started with Hubitat. However, since I already invested in the repeaters/range extenders, I do not plan on removing them.


Yep, same here. I've long had several Aeotec RE7s strategically placed, and on my C7, they each acted as a repeater at various times (so I know they all worked).

On my C8, everything's now connecting direct, but I plan to leave my RE7s in-place -- they're aren't hurting anything and they're there in case they're needed in the future.

If I had to do it all over again, I'd probably go with more/all Ring v2s instead -- they additionally give you the power-loss alert option. Downside is they are physically bigger.

I have one Ring v2 now, and I know it would be smarter to have at least one more to better confirm a power loss (vs single device failure), but I have no plans to invest in any more extenders.