"Best" Lighting Solution

I think he means by replace active z-wave routers with Lutron leaving dead spots. Not RF interference.

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Oh.. that's a foreign thought to me :smiley: :smiley: retiring a working ZWave device?? Never crossed my mind!!

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Yes, that's what I meant. I have GE Z-Wave switches in the carport, by the front door, and by the back doors. Those are all areas where (I think) I benefit from the repeater capability. If I change those out for Lutron switches, I am worried I might need to put something else in to serve as a repeater in those areas.

Why replace those? Just use Lutron on the additional lights your wife want to automate. I have mix of device all controlled by HE, zwave, zigbee, Lutron, Hue, network. Spread the love, spread the bandwidth :slight_smile:

I am worried about all the different styles of switches. I don't think the WAF will be very high if we have different kinds of switches that work differently scattered around the house. I would think it would complicate management and trouble-shooting (although maybe this wouldn't be a big deal).

And it would probably set my OCD instincts off from the aesthetic aspect . . .

I was a little worried about this originally as well. In my case, for some inexplicable reason, my wife hasn't complained at all about a combination of traditional toggle switches and newer decora style switches. When I do add a smart decora style switch to a box, I replace all of the dumb switches with new inexpensive dumb decora switches as well. I am also slowly switching the house from old almond switches to white switches (which she prefers!). The Lutron Pico's fit right in with the decora switches, which she prefers to handheld remotes or touchscreens.

If you survey the smart switch market, decora style really is where the momentum is in the USA. No reason to fight against the mainstream. :slight_smile:

Not suffering from OCD, I can empathize, but sorry I cannot relate.
However, you may want to factor in eventual resale value of your home. Having a reliable home automation system already installed is good for boosting the sale value of your home.

Having a Z-Wave system that needs repeaters and babying will be a headache for the new owner. Imagine your OCD with the image of the new owner throwing all those relatively new Z-Wave outlets in the trash to put in plain old Decora style on/off switches because they don't like the older toggle style switches.

Now imagine the excitement from the agents selling your home someday with trouble-free modern Lutron Ceséta switches that the new owner will never even consider replacing because they are stylish and just work.

You must be in sales . . . :slight_smile:


Aren't we all? DId you not have to "Sell" your wife on the smart home or was she pushing you to automate what was once a simple light switch? :wink:

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I can just feel the jinx coming on but . . .

I follow your point. One of the big selling points is (I think) that Lutron Caseta is more likely to be supported by a professional electrician that whatever I cobble together with Hubitat, Google Home, Z-Wave, Zigbee, etc. While I don't care about that, I think that would be of value to another homeowner.

I have not had problems with devices "falling off the network", either Zigbee or Z-Wave. The only time I have had to "mess" with devices is when I switched from SmartThings to Hubitat. On SmartThings I did have devices randomly turning on and off from time to time but I just attributed that to demonic possession. Also, I won't be able to get rid of the Zigbee and/or Z-Wave devices - I will still have door/window sensors, motion sensors, water sensors, etc. So I still need to make sure those respective networks are operational as they are an integral part of the automation.

I would think, if most of my wall switches were Z-Wave, that would result in a pretty strong mesh . . . are others finding that isn't true?

I want to apologize for occasionally talking (or posting) in circles. I want to thank you all for the suggestions, comments and discussion. I really needed this to help me think it through (and I'm still not there yet, as you may be able to see).

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The key to a smart home system that the average home buyer wants is the KISS principal.

  • Security
  • Alexa and/or Google Home
  • HomeKit/Siri
  • 99% trouble-free lights

If, or when I sell this house someday, most of this stuff will come out depending on where we are with automation technology at that point. I will probably leave behind the Lutron Connected Bulb Remotes, because they just need a new battery every 3 years. They're otherwise worry free unless you change the bulb they're paired to, but I would just leave the relatively simple procedure to reset and re-pair them with the new owner.

All Insteon will be removed unless there is an integrated HE solution at the time of sale. Hue and/or Lution will remain and I will install the home automation gear in a proper RF transparent in-wall cabinet. The chances of the next buyer wanting to ever re-pair or re-join a device is slim to none.

My alarm system will stay with the house because it uses its own proprietary sensors and they never need re-pairing, just batteries.

One thing to consider with caseta dimmers and switches (and picos) is it is obvious what to do, top button on, bottom button off. Middle up and down dim up and down.

Having sold a couple houses, watching people not understand "smart dimmers" led me down the path to caseta. It just works.

Next to toggles, it also makes sense considering they aren't really decora rocker switches, but 2-5 button controllers.


Be aware, however, that you will not be able to set-up a new non-Pro Smart Bridge. Info is in this post


In order to receive a necessary firmware update required for future operation, all first-generation Lutron Connect Bridges (model # CONNECT-BDG-1) must be connected to the internet prior to May 25th, 2018

I ran into this issue after purchasing a non-Pro bridge on ebay several months ago and waiting until a couple of weeks ago to set it up. Lutron support was great and sent me a Smart Bridge Pro at no cost/no questions asked along with a prepaid return shipping label for the old one.

I apologize for jumping in... getting ready to start automating our new house (new to HE, but not home automation) and am trying to determine the best lighting option available for me (felt like I should jump into this thread vs starting another one... been lurking around here for a few weeks now)

I’ve read (I believe on Amazon) that one issue with Caseta switches is that they ramp to 100% when you turn them on - they don’t ramp to last level. Is that true? Seems like that would be a deal killer for many people so it surprises me... trying to understand before I start a big investment in these.

Is there a “best” lighting option... if you were to do it all over again - what would you use? (I prefer to pick a solution and stick with it for consistency). The HomeSeer switch seems like a good option with the customizable LED indicators... is there something better? Caseta seems to get high marks but the 100% issue has caused me to pause.

Casetas do not ramp to 100%. The return to the previously set level when you issue an "On" command. Casetas also respond well to the duration in the set level command, which is not true of all other devices, allowing you to control the ramp rate when you change the level.

Caseta's do turn on to 100% they do not restore previously set level on the dimmer itself.

Sending a setLevel it will ramp to that level via hubitat

Sending an on will ramp to previous level in state also via hubitat.

Thanks, so I’m clear, if a user hits the on button on the switch, it will ramp/switch to 100%? The only way to avoid is by using the automation system to turn on the lights?

If you use an in-wall dimmer or a lamp module, the top button on the device will default to 100% on. However, that is not true of Pico remotes which can be customized to whatever you want. You can press and hold the up button on the device and begin brightening the light from 0%, if it is off.
As a side note, Caseta devices do require the Pro Hub, not just the regular Caseta hub.

So this is the crux here. If you have lighting that needs an in-wall dimmer, you either have to go with a system that supports hardware control over the dimmer on level and ramp rate, or you have to deal with that lack of control at the switch.

As @Ryan780 points out, you can do that with a Pico, but to @patrick's point, it's HE doing that, not the hardware, So if you need to control lights from a dimmer instead of just the lights themselves, you would have to have both a Caséta dimmer and a Pico for every light.

There are creative solutions of course, but they're not for everyone. One in particular that comes to mind is something I recall Seth Johnson mentioning on Hometech.fm
Seth is a Control4 guy, and what he did was to install some dimmers up at the top of his kitchen cabinet if I remember correctly. Then he used Control 4 keypads where the light switch would be. So essentially the same thing. Digitally controlling an outlet with a remote. For him, this worked because he was doing the house wiring :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Insteon does have full control over the ramp rate and on level in hardware, but you have to be prepared for the extra steps and components needed to integrate it with Hubitat. Support is community driven. Not official at this time.

If you have control over the fixtures and the lighting used, I would personally go with Hue bridge(s) for control over the lights themselves and Picos throughout for the control. That will give you maximum control. If you need to have a light that cannot take smart bulbs, I would do what @mike.maxwell has done and use Z-Wave micro modules. I think he has either the Aeon Micro or the Mini modules. Can't remember which, and he controls them with Pico remotes.

Only problem with Picos and Hue's....no fallback if your hub is suddenly on the Fritz. Personally, I need to have a backup in case my hub dies. I don't want to be walking around with a flashlight till i get the problem solved. That's why I have Casetas but then have motions sensors. So, i'm not using any buttons very much at all anyway, except to dim or brighten.