Extending Zigbee and Zwave

I have range issues.

So I've ordered a couple of Aeotec Zwave repeaters:

As for Zigbee, is this supported? Any other tips for extending Zigbee?
http://www.in-homeautomation.com/store/wireless-zigbee-pro-extender-v3.html

I've ordered this one: List of Good Zigbee Repeaters

but I like the look of the aerial on this device!

In general, you don't need special "repeater" devices: with rare exception, any mains-powered device acts as a repeater for its protocol. This includes Z-Wave and Zigbee in-wall switches, in-wall outlets, pocket sockets/smart plugs, USB-powered motion sensors (to my knowledge these only exist in Z-Wave anymore for some reason), and the like. Basically, it excludes battery-powered devices (and the rare powered device that doesn't, like the Hampton Bay Zigbee Fan Controller and Sengled smart bulbs, which in both cases I'd actually consdier a good thing--smart bulbs are problematic issue you can find on other threads if you want to know more).

So, if you have a need for one of those devices, you can avoid the need for dedicated devices like the Aeotec repeater. (And regardless, a lot of people would still probably opt for a smart plug instead--either device is going to take up an outlet, but at least the smart plug lets you get some use out of it if you need to. They do tend to be a bit bigger, however, and sometimes more expensive, so whatever meets your needs!)

Glad you found a Zigbee device that fits your needs, too! If you have non-standard Xiaomi Zigbee devices, you have to be a bit careful (the Trådfri outlet it looks like you got is one of few reported to work well). Peanut Plugs are pretty cheap and small and a favorite of some users (I avoid them because they almost seem too cheap--says me who also got the Ikea outlet), but pretty much anything you manage to find that's compatible with your power source should work (unlike Z-Wave where, as you discovered, you also have to worry about different frequencies between different regions).

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The IRIS plugs are the BEST zigbee repeaters I've seen so far...if you can still find them. model # 3210-L

Also, look at this Xbee thread:

IF you don't mind going this route...these really end up being amazing zigbee repeaters. However...using this software and mapping my network showed me how well the IRIS sockets were. I'd say you really don't need the XBEEs if you have a handful (depending on your house) of the IRIS plugs around. That being said I've found it very helpful to keep an XBEE attached to my home desktop just for mapping my network and checking things out occasionally. Plus they are really cheap.

My Zigbee network is by far much faster and more reliable than my zwave network.

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@jrfarrar You mention the XBEE as a source of checking your zigbee mesh. Could you explain a little on how you have it set up as far as being able to see the mesh? thanks

It's all in that thread and probably better explained than I can. But there is software that goes with the xbees that you use to program them. It also has a nice visual of how all the zigbee devices are connected to each other along with their alternative paths. The graphic of that is in the first post of that link near the bottom.

@jrfarrar Great! Thanks. I will go read the article above.

If you don't want to get an Xbee just to map your network, Hubitat also has an undocumented built-in tool that can do the same: <hubIP>/hub/zigbee/getChildAndRouteInfo. It's not a map, but if you have more than a few Zigbee devices, I don't find the XCTU maps usable, either, and usually switch it to table view anyway.

That being said, they take some work to set up and aren't the prettiest thing if placed in plain sight, but Xbees are fantastic repeaters. I've also found the 2018 ST outlet to be extremely attractive to many of my devices (I've seen it listed with up to 11 nodes connecting through it before, which is a lot for most repeaters if that's accurate; I think the Xbee can do something like 13-14, but many are limited to less than 8 or so.) But again, pretty much any mains-powered Zigbee device should work here.

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@bertabcd1234 I am using the URL you mentioned but I am curious as to why the zigbee bulbs I have sometimes show up and sometimes not in the list of child data devices? The basement has all peanuts and they all show in the list and one ERIA CT bulb in the office about 3 ft from the hub. The other 2 ERIA CT bulbs in the living room don't show in the list. The sengled bulbs are in the basement but I don't see them in the child data device list either. Is this normal behavior?

I'm not sure anyone knows. :laughing: I think staff have mentioned it only shows devices that have been active recently, so if you have battery-powered sensors and whatnot, it's normal to see them disappear. Child devices (at the top) are what is connected directly to your hub--useful to see if you're approaching the 32-end-device limit for directly-connected devices. Repeaters connected directly to the hub should always show in the neighbor table below. I don't think this includes repeaters that only route through other repeaters (or at least I'd assume so; all of mine route directly to the hub as far as I can tell). The routing table at the bottom shows what devices route through others, but I don't always see all of mine either, even ones that should be "active" recently like a motion sensor that is generating events at the very moment I load the page.

An Xbee will sometimes show a bit more than this (it does multiple scans in a row and continually updates the map/list). The bad thing is that it doesn't know Hubitat's device names, so it only shows you the MAC and DNI. I've also seen it miss things lately, even sensors that are clearly active as stated above (I had problems trying to determine the route of a Xiaomi device recently that was originally paired through an ST outlet and I wanted to see if it was still routing that way to help determine if this outlet works well with Xiaomi devices or not).

So...no good answer from me, at least for powered devices that don't appear. It is normal for others not to if they haven't communicated for a while.

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That is a very good idea if you use zwave locks on this platform, you will have a much better experience with less problems by adding these.

@bertabcd1234 Ok, thanks. That explains a lot, I appreciate it.

I have 7 Iris plugs scattered throughout the house. I paid $30 for all of them. It was a good buy.

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That device is specifically designed to work with a CONTROL 4 system, and very likely will not work with a Hubitat hub "out of the box":

thank you this was interesting