GE Fan Controls Not Working Properly

I'm awake at 1am, and I'm quite annoyed, but I am trying to be tolerant. One of the reasons I supported Hubitat was due to the "upgrade at your OWN pace, not ST's pace" mantra. Time and time again over the past year has this proved to be false.

When there are major driver overhauls, (e.g. GE Motion Dimmer changes last year, or the recent GE Fan Control changes, or RM 2.5) it screws up my devices or automations when I haven't even updated my hub. This drives me nuts, because I repeatedly get things working properly and I'd like them to stay that way. So then I am FORCED to do an update to see if it might fix things (in spite of not wanting to take a full update for fear of breaking other crap, or being forced to rewrite things I don't want to).

This is a MAJOR annoyance. At least with ST, the fix would be automatically pushed when available without my having to troubleshoot something I didn't break in the first place.

RANT aside, the GE Fan Control changes have completely FVCKED control of my fan to the point where my wife is pissed. This ain't a good thing. Most of us here abide by the WAF principle.

The fan cannot be controlled from anywhere except the switch.

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I can attest to the fact that I'm seeing similar, but also slightly different behavior.

Even going in and re-saving the device sometimes didn't help, but I couldn't control some of my GE Fan devices at first until I manually went to the wall and turned it on. It's almost like the driver data needed to be refreshed by a manual operation of the fan.

Additionally, this update has completely borked Alexa control of the fans as well - I used to be able (with the 'dimmer' implementation) to tell Alexa to set the fan to 'low' or 'high' (still had to use a numeric % like '55%' for medium), but, at least it was consistent. Also, while I know you had to write a single driver for 3 or 5-speed fan control, having the extra 'medium-low' and 'medium-high' options for those of us with just 3-speed fans is not a good UI design.

Oh, and also, Alexa is now into her '[fan name] is not responding', even when the command has successfully processed, so something strange is going on there...

While I applaud the approach here of giving us more flexibility and options, I agree with @MEarly here - testing this with not only Rule Machine, but also the Alexa app, as well as validating against 3 and 5-speed fan configurations would have been appreciated. :slight_smile:

Hopefully a point fix can be pushed soon that addresses these things. Thanks!

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For the OP, I've never seen a change force me to update... The only kinds of changes I would think that would fall in that category are back end Google home or Amazon Alexa changes. If they upgrade a driver, that by itself cannot make the device stop working on a previous release... That's just not how it works.

I've tested the updated driver on five fans, and it works like I would expect on all five of my fans. I will say, though, one thing I had to do after switching to the inbox driver was do a set speed command to either low medium or high.

As the GE hardware only supports 3 speeds, medium low and medium high don't do anything distinct on the actual fan - in the driver medium-low is mapped to low, and medium-high is mapped to medium. That's to be expected though.

To the second post, the set level command was removed from the driver. This was (presumably) done on purpose to make external systems like Google home and Amazon Alexa detect the device as a fan instead of a dimmer. The side effect of that though is that you cannot set the fan to a % anymore.

If you absolutely need the set level by percent function you can use my current user driver for the fan control. It's marked as deprecated, but it will work. If people continue to use my user driver, I will make a new version that rips out the configurable fan speed portion that doesn't work, to reduce confusion.

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Thanks @JasonJoel.

Forgive my grumpy 1 am post. Long day.

I will give some level-headed time to trouble-shooting this morning to try to determine what's going on. Hopefully, some rest and daylight will shine some light on the situation.

I have 2 additional devices that don't get much use, and I'll see if I can repeat the behavior with them.

(And by "FORCED", I meant that my first attempt to solve any "new" issue is to simply do an update to see if recent changes addressed said issue. Because technically, the issues could've existed in my current patch, but were affected, as you said by some cloud'ish change that I am ignorant to.)

Side note: It would probably help if I kept more up-to-date with changes and patch notes, but I can't be arsed since I'm mostly in maintenance mode at this point, and not proactive with potentially annoying issues.

There are definitely some changes in 2.0.9 regarding Fan Devices. I would recommend anyone impacted by these changes revert back to 2.0.8 until these issues are resolved. I believe the driver for the GE Fan controller was modified to remove the 'Dimmer' capability.

Another user noticed that the native Button Controllers App does not yet support the Fan Capability. A new version of Button Controllers has been promised that will address this issue.

I assumed that was on purpose to make Google Home detect it as a fan instead of dimmer... Could be wrong, though.

Of course even if on purpose, it seems to break how it works in Alexa... lol. I might need to resurrect my user driver after all. :smile:

EDIT: Mike confirmed in another thread that the dimmer capability was removed on purpose. He also mentioned he would look into the new driver not working as expected with Alexa.


setLevel and the Switch Level capability will be added back in to the GE fan driver, this will be in the next hotfix for 2.0.9, I don't know when we expect to release that or if any other issues are pending for it.


I noticed Google Home sees the fan as a switch and not a fan with 2.0.9, is this normal? Because I do not see how it would be able to control speed with just an on/off.

So with these changes that are going to be made in the hotfix will this bring back the problem with Google seeing the device as a dimmer......

Our GH integration doesn't currently support fans as a specific device, but yes, it will become a dimmer in GH again.

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I originally thought that the 2.0.9 update was suppose to add support in GH for fans. This is an issue because I cannot add a fan to a room otherwise it detects it as a light. Is this something that will be added in the future?

We will likely update the Alexa skill and the GH integration in the future yes, it's not currently queued on the play list however...

Until official support is added to the GH integration (my guess is that it won't be any time soon - too many things in the queue in front of it), just shove all of your fans in a placeholder room in GH - I use "shed". At least that way they don't turn on/off with the lights in the actual GH room - and can still be controlled by name.

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Yeah that is what I have done now. Personally I think this issue should be resolved sooner then later because in its current form the basic functionality of the device is really not complete. Its like having a dimmer that can turn on/off but cannot dim.

I understand. But I don't think enhancing Alexa/GH integration is priority #1 for the HE team...

There are a number of local control enhancements and platform updates that they are working on. Cloud integration will always take a back seat to those efforts.

I have no doubt they will get to it eventually though. Just like they did with the Alexa and GH integration to begin with.


Well I hope that at least rule machine will see the device as a fan controller after the hot fix.

For now you can just use the generic Z-Wave dimmer driver. It will allow you to use Alexa again using percentages. Also you can setup a routine in Alexa for low, med, and high. I removed and added the devices in Alexa after changing the driver, not sure if that was nesesarry or not.

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The dimmer capability was added back in on tonight's hotfix. It wasn't listed in the changes, but I just checked and it is there.

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I still couldn’t get Alexa to respond correctly with the ge driver. Does it work for you?

Although I have echo dots, I don't use alexa for my voice control - I use google home.

Thanks - duh, not sure why I didn't think of using an Alexa routine! :smile:

BTW - I can leave it with the existing new driver now that the setLevel has been added back again.