My Experience So Far as an HE Newbie

I've had my HE installed for four days with all the plugs (Neo) available for registration. I wanted to let the community know what I've found.

First, if you have a large-ish home (2-story 4BR full basement, garage, den) the Neo plugs won't mesh very well. I've ordered a pair of Aeotech Repeater 7s to get more reliable connection. The garage can't be reached at all, even with some of the plugs less than 20 feet from it. My advice for larger homes is to assume at least one repeater will be required.

Second, I found that device setup didn't work exactly as the documentation and screens suggest. If you select "Add Device" you do get the screen that the documentation shows, and you can pick by device type or vendor. However, when I did that with my Z-Wave Plus plugs, it gave me another screen to confirm a Plus/secure connection, and when I said "confirm" it forced me through the push-five-times setup a second time. When I finally got things set up, even though I'd made the device selection already and it still showed on the screen, the device type was not set and I had to go back and set it from the details page. If you don't do this, the device can't be "exported" to Google Home.

The programming and setup were very easy (so far) and rules to set lights by time of day, set mode, use hub variables, log status via a push notification to the app, and so forth all worked as expected. I love the product and I'm glad I made the Hubitat choice.

I'm going to wait till I have the repeaters (a hard item to find, apparently) delivered before I try to integrate the motion sensors and the leak sensors.

Kudos for reading the documentation! Sometimes it lags new releases...

Take a look at these two articles before you go too far down the mesh road. I did not follow my own advice and it made things more difficult than they needed to be.

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Thanks! My intention was to install the two repeaters during a period when I'm not trying to control anything and then do a Z-wave Repair to set the routing tables. I'd then check the mesh diagram and the routes column on the display to make sure that everything is working as expected. I'd them start installing the end-node elements (motion and leak detectors). What I did with switches/plugs was to do one first and get it debugged before doing the others, and I expect to follow that pattern with the other stuff.

On the motion detectors, I did up a "stub" rule that added to my status counter for that detector, and set the device name in one hub variable (string) and then turned on another (switch) to tell a general text-and-logging function to run. I set up a hub variable/switch called "test mode", and if that was set then my stuff would run without motion, so I've tested that process already. I just need to set it to trigger on the real motion detector, then clone it for the others. I treat the three detection zones differently so I can't just trigger one rule on any of the three sensors.

Welcome, fellow Old Man. Don't be me. On my first setup I added repeaters last, big mistake. As the docs say, pair the repeaters first, then add devices after.
Repair has not really helped things for me, YMMV.
On my second go round(upgraded to C7 from C4) I did it the right way and much better results.

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After a lot of experimentation I'd recommend the Ring v2 extenders over those. For some unknown reason devices like that over the aeotec's most of the time.

That is largely unnecessary. If you have an individual node that is problematic just do that one, but overall repair is not usually recommended (as per the dev's )


Hi! Thanks for the feedback. I recently updated the documentation for the "new" pairing process (it was not a wizard-type process in older hub firmware, just the manual Zigbee/Z-Wave/etc. buttons that are now below). However, I didn't think about mentioning what happens when the Z-Wave device supports S2. In that case, you will indeed see that screen. I will add a note for that to address this confusion.

However, I'm not sure about what you're mentioning next. You shouldn't need to restart the pairing process on your device, if that's what you mean with the "push five times again" thing. I don't think this normally hurts, but the only time it should be necessary is if all of this timed out before the device was actually included (I prefer to move fast just in case, but the hub gives you a while; some devices may be pickier than others).

Finally, the wizard is mostly just to help you get the correct pairing (or inclusion/exclusion) instructions from the UI--an attempt at user-friendliness without you needing to get out the device manual, though the manual is a good source if you have it. It doesn't affect the driver it ultimately pairs with and is the same as if you just did the manual Z-Wave/Zigbee/etc. process yourself. If you want to help make this process better, feel free to share:

  • the brand and model of your actual device
  • the "fingerprint" log entry from "Logs" that you will see if you temporarily switch to the driver called "Device" and run the command called "Get Info" (then you can switch back to your regular driver) -- this will help staff match the driver with the device on pairing
  • what driver you're using that works, which I assume should be the one matching this device on the List of Compatible Devices - Hubitat Documentation (which also has a list of the recommended built-in drivers)

Google Home, as you found, needs to "know" the right commands and attributes the device supports in order to work with the device (and do note that only certain types of devices are supported there), though this the same applies to any Hubitat app in general, so the right driver is helpful to have regardless.

I second the advice to look at the mesh-building tips above. I'm not familiar with Neo plugs specifically, but most powered devices are repeaters for their respective protocols. There are af few some users find to not work quite as well as others.

Good luck!

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I'd have done that, Rxich, if i'd known that I needed the repeaters. Now, with all the stuff set up and most of it working, I'm stuck with either excluding everything and starting from scratch (which would be a LOT of work) or putting in the repeaters now. One of the reasons I decided to post my experience was to warn others who'd not yet started that they probably needed a repeater or two in a large home, so they could do it as you suggest.

"WuddaCuddaShudda" as they say :grinning: The Repeater 7s are already en route. Hopefully they'll work for me. I don't have that many devices, and the stuff isn't that far out of range!

Re the repair vs routing tables, I think you're suggesting that I repair any devices that, after I install repeaters, don't have a good route. I thought that when I tried to include a new device, it would find a route via repeater if there was one, in which case I'd only have to "repair" a device if it had an old and inefficient route that should have been better via repeater. Right?

Thanks for responding! What happened on my enrollment of the Neo plug was that (apparently) on my first push-five, it detected that the device could support a Plus connection, and it asked me to confirm that I had S2 or skip., and so I confirmed. The GUI then immediately reported that it was waiting the 100 seconds for enrollment. I assumed that meant it wanted me to repeat the pushes, but it's possible that the hub was still doing its thing based on my initial five pushes, and no other one was necessary. Is that not the case? If so, I'd suggest that the confirm/skip screen tell the user to simply wait as that 100 seconds counts down until the previous registration completes. If my second five-push was redundant, then that would explain why I didn't get the device driver set up (it said "Device" in the details once I'd named the plug and looked).

This should be a bit clearer in the next release.


Are these Neo Coolcam outlets? If so I bought 4 when I first got Hubitat and found they weren't very good. Although the signal strength was good, they were the devices with fewest neighbours (2 or 3) when other devices in the same locale had 18 plus. I returned them in the end and replaced with Fibaro models. In the same locations the Fibaro ones massively out performed the Neo Coolcam ones (unfortunately they were also twice the price)

You've included them S2 security. Unless it's a door/garage device, it is recommended that you include them without S2 as it generates more traffic and can slow down your mesh.

Having just gone through this, I'd suggest you exclude these devices and re-include them without the S2. Much easier to do it now than wait until you've got them written into a bunch of rules.

Also, although I've never seen someone talk about firmware updates for Neo devices, they might be available, and during setup is the time to apply them. The manufacturer's support pages is where to start for that.

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No worries; I got it to work, but I do think it could be confusing for we beginners :grinning: Love the product and the software!


@OldGuy I have both Aeotec and Ring range extenders and I echo @rlithgow1's recommendation. I don't know why but the Rings seem to repeat more devices than the Aoetecs. Another big plus is they have battery backup so if you have a brief power failure devices repeating through these won't get affected. Unless, of course, they are also mains-powered :slight_smile:


All the stuff I'm controlling are line-powered, so the backup consideration isn't a factor (yet). The Aeotec unit is on the way now, so I don't have the latitude to change. I hope it will work for me; if not, I'll try to return it and get the Ring. Thanks!

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Make sure you have your hub and preferably also your network equipment on a UPS.


Hey if they work... you know the old saying!

Indeed I do!

I'm not that worried about power issues. What I really do with home control is control lights the great majority of the time. If we happen to be away, or at night, I'd like to be able to to light our outside security lights. Without power, none of this is possible even if the hub and network are active. We have underground utilities here, too, and we've probably had less than five power fails that were anything other than momentary.

Having the hub on a UPS helps protect from the possible consequences of an uncontrolled shutdown - mostly database corruption. A momentary disruption can be just as harmful.

I generally put anything sensitive on a UPS even though I don't have power failures often, and I have a generator... but of course everyone is different.


Oh, you will when (not if) your hub's database becomes corrupted by an unexpected (and abrupt) power fail shutdown. If you get the Ring Extender v2 (as you indicate you will), put in rules that cleanly shut the hub down when the Ring Extender sends a power fail event. If you want, I posted my voting rules for shutdown with Ring a couple of months ago. Here is that post:

I made a comment in that post that perhaps I should always shut down if the Ring Extender on the same circuit as the Hubitat hub indicates power fail, but, on reflection, I have left it the way it is because that Ring Extender might accidentally get knocked out of the receptacle, and I wouldn't want the Hub to shut down if it wasn't a true power fail. Leaving it as a vote between all the Ring Extenders seems the better way to do it.

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