My New Year's Resolution - Dump as much Zigbee & Z-wave as I can

This is just rambling thoughts from a guy who has done this for a while, and has some rare free time this Sunday morning. Feel free to pile on, argue, or ignore as you wish. It is NOT a criticism of Hubitat's z-wave or zigbee radios, which I find to be very reliable. Rather, it's more about uch (not all) z-wave and zigbee equipment I've used with my systems (two different properties).

About 15 years ago (maybe more) I got into home automation with X10. It actually worked pretty well, but lost most of its support by manufacturers, so I moved to Insteon. That was awful at first, but over time became rock solid - until the company behind it basically crashed. So, I jumped on the z-wave bandwagon for thermostats and lighting, with some zigbee for temp/humidity sensors here and there. Based on performance, especially from battery devices but with a fair amount of switch failure as well, I've decided to work toward minimizing my use of either of those technologies in 2024 and beyond, although I doubt I'll be able to eliminate them, sadly.

Instead, I'll focus on Lutron Caseta for lighting, I have it in five different buildings on our property, all controlled by a single Pro hub * in the basement ! * of one building because I originally didn't intend to use it in the four others, and much to my amazement, everything "just works". Every time, all the time. I did add a repeater in a second building, but holy cow, the range and reliability runs circles around my z-wave network (which has many different wired devices that allegedly repeat). I also use it in a second property we own, where I removed all the zigbee and z-wave lighting because of reliability issues, and it has performed beautifully there. So, more Caseta, less (hopefully no) z-wave or zigbee, for lighting.

For temperature and humidity monitoring, Ecowitt and @sburke781 's driver have been flawless, and the sensors use cheap AA batteries that are easy to change. In fact, this whole post was inspired by my frustration with both z-wave and zigbee temp/humidity sensors across two different properties we own. Those infernal little devices can drop off someone else's network, and get on someone else's nerves. I've come to despise them, so Ecowitt it is, going forward.

I do note that I've had rock solid performance from my GoControl wired z-wave thermostats, and from Zooz Zen 16 contact sensors/relays. My heavy-duty plug-in Zooz appliance controllers have also been good. Leviton plug-in controllers usually work well, but have required a couple of resets. So, those things will stay, and go into the new house we're building where required. They should give me ample repeating functions if placed appropriately. But for lighting control and for temperature/humidity monitoring, I hope to put z-wave in the rearview mirror as much as possible. Everyone needs goals for the new year...

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What do Ecowitt's use to connect? Wifi?

The ecowitt gateway uses WiFi to connect to your LAN (or ethernet, if you have the newer GW2000).

ecowitt sensors use sub-1 GHz radio frequency to connect to the gateway. The frequency is region dependent. In North America, it is 915 MHz. In Europe, 868 MHz. In Australasia, 433 MHz.


My counter random thought would be - why use Hubitat at all then if you aren't going to have any Z devices? There are other systems that are much better suited to cloud and wifi devices - home assistant, node-red, etc.

Anyway, not trying to "start something" - it is an honest question as I can't honestly say that I would use Hubitat for much of anything if I didn't have Z devices.


I think with any of the options for automation engines, there is a "cost" in terms of time and effort involved in moving all your automations from one to another. I am an advocate for having options available in any house, which I do myself, but I can't, at this time see myself moving everything to NR or HA, for example. Also, not suggesting I have considered that.... :slightly_smiling_face:

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For me, I don't feel it is so much a question of not ZigBee or Z-Wave, it feels like the mixing of different devices in the same mesh network brings a certain overhead to maintain and troubleshoot, where one bad device or manufacturer's devices can cause problems that need time to be diagnosed. The move to Lutton in particular could be likened to moving to using Philips Hue, only in that it can be run largely as a self-contained system that works well within it's own space (hue bridge on dedicated mesh), then to have integrations come in from outside, if that makes sense. (I'm not suggesting the outcomes are the same, just that one aspect).

For me Hubitat is the 'Glue' that holds everything together. I take what I feel is the best of each system and let each do what they do best. Then send the results to Hubitat to automate everything. Each of these hubs have been rock solid.

  • Ring Alarm: All window/door sensors, door locks, water/flood sensors, smoke/co listeners, glass break sensors, Water shutoff valve

  • Lutron Caseta: Every switch in the house! Outside outlets and lots of Pico's

  • Hue: Used in every lamp that isn't controlled by a wall switch. Also some outside motion sensors.

  • Home Assistant: Used to connect things that Hubitat can't do (yet!). ie. Aqara FP2 Motion Sensors

  • Hubitat: Only has a few Zigbee devices directly connected to it. Zwave radio is disabled. Also has a few Matter devices connected. Mainly collects the data/devices from the different systems and automates the house.


I have to say that with Hubitats C8, my Zwave network is rock solid... With the exception of all of the battery operated devices that are still way unreliable.
I don't have any zigbee devices.

From what it sounds like of your setup, the only competitor to Caseta would be the Zwave LR (if it ever gets off the ground). It sounds like there is an enormous distance between the switches and the Hub. In that type of situation, the low frequency of Lutron really shines. (Besides the fact that their switches are extremely dependable and reliable).

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Completely agree, which is why all of my real automation is in node-red. After having to re-do my automations a dozen or so times after switching hubs, or platforms, etc I bit the bullet and migrated my automations one last and final (as final as anything is in the computing world) time. Whether my device is wifi, LoRaWAN, hubitat, home assistant, etc they are all in node-red as the glue.

I decide to use zwave js, or z-way, or homeseer, or fibaro, or homie, or zigbee2mqtt next week? No big deal, swap out the devices in node-red (maybe with a change node to massage it into the right format) and all my logic is fine.

Within 60-90 minutes after the devices are paired/in whatever system I can migrate 100% of my logic for my entire house with no recoding. I've done it - multiple times - so that isn't a theoretical data point.

So for me node-red is what made home automation truly vendor and hub agnostic. But that isn't the right answer for everyone, nor would I ever suggest it is (for many and various reasons)!

I appreciate/agree with your point that Hubitat could still serve a purpose in the non-Z world if your automations are already there OR if you just prefer the automation logic options in Hubitat (and a LOT of people do, even if I don't!).

EDIT: All that said, as long as there is Maker API (or equivalent) Hubitat will likely always have a place in my home automation solution. Whether it is for Z devices, Matter, or something else entirely I haven't thought of. It is a very low maintenance/fuss system, and I like it VERY much.


2024 will be the year of the different manufacturers Matter Bridges integration in HE.

And Hubitat will remain the best hub to bring all the different technologies devices together, and make the best possible automation in your house.


I am the same. Moved most of my stuffs to node-red. This will be my year to move all my automations to Node-red if that's possible and not too time consuming.

Great minds … :wink:


So you guys are sniffing the same glue... :wink:


I intend to change nothing that is in place. Why would I change what is working perfectly?

I have just about every smart home radio that exists, with the exception of the integrator types (RA2, Control4, etc) and it’s all performing without fault.

Thread radio will be added via a new Apple TV, but the current available Matter devices are boring and unlikely to drive a Thread device purchase any time soon.

The thing that stopped me from switching to Caseta a long time ago was the options for switches and dimmers.

The wife love’s the Pico, but doesn’t want that style all over the house and guests find it annoying.

Now with the new Dalia devices on Caseta I almost switched, but…

When I played with the new Sunnata dimmer (non-Caseta) at Lowe’s I said to myself that I’d only move if they made a smart version of that.
That is a really slick device.
The t

I thought the same, so I bought a bunch and put them in our rental suite. They’re really annoying in actual use. You almost always accidentally adjust the level when reaching to turn them on or off. I would not install them again.

If you don’t like the style of the old Pico, then the Diva line is a good choice, and the dimming isn’t prone to accidental adjustment like the Sunnata are.

Hmmm, I guess playing with the store display isn’t the same as actual day to day use.

When trying it out it seemed pretty easy, but I do get what you are saying.

The Diva is the one with the tiny slider on the right?
Wasn’t a huge fan of it, but I can see how it could be less trouble.

I have a Aeotec WallSwipe I’m gonna try out, so I’m wondering we’re gonna get annoyed with it like you did with the Sunnata.

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To answer your question, I use Hubitat because I need something to run rules and, as others note, "tie it all together". Hubitat does that. Also, as others note, it's primarily the battery z-wave and zigbee devices that I really dislike, although I've found the quality of many switches to be much lower than that of the Casetas. And finally, if I do decide to sell this property one day, the Casetas and Picos can work perfectly well without a hub, while the z-wave stuff really can't. I have some z-wave switches in the garage to change out, and then I'm free of it for lighting. Looking forward to that.


Wouldn't be surprised if the "smarts" in a home become a selling point over the next 10-15 years...

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