Not Very Impressed So Far (as a secondary controller)

I bought a new Hubitat Elevation hub after reading all of the great things about it. My hopes would be that I could migrate from my existing Gen 2 SmartThings hub.

Not very impressed at all.

Does Z-Wave actually work on this device?

My system is heavy Z-Wave (54 Z-wave devices: 49 switches, 2 thermostats, 2 garage doors, and 1 door lock) and some Zigbee (14 devices: 5 motion sensors, 4 leak sensors, and 5 plugs (used as repeaters). Additionally, I have Philips Hue, Sonos Speakers, and a Rachio sprinkler controller.

As every switch, garage door, and main door lock is Z-wave, I figured I would start with Z-Wave. If this was successful (which it's not, see below), I would then migrate the Zigbee and other devices over.

As I am not ready to unpair everything from the main hub and repair it with an unknown quantity, I decided to bring the Hubitat hub in as a secondary Z-Wave hub.

Total fail so far.

  • I do the steps outlined in the documentation

  • The Hubitat hub gets a Z-Wave address

  • It says it is learning the Z-Wave network

  • I hit refresh on the Z-Wave page...nothing happens

  • I go away for 30 minutes and come back...nothing

  • I reboot the hub, now the devices appear on the Z-Wave page...but they are not devices in Hubitat yet.

  • The devices don't exist, but I get all kinds of cool stats (data rate between this node and that node)...OK - cool, never seen that in SmartThings

  • I do some "Google Fu" and see I have to hit the discover button

  • I hit the discover button...Z wave network is busy

  • I hit multiple discover buttons...Z wave network is busy

  • I keep mashing the discover buttons

  • I get a CPU high usage warning??? WTF is that???

  • Finally, 2 make it through and appear as Hubitat devices...I am like cool

  • The Hubitat hub did not properly assign the correct device issue, SmartThings would do this sometimes

  • I pick the GE Enbrighten Z-Wave Switch or Dimmer driver (as this is what they are)

  • However, these devices NEVER update their status

  • When I try to turn a switch on or off, nothing happens

  • I keep hitting the discover button

  • More Z-Wave network busy messages

  • After 2 hours of mashing the discover button, I finally get about 30 switches now showing up as Hubitat devices

  • However, none of these devices are updating their status, and I cannot control them

  • I do some more "Google Fu"...try to repair the network

  • I hit times out...goes to the next node...times out

Does Z-Wave actually work on this device???

Why in the world would you try and bring the Hubitat in as a secondary controller?

There are good products to allow you to link the hubs so you don't have to migrate all at once.


Why in the world would I not utilize the directions that are published with the device, and required for Z-Wave certification? Ummm...I'll just leave this.

I would be curious to know what products exist to allow me to link hubs...never heard of this. Can you offer a suggestion and/or link?

I would suggest you read this forum, do a few searches. There are literally hundreds of people who have migrated from SmartThings to Hubitat. You are the first one that has attempted this approach but, hey, go for it! After all it is in the certification documents!


Thanks for the "help" - I had no idea these forums would be so friendly.

Can anybody else offer assistance?

1 Like

Here is one.

1 Like

@Eric.C.Miller gave you a couple excellent suggestions. I'd recommend following up on them.


Never had to migrate from SmartThings but I know for a fact that you can use Hub Link to have both your hubs (HE and ST) talk together so that it's an easier transition.

If you read in the Documentation section you will most likely find all the info you need, Hubitat Elevation Documentation - Hubitat Documentation

1 Like

Hi and welcome to the forum.
I must admit I'm not sure what you mean by connecting the HE hub as a secondary hub to ST.

But leaving that aside, if you still have all your devices connected to your ST hub then there is a community app called 'HubConnect' which allows you to link the HE and ST hub.
Do a search and you will find the links to the drivers/apps etc.
If you follow this route you will be able to leave everything on ST and and have HE run all your automations/rules etc. locally for the devices. (Non cloud devices of course).

You can then, if you wish to, gradually migrate your z-wave and zigbee devices from ST to HE by excluding them from your ST hub and including them on your HE hub.
Personally I would start building out from you hub with devices that repeat and then move on to non-repeating devices to build up a solid mesh.

Have fun and welcome.


My apologies for coming across with an attitude.


OK - thank you all for the replies so far.

My patience is short at the moment - spent some frustrating time already with the Hubitat hub...and as I said, not impressed.

@Eric.C.Miller: No harm, no issue here. Thank you for the link on the Hub Link. I had to install an app on the SmartThings issues with this. However, do you know if this will this still function once SmartThings moves away from cloud execution (this is the reason I wish to move away from SmartThings...totally changing their API..again...)

I don't know that answer. I moved off SmartThings a long time ago (July 2018) and haven't followed what they are doing. Some others here may know (much) more about that.

Well, I moved away from ST just over 2 months ago. Started off slow but it went so well I went all the way in a very short time. I too had planned to keep ST in the "picture" but the way things are working within Hubitat and the (dismal) future of ST I have all but tossed out my ST Hub. Only thing left on it is my Home Energy Meter which reports data to an excel spreadsheet. If Hubitat should disappoint me in the future I'll look elsewhere but it will not be towards ST.

I understand the patience issue. It's important to be aware (I think you are based on what you've been reading but . . .) the Z-Wave implementation in the Hubitat C-7 is based on the new 700 series chip and Silicon Labs SDK. Hubitat is one of the early adopters of this technology and there are a few "issues". Largest of these is the way it selects the S2 security mode for pairing. It does, however, work - pretty well. I have moved most of my Z-Wave devices over. The ones I haven't moved have been due to logistical problems not failures to join the new hub. The Zigbee stuff came over very easily and is all moved save two devices that, again, have logistical challenges (physical access). The staff has been attentive to these issues and I expect the next platform release will resolve any of the issues that Hubitat can resolve and (hopefully) some that were resolved by Silicon Labs.

1 Like

After changing the driver type and clicking SAVE, did you go back into the device and click CONFIGURE? On Hubitat, simply changing the driver type does not cause the device driver to send the configuration commands to the actual device. One must click CONFIGURE manually. If the device is discovered correctly and the proper driver is assigned during inclusion, the CONFIGURE routine is automagically called.

NOTE: I have NO IDEA how things will behave with Hubitat as a secondary controller. My guess is probably not all that great. But, I thought the above information might still be helpful to you and others in the future.


I had no idea bout the manual configure...never had to do this with SmartThings, so I didn't look for it (or didn't notice it staring me in the face).

I will give this a shot and see if it resolves the issues I am seeing.


I do. :slight_smile: And the answer is - it won't. At least not in any way that will be of any use to an end user.

Everyone can thank the Zwave Alliance for making secondary controller pairing required, without actually requiring it to "work" on the hub. Crappy compliance spec if I've ever seen one.


I think this is fairly common on ST if you use a custom driver. I know with my Fibaros, virtually all of them needed a custom driver anyway, though that's likely to be because ST (and partially Hubitat) are US focused much more than EU. But hopefully once you've transferred a few devices you'll realise how smooth it is running on Hubitat.

1 Like

I had a great experience coming from a system much the same as yours only with Blink, DSC alarms, Webcore, Action Tiles and other special considerations.
I read the forum for months and planned what apps I needed to get everything working.
I went with HubConnect and just left a few unsupported devices on the ST hub. I also made the commitment to upgrade everything to Z-Wave Plus as ST used coding tricks to update the device status quickly where HE doesn't.
It's been 2 months now and things are 300% better than ST.
One thing to note is I did have to move my ST hub around as the working switches were a real B to exclude unless the hub was close.

I always triggered the exclude process from Hubitat, rather than Smartthings, which definitely made it easier, as then the include was easy as I could do them back to back

1 Like