Please, what is the suggested 3 switches plate to be integrated in a new smart system?

Dear all,

I’m happy to have found a warm community like that. I’m from Italy, and here the smart home is still not so common.

We are renovating our house completely, so I’d like to add this automation.

The main question is: what switches do you suggest? I need to buy many, so I really would like to have no issue with them

The main point is:

  • need a standard plate with 3 switches (like the USA I think). 120x85mm (4,7” x 3,3”)
  • 100% compatible with habitat
  • Comes from EU preferably. I noticed that in USA there are tons of good brands, but not in EU. And it is preferable to avoid custom issue for import.

Another tip would be very appreciated:

Since we are doing a complete new electric distribution from zero, do we need to consider some “mandatory” tips that are useful for the smart home?

Thanks in advance,

Elisa.

Hi @elisarossi280

Welcome to Hubitat. I changed the tag on your post to indicate you're from EU - hopefully making it easier for Hubitat users from the EU to comment with helpful suggestions.

As a start, I'm tagging @BorrisTheCat and @bobbles - they're from the UK, but hopefully can chip in.

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Thanks @aaiyar :+1:t2:

I can suggest, but the rest of world and even Europe is quite behind on what we in the UK would consider is minimal safety when it comes to electrical installations. We are supposed to be "harmonised" with Europe like 15 years ago but the only thing that's the same is the colours and sort or the voltage but not fully. So there may be things that are harder to get but I will try.

Couple of key fundamental things:

Use plastic back boxes everywhere, so "fast fix boxes" or plaster board boxes. Three reasons for this, the minimum depth of them is 35mm and the deeper the box the better if you can use 47mm it really opens up options. The other reason is most devices are wireless so signal is not then put in a Faraday cage like it is when using metal back boxes. And also allows you to make changes easier as you can leave a little slack in the wall.

Everything should have a live and neutral at each point. Most devices need a feed of some sort so by ensuring you "loop down" to each switch location for example it again opens up much more options and doors on you journey.

For best practices in our regs there should always be a point of isolation within a certain distance to the device, that could be as simple as a light switch isolating a lamp or light fitting (with lamps) in a room (yes it's a lamp not a "bulb" they make flowers :rofl: ). So what do you do when you switch is smart? Should that be isolated locally? As a sparky I would say as per the regs you should not remove the cover when the supply is live so no because you should isolate the whole circuit. However if your changing the lamp on that smart switch is it isolated when you turn it off? No mostly definitely not, so how I get over this is each room has a "key switch" isolation point at high level (2 m ish) this cuts the light supply to the room and so is compliant.

All over device ie power are already have normal isolation points in the room or blinds (on the socket's circuit) has a un-swiched isolation point to fuse it down EX.

All of this has additional advantages to smart home aswell, it means when your settings up or joining device you can isolate per area. So resetting a smart lamp for example doesn't reset the whole circuit.

A new addition to our regs is surge and ark fault protection and this again is something which is advantageous for a smart home protecting your devices and you.

RCBOs per circuit is also a min requirement in the UK (not that everyone quite abides to this one, most have two RCDs which is understood to be acceptable, but is technically against regs).

The reason for these suggestions is for example smart switches modules they can be used with normal dumb looking switches. This again brings down costs as it opens up options. There are loads of manufactures who do these I'll try and update this with some links once I get to my PC :+1:t2:.

https://click-smart.com/

https://www.samotech.co.uk/product-category/electrical/zigbee-modules/

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Fabulous wisdom @BorrisTheCat. The lack of Hubitat users in the UK frustrates me and more annoying is the minimal amount of smart devices compared to our cousins over the pond.

I started my smart home journey around 3 years ago which was roughly the same time as I built my house. Foolishly I started with ST but their forums were poor and didn't give the same type of sound advice which this forum does.

If I would have started with the HE forum,then I'd probably have neutrals at every light switch and also deep back boxes too. Unfortunately I overlooked this when building my house through poor knowledge and guidance from the ST forums. (Ultimately my failing)

Thankfully the Samotech 323 dimmer takes care of most of my shortcomings because there's no neutral required, however I wish I had neutrals available for non dimmable bulbs such as wall lights which have transformers.
(Any ideas welcomed)

Finally, does anyone know how many HE users there are in the UK, I'd love to know. @bobbyD is this information available in the public domain :slightly_smiling_face:

That information is not available.

Curiosity has got the better of me. I understand :+1:

Trust me, I've had that curiosity myself, we just don't collect location data from hubs and based on sales wouldn't be accurate, because we have many partners all over the world that cross each others' regions.

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We have the group on the forum but that wont be everybody.

I expected the low numbers in the UK forum. Fingers crossed that there are at least 10x the users than what the forum holds. Hopefully sales will continue to rise in the UK. I personally am flying the HE flag

It does alarm me that HE only makes money upon hub sales given the support that the staff offers. I truly hope that our American cousins are bank rolling HE with unprecedented sales :+1:

they also have the hub protect services

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Ok, to give you a suggestion: I really love Shelly. You have the option of just switching on/off using the Shelly 1 or dimming using the Shelly dimmer. Nice part is, that these are relay modules, which you can use with your standard hardware, giving you a maximum flexibility. They work even when the internet is down and Hubitat is broken, so one more plus. Those switches are WiFi, what you have to keep in mind for your mesh. If you want to build your home on another protocol (Zigbee, Z-Wave), there are tons of other options out there. Especially for In-Wall-Switches, I would always prefer relays, which I can just put behind existing hardware, mainly because I love the possibility to change the optical appearance of my Hardware, without the need to change functionality.

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