Remove vs Exclude Devices

Is does removing a device have the same effect as excluding a device on Hubitat?

I'm looking to yank some old Z-Wave devices and replace with Z-Wave Plus devices. I don't really want to exclude each one of them. Plus, it would make it easier to have both devices listed in Hubitat for easy swapping of them in the apps (replace switch-old with switch-new). Once swapped, I can then remove the non-existent device without breaking any apps.

The two actions are not the same.

Removing a device removes it from the hub's database. However, the device itself doesn't know it, so it thinks it is still paired with a particular hub. Excluding the device both removes it from the hub's database and allows the device to be paired with another hub.

If you aren't going to reuse the devices, removal is fine. But, if you want to use them again (or resell them), excluding them is the best option.

Removing them that way will create 'ghost' devices in your zwave mesh/database. Very bad idea, and can even cause significant zwave mesh issues.

Zwave devices need to be properly excludsed whenever possible.

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Make yourself a plug-in pigtail for powering your switches. Pull the old one, install and join the new one, replace in your automations, then power up your old one with the pigtail so you can properly exclude it. The male plug in ends are cheap at a hardware store.


@fisheromega And the proper way to exclude a Z-wave device is by using that Device's Details page, and clicking on the Remove Device red button. This starts a Z-Wave Exclusion for that specific device. Do not Force Remove the device if at all possible. Properly Removing/Excluding the device cleans up both the Hubitat Database and the Z-Wave controller to prevent ghost devices.


Well said and exactly what I do. I cut an old computer/audio power cord with the wires exposed and use it to power the switch to exclude. Just be careful and don’t touch the side screws!

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After thinking about it, I will probably make a virtual switches as the 'middle-man' as I swap out the devices. It seems like the easier way to do the swap out.

One thing that I find is that I cannot remove conditions and triggers from a Rule. I can add new ones, but I cannot remove old ones. I have to redo the entire rule to remove a condition or trigger. I thought if I blanked out the device it would remove that condition/trigger. So ... I may end up having to redo all the Rules, so using a way to swap devices in them might not be an issue.

I will probably wait for an update to Hubitat before I start my upgrades:


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