RM to control modes instead of Mode Manager, need Help with HOLIDAYS

So I tried using Mode Manager, but it wasn't working as it was supposed to, and I ran into issues when Holidays would fall on weekdays. Someone recommended I use RM to control modes instead. I actually like this, since it allows me to "pause" modes, since they are rule based and not time based.

So I deleted Mode Manager.

I created a few rules in Rule Machine:

  1. Day: At 6am on Mon, Tues, Wed, Thurs, Fri turn on "Day" Mode
  2. Evening: At Sunset -31min on Sun, Mon, Tues, Wed, Thurs turn on "Evening" Mode
  3. Night: At 8pm on Sun, Mon, Tues, Wed, Thurs, turn on "Night" Mode
  4. Weekend: At Sunset -30min on Fri turn on "Weekend" Mode ("weekend" is from Fri night through Sun evening)

Then, for Holidays - I created a virtual switch "Holiday Switch" and made a rule in RM:

Trigger: "Holiday Switch" ON

Actions:

  • Set mode to "Weekend"
  • Pause Rules: "Day", "Evening", "Night"
  • Wait for events: "Holiday Switch" OFF
  • Resume Rules: "Day", "Evening", "Night"

POTENTIAL ISSUES

  1. This requires manual input from me each time (both to turn it on and off). Is there a way I can link a start and end trigger to a personal calendar of mine?
  2. When the switch is turned off, let's say at 10pm, what mode will it go into? The modes are initiated at certain times, in this example, "night" starts at 8pm. I could just default to "night" mode after the switch is flipped off, but what if I turn it off mid-day...?

Any thoughts on how to make this better?

THANKS!

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I think I mentioned this to you in a previous thread? Isn't presence more important than the day of the week or a holiday?

Wouldn't you rather have things run normal if there was (for example) a snow day, and the kids are stuck at home? That event isn't scheduled in advance so how do you make a rule for that? Same for a sick day, or just some unexpected schedule change, maybe you got off work early that day or had to stay late.

So I take presence, and sunrise/sunset and make a rule from that. Home and Daytime, Night and Home, Day and Away, and so on.

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You did mention it previously. I don't know how everyone else has their rules for presence (and for that I assume you mean motion sensors - because kids aren't walking around with phones), but for example if it's a holiday/weekend I want my morning routines to run at a later time than normal. Would hate to have lights on and music playing at 6am on a weekend/holiday. I do use motion sensors for some rooms and rules, but in other places, I find it best to run based on modes.

Nope, not motion. Either phones, and/or presence fobs that can go on a keychain or backpack or something else you carry all the time when you leave.

I see what you are saying about weekends and holidays, but why have music start automatically at 6 AM in the first place. That would definitely make me want to hurt someone if that happened! :grin:

I don't think there is a great solution to automatically schedule. You can make rules for certain days and have that rule pause or change another rule. But that is a bit of manual input of dates and so on.

How about a button that you could press the night before a holiday? A virtual switch you could press in the app?

So that is what I just did, created the virtual switch "Holiday Switch" and it does just that. It pauses the other Rules/Modes until the switch is turned off.

And sometimes I can sleep later than 6, but sometimes I get up before then :frowning:
But definitely do not want to wake at 6 on the weekend...

Now if you want to get fancier, make a new rule that pauses the mode rule for (2 hours?) when you push that button. Or you can make a new rule to automatically reset that button after it is turned on. There is even an app that I think could reset that virtual button. Lots of ways to "automate" it.

This app is also available in Hubitat Package Manager. If you haven't tried HPM, you should, it makes finding and installing apps much easier.

Also,

Was thinking about what I could do if it was a 2 or 3 day weekend (Thanksgiving, New Years etc.) or just a long personal vacation, so need a way to extend the "weekend".

I'm not sure if I did this correctly... the issue is that I have rules that are triggered by the mode becoming WEEKEND. So either I need the button to switch off and back on (this is what I tried to do below, but I think I did it incorrectly), or is there a way for a rule to just check every few hours to see if a Mode is active?

Totally different concept to yours, but that is what my rules do. If NOT this, that or other, THEN xyz.

I handle holidays like the following.

For one I use the holiday switcher app and choose the holidays I want.

Most my house runs exactly the same except for alarm lights.

I have a condition to check if the holiday light is off.

That’s it.

I use mode manager as normal, but I have a mode called pause. All my motion lighting is disabled if the mode is in pause.

I also have a rule if the virtual switch “pause - all” turns on to pause a list of rules and set the mode into pause. This allows me to pause automations of my choice.

That’s how I do stuff.

hmmm I'll need to look at the holiday switcher.. thanks

I didn't think of making a pause mode, I kinda did a similar thing by using the rules to control modes and can pause them easily.

Honestly, I'm not so great with "conditional" rules, just feel like they never work as intended, so I spend more time writing more rules to avoid it, but it's probably time I really took a deep dive.

Wish there was a way to run a check on a rule, and test it to make sure it runs as expected before "releasing" it upon my house...

Maybe others can make a recommendation on how to deploy and test.

I just drive my wife and kids crazy. :slight_smile:

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especially since if there is an "if" scenario, usually one half of the condition is met more frequently, and seems fine, and then all of a sudden weeks later I'll hit the other condition and can't pinpoint what went wrong and why it didn't work.

Please either recommend a good testing method, or just best way for me to learn conditionals and if/if-else etc.. (I have watched the hubitat videos, but need more complex examples)

Can I just ask a question? Why are you overthinking modes? IMHO - that's exactly what's happening. When I started home automation I tried to figure out modes for every. Single. Thing. EVERYTHING. Do you know how difficult that becomes when you have 150+ devices and you decide that you need to add a mode because your movie got interrupted on the 185th day in the Month of May 2020 during quarantine? (sorry I couldn't resist the reference). But geesh. If you put too much stock into modes, you'll have a mess to sort out later because modes will collide.
I got some great advice early on and an edict from my husband that he will put no effort into pushing a button or issuing a voice command. DONE
The advise I got was to set modes according to when you're home/sleeping/away/ and maybe quiet time. (kids in bed, you're awake).
THAT'S really all you need to make things run efficiently without trying to keep track of every little thing. Micromanaging in a way.
So, I'm going to lay down the same advice here. My house has 4 modes. Away/home/night/quiet.
Away- we're gone - things are off. HSM is armed and notifications are set up.
Home - We're here. Things are interacting with us. Base lights on activities. Harmony controls the lights when the tv is on, these types of controls will be way easier to manage. Don't try to predict what you'll be doing every minute of the day. If you're home holiday or not, you're still using the house like any other day when you're home.
Quiet time - This is a special one for me becuase I modified phone chargers with contact sensors to change this mode. If one person is in bed, quiet time engages. The bedroom lights DON'T turn on bright. They're blue. The kitchen lights don't turn on to shine into the bedroom. Things interact in the house in a muted manner. TV's still interact and life goes on even when someone is in bed.
Last is night mode. - both adults in bed. Lights turn off. Night indirect lighting turns on in needed areas and nothing interacts in bright ligths. Except for the basement lights. Quiet time is also in the morning. Same concept. Don't wake the spouse. You just have to think about how you USE you house. Not about mapping every minute of every day excluding the 100th day of May, 2020.
Just some food for thought.

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HAHA I appreciate the sentiment.

My Modes are just DAY, EVENING, NIGHT, WEEKEND that is it. (Truth is evening is probably superfluous, but it kinda came in the default and I left it)

Because of the nature of who is home on various days of the week and at various times different devices need to be on/interactive, whereas on other times if they are on it will be intrusive.

Almost every rule and automation is NOT based on a Mode. For the most part, modes mostly just impact how bright the lights get in certain parts of the house based on the timing. In addition, our weekday and weekend routines are very different and so having the "weekend" mode allows me to modify some of the rules such that it allows for a lazier morning and alters some of the motion parameters.

Just trying to solidify the rules I have no so they just go automatically. I do have a few rules that are based on Modes, but really only like 2-3.

Perhaps you are right and I'm just sucked into the rabbit hole and keep tinkering.

Appreciate your views!

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Oh be still my heart. You are one that actually wants your house to look and interact like an old married couple. I like your way of thinking. You - are on the right track. I will come edit this post after I go and grab my screenshots of my mode rules. I will post all of them for you. I DO hope this helps you to better understand the concept of changing modes through rules.
This rule controls home and away. I still haven't edited this rule. The life 360 is included in combined presence and should be removed as a trigger event.
image
This one changes modes according to phones being docked in the bedroom. My favorite automation.
image
these two rules govern my home. I hope it helps.

very interesting, what is the "phone contact sensor"?

This

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cool project!!

Would it not have been easier just to use a smart plug and measure the power being drawn through them?

Most of my rules that are based on modes are mainly for lights as well. I have a kitchen automation that the lights above the cabinets are on after sunset, but dim down to 15% when there is not activity in the kitchen and brighten to 100% when there is. This keeps the big lights for turning on for a drink of water. In night mode, one strip turns off and the other strip dims to 50% when someone is rooting around in the middle of the night and down to 15% inactive. It's very muted and keeps the HAF at an optimal level.


I removed a trigger and the or stayed, but it's solid. Maybe you'll get some ideas?

I have an entirely different use case, for setting my exterior lights to certain colors at night for different holidays (red/pink for Valentine's, green for st. Patrick's, red white and blue for memorial day, 4th of July, veterans day, etc). Since both use cases involve determining when the holiday is, I thought I would share my approach - it's worked well for me so far. I have a global variable (boolean) for holidays, and a separate rule which triggers on "periodic schedule" entries that align with the desired holidays, to set the global var true/false. My other rules (to set a scene, etc) then check this global var. The same can be done with your virtual switch, to have one rule that checks each of the relevant dates (or Monday in the last week of May, for memorial day or other holidays that aren't a specific date) and toggles your switch accordingly. Just my 2 cents.

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