Schlage BE469 extreme battery drain

Hey there,

So I have a BE469 that works as well as can be expected, it has FW 7.1 on it. I was tied to Wink for years, and I switch to Hubitat. There is a Zwave Pro light switch (GE) located right next to it like 12 inches away. The hubitat hub itself is about 30ft or so a couple floors up. I've run Zwave Repair as I update and change devices.

I was getting 6 - 8 months of battery minimum on this lock with Wink. Now... I got ~ 1 month before it died. What can I do to fix this?? Whats the issue here? I enabled Debug Logging to see what the heck is going on, but I am pretty concerned. Twice now in 1 month (once with teh same batteries that ran the lock for 6 months already and now one with new batteries) the lock just shut down and wouldnt respond cause of low power. I've never had that happen in 3 years with Wink.

When I moved from Wink to Hubitat, I did a proper exclusion, and then joined it to the Hubitat Zwave network.

I am also noticing a few other Zwave devices like leak sensors draining at a rate higher than I've seen before?

Had the same issue. Here's what has worked for me.

It's too early to comment on battery life. But most of the other issues have resolved.

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yeah Placing the Zwave Pro GE Light switch next to it (replacing an older non pro Leviton Zwave switch that was there) under a food away from the lock I hoped would help. maybe some more rebuilds are in order?

The BE469 is known to have various issues on the HE platform. No one is really sure why it works well for some and not for others. Mine had issues across multiple platforms, so I replaced it with a Kwikset 914 zigbee lock. No more issues.

I found lithium batteries last a lot longer than rechargeable batteries but are a lot more expensive.

I eventually used the unused wire that the builder had installed for a conventional alarm system to transmit 5 volts. Then I bought a small sheet of copper from Amazon and cut 1/2 inch strips to make contacts on the top of the door.
Then soldered wires to the contacts and ran them down the edge of the door into the lock covering the wires with weather stripping.
Removed the batteries so now I always have power to the locks when the door is closed and no power when open.
This way the dead bolt does not close when the door is open and figured if the door is open having power to the lock was pointless anyway.
Just finished it yesterday will see how well it works in the long term.

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Yep I used Lithium years ago with this , but then I found 2500mAh Eneloop Pro rechargeables lasted close to 8 months so I just stuck with that. I put a new set in now wiht Debug logging turned on to see if the system is polling a shit ton or what is up.

So far it seems pretty tame, one only refresh/polling overnight. We'll see how this set goes. I also re-re-re-re ran Zwave repair for what its worth.

Something else happened just today that may be a clue to something else going on. I found my lock "dead" this morning when last night it reported 88% battery still (on rechargeables, so that is about the highest it goes on those).

I unplugged and replugged in the battery pack and it came back to life. Is there any way the Hubitat could "kill" or "knock out" my door lock like that? I've never seen that behavior before until I joined it to the Hubitat system.

I would question more of the "rechargeable" batteries being the issue. I've never had anything similar to this on 3 separate locks in almost 2 years using lithium, in fact I've only changed the batteries once (to the lithium) since installing with the factory provided batteries.

It may be related to battery reporting. Rechargeables do not report the correct value to the locks. The manufacturers will always say use only Alkaline, and its primarily for this reason. I use reachable batteries in my August lock. I’ve tested the batteries and they’re fine, but the lock will tell me the day after I charge them, that they are critically low.

Try Alkaline batteries for a few days. I’ve been meaning to do that with the August, just to try to reset the circuit that checks battery level, so I can hopefully go back to rechargeable batteries without the lock constantly messaging me that the batteries are low, when in fact, they are not.

These are the same brand/make of batteries that I've used for 2 years in the lock successfully :slight_smile: Yes it doesnt list at 100% immediately but hold at around 80-60% for 9 months! I've used Alkaline and Li as well... but the Eneloop work great BEFORE hubitat.

Not sure if this latest weird ass "non responsive" activity of the lock is the lock just going bad, or if this is a side effect of hubitat in the environment. I have Debug logging on for the lock and see zero indication of what could be happening.

I understand it worked before. You reset the lock to join it to a Hubitat correct? That would be a change from before. Was there maybe a setting that has to be set in the lock, that perhaps you forgot about because you’ve had the lock for so long?

What about how it joined? Is it joining Securely now, and perhaps it wasn’t before? The radio has to transmit 3x when paired securely. Maybe there’s an issue that wasn’t found with the lock previously if it wasn’t securely joined before? Is its firmware up to date?

How about battery level reporting, how often is it occurring in the log?

You really can’t get to the bottom of the issue unless you take the lock back to the manufacturer’s stated baseline. That should include another exclude, then factory reset with Alkaline batteries installed. Others have this lock and don’t report this issue, so you’re going to need to figure out what’s different about your installation.

Any way to move that repeater in between the lock and the hub, instead of closest to the lock?

I’m not saying any one thing here is the cause, but you’re going to need to establish a baseline with all the manufacturers recommendations first or you may not ever find the issue.

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yep, the lock was reset to factory defaults. Then joined to the Hubitat new via the process they defined for the join.

I believe the Wink Hub 2 connection to the Schlage was secure/encrypted from my research.

There is no firmware updates for the locks, they are as they ship sadly. There are newer firmwares but it requires a new $250 lock purchase to get it...

battery level reporting happens ~ 6 times a day it seems (or more if the door opens and closes a lot during the day).

There is a GE Zwave Pro switch 12" from the lock, and sitting between it and the Hub. (as well as a few other Zwave Pro devices in the area of the lock. I've seen no issues setting codes, refreshing status, etc... once those switches and such were in place. I've repaired the Zwave network many times since then.

The battery drain issue that I started the thread with is something I am still monitoring (with a new fresh set of batteries a week ago, and they are still holding strong). BUT... the fact the lock wouldn't respond this morning out of nowhere until I unplugged and replugged the battery pack was a new development I haven't seen before. I am going to verify integrity of the connections and such. Just weird, its like it was lockedup.

I see. Sounding more like a lock issue than anything else. A driver isn’t going to make the lock stop responding to the point that it has to be essentially rebooted.

Maybe you can get a warranty replacement from Schlage and by doing so, get one with the latest firmware?

I was already pretty disappointed with the battery life when I switched from SmartThings to Hubitat for my three Schlage locks. I keep track of the battery usage and I was easily running to just under a year with SmartThings.

On my switch to Hubitat the battery life on all three locks dropped to roughly 1 month. The battery issue I am having is all a Hubitat issue. I reported this and have been hoping for a fix. And now after the last update ( Hubitat Elevation® Platform Version I did two weeks ago to the Hub the Schlage locks are running ONLY 1 week!! I just did my second battery replacement.

What in the world changed in the update?! HELP!

I was using the Generic Z-Wave Lock and just switched to the specific Schlage BE468/469 Lock just to see if that does anything.

It's not a "Hubitat" issue ...I have 3 of these locks at which the Reliable Locks app polls EACH of them EVERY 5 minutes reporting the lock/unlock status and battery level. NONE of my 3 have lost more than 10% battery in the 3 months I've had Hubitat.

Thanks. I haven't tried Reliable Locks yet. Loading now just to get some data points on how bad this issue is for me. So what do you think would cause my locks to sudden go battery hungry all at the same time?

I honestly wouldn't have a clue what would cause it....I know some have reported having the issue and many others reported they have not. One thing that separates each user is how their strength of zwave meshes are built, whether that is relevant is beyond me. I personally have 35 zwave devices of which 22 of them are repeaters and 4 of those 22 are range extenders/amplifiers. So only 13 battery operated zwave devices at which 3 are the locks.

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Keep in mind that this app will only reduce your battery life because it does extra polling on your locks.

Have you done a zwave repair recently? If you feel you have a strong zwave mesh then a repair may help.

My 2 locks have had poor battery life in the past (less than 3 months life) but not nearly as bad as yours. Recently, their battery life has been "good". I haven't changed the battery in either for 6 months.
I have also had the issue where it would drop off the mesh and I would have to pull the battery pack out and reinsert it. I'm wondering if that may be your issue and not actual battery life. With the recent updates, the drop off issue seems to have gone away too. Time will tell.

Excellent point my friend! I did do a zwave repair recently and thought that I might have caused the issue. I lost a zwave switch so I did the repair and it was about the time I was having issues. I will actually do a voltage check on the next time it happens.

I also see people are putting zwave plus repeaters near their locks like we had to do with the zigbee repeaters to fix the fan controllers, btw that really solved my issues with the fans as I have had only one drop out since I had those installed.

Did you install the Iris v2 outlets for the fans?
If so, they are zwave plus repeaters as well.