Set your Home to a mode!

Modes are probably the most powerful way to get started automating your Home! Hubitat Elevation comes with a built-in app that allows you to manage your preset modes (Away, Night, Evening, Day) or create your own to better suit your needs.

If you'd like to find out more about Mode Manager app, please check out below YouTube video. If you'd like to help others discover the power of modes, please leave a comment below on how you use them to elevate your environment.



Just saw this on Reddit. Very helpful video!

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Yea, I'll have to check it out. Now that all my devices and automations have been transferred from Wink, I need to explore how Modes will improve my set up. Everything went pretty smoothly, just had to retire the GE Link bulbs as they are problematic as others have stated.

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Only if you mix them with non-bulb devices. I have half-a-dozen Osram RGBW A19s and two regular Lightify A19s. Replacing them with Sengleds would have cost about $100. So I put them on an HE by themselves (along with a couple Peanuts that I had). They've been all good. The HE sale price came in handy!

I would use it but it doesn't work if I am away and I don't want or need that.

NM I created a mode called NoMode and used that instead as the away. Modes should change no matter if I am home or away.

How many modes is everyone else using? Anything special?

Away (typical away, in town)
Away-Work (special options away, cause I travel for work)
Early-Morning (when I am up before sunrise, enabled with button push)
Day (Sunrise to sunset)
Evening (Sunset until bedtime)
Night (Typical bedtime, but also button enabled)

I only had 3 of the GE Link's and it was simply easier to replace them … I ended up replacing with the $4.88 EcoSmart Bulbs from Home Depot … I now have no ZigBee issues. I am using a mixture of Sengled, EcoSmart, Sylvania (RGBW strips and bulbs), Samsung leak and motion sensors and a Centralite plug on ZigBee … everything works pretty smoothly and reliably (so far!). I also had one Cree bulb that refused to factory reset (the engineers that come up with the turn on off x seconds for umpteen times should be flogged!) … it was simpler to replace that bulb with EcoSmart as well. Now on to the Modes!! :slight_smile:

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I have the following 4;

  1. Vacation (lock-ed down, siren/alerts for motion or doors, power off for garage door, etc,)
  2. Sleep-Night: Lights and alarm sounds if any of my doors or locks open, no motion detection.
  3. Away (in town, like stepped out to the store, work, etc. Just notififcations if motion or doors open)
  4. Home (Someone from my family is home)

Curious, what automations do you have for the granularity for Morning, day evening, night?

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Mostly just light intensity/color. At night the overhead lights don't come on in the bedrooms, but nightlights do come on throughout the house (based on motion). I also shut down outlets and turn on others for devices that will be in use depending on the mode (devices that have "vamp" draw get shut down). Also, ceiling fans; the bedroom fan is tied to temperature and mode and so is the living room fan.

The guest room/guest bathroom aren't tied to any automations, my guests have to use remotes. Although, I am considering a "guest mode" so I can set automations to off in guest areas when I have visitors.

I like it a little warmer in the mornings than the afternoons so the heat will come on when I get out of bed, although I live in the desert now so this hasn't happened much...

For Away-work (I imagine is like your vacation) everything is powered down and the thermostat is set to a large window.

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I want to use Mode Manager more but while I can say Ignore time change and ignore presence change if a particular mode is set, I can't do this for the switches:

I wish I could ignore the mode change with switches when my mode is Vacation. Why? The vacation mode I use to trigger a lighting routine while I'm away. However, when I'm out of town I still have someone come to my house to check on my cats. So the alarm is turned on/off while I'm away. Unfortunately this means the minute someone changes the alarm that's the end of my Vacation mode. Anyone know a way around this?

I use modes in conjunction with scenes and RM to manage my lights for multiple input methods. I only use the modes as time of day segments. There're four people living here, so event driven modes like movie, party, guests don't work so well. So I have Morning, Day, Evening, Night, they're switched by mode manager to fit mostly my wife's schedule, she deserves a little consideration for all she puts up with. I have scenes to define the light settings for each room for each of the four modes and I use transitions to ease the lights from one mode to another. I use Rule Machine to make simple action only rules that activate scenes by mode. So I can call that action only rule from a switch, button, or another rule without having to specify the devices, color, CT, or level because all that information is pre-defined in the action only rule.
So modes become a handy way for my lights to know what they're supposed to do whenever they get triggered.

Right now I'm using Day, Evening, Night, Movie, and Bedtime. I'm in the process of setting up motion sensors all over and lights will come on with different values depending on the mode. For example, in the kitchen Day will be brighter than Evening or Night. With Evening, and Night there is also an ambient light that comes on. For movies lights dim to low settings with blue and green hues primarily.

I also setup two motion zones for each room. One with a five second delay (shortest) and one with a ten minute delay. Under most modes I use the ten minute delay so that the lights don't turn off unexpectedly. When the mode is bedtime the lights use the short delay as I'm probably just getting up to do something quick. Bedtime also turns the lights on to a low setting. For example, Bedtime/kitchen just lights up the ambient light at 1% when there is motion. This gives you enough light to see to get around without blinding you.

I'll likely add some Guest and/or Party modes to again manipulate the way the motion lighting is handled under those special cases.

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I think is useful when the Modes do not change when we are Away, otherwise all scenes can be operating when we are at Home or not, and we do not want that right?

Just my opinion.... I found the way is designed correct.

The solution you mentioned is correct as well and a good way to avoid the Away behaviour, everything depends on our needs.

Best regards

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I keep it simple. I just use Home and Away. Both are set with presence. I only use automations for lighting and HVAC control. Away turns off all lights and sets HVAC to Away (raising cool set point or lower heat set point). Anyone coming home causes Home mode to be set and lights to turn on and HVAC back to home mode.

I have a few exceptions. And they are, you can't trigger a mode twice, so I check for all presence devices to see if one comes home and turn on the lights. That way everyone gets light when they come home.

Another exception is ecobee doesn't allow have a "real" Home mode. You see the schedule in ecobee and the timeframe within the day are set to sleeping, home or away (with their appropriate set points). The problem is when you are really home and the away schedule is currently set. Ecobee can get a resume schedule but that's not the same as a real home mode. I am using the Ecobee Suite and it has a "Work at home" mode that watches for the away schedule to occur on the ecobee and checks for the presence of devices and overrides the mode back home.

I also have a " We have visitors" presence device that basically overrides the mode to home. I turn on the virtual presence device on a dashboard or via Google Home or Alexa when the in laws are here so lights and HVAC stay set as if we are home.

Also I don't use HSM, which adds it's on mode complexities.

Came up yesterday in my YouTube recommendations. Now I know how to configure modes when my butler is home alphabetizing my scotch collection. :wink:

I would really like a video on the Mode Lighting App, please.


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I have reduced my modes to just Home and Away.

I have two virtual switches for my wife and myself for vacation.

The rest of my automations work of time of day or require a poke from Alexa.

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Any suggestions on best ways to simulate "nesting" modes?
E.g. Home, Away, Sleep and Vacation are important for me as discrete modes, but I'd also like to incorporate mornings and evenings for better lighting scenarios, but they would need to really be able to accommodate Home and Away. Not sure if that makes sense.
I've avoided doing that do to complexity, but all the comments above make me really miss out on what I could do with more granular day-time mode changes.

I accomplish this by using a combination of scenes and a virtual dimmer. The dimmer indicates the progress through the day, 1 being middle of the night and 100% being full day. This is independent of what mode is in use. It allows me to adjust the mode (if not in away) but also adjust lighting to be as granular as I want. I could program 10 different "steps" into the range or just 4 (what I currently use). The dimmer percentage has different impacts on the lighting if I am home or if I am away. Since this also impacts my blinds, I have a separate switch that indicates if its summer or winter. A very complicated solution but it works for me. Maybe someone else will find it useful.

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Very interesting, so do you map scenes to each of the 4 stages you have? And all of your automated light controls activate these scenes or does each trigger of a light have a rule that checks what their vallue should be based on the dimmer state?

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