Would I be able to use a smart light switch here?

I'm unsure if I can or not. (I don't understand juicetricity that well guys)

I'm not an expert, but I don't see a neutral it looks like they are just switching the load. So my answer is no. Unless you get a switch that does not require a neutral. I am not familiar how they hook up. Sorry, not much help.

If there is no Neutral then you may be able use a no neutral switch. It depends on what you are switching. The Neutrals will usually be a bundle of whites stuck away at the back of the box. How old is your house?

The only no neutral switches I know of, are only for dimmers. I have a few Inovelli red and blacks in no neutral boxes.

If you are using the no neutral switches on LED bulbs then you may need a bypass. It is basically an additional load that is required. The Inovelli specs say your circuit must be 25 watts, I believe. So a single LED will usually require a bypass, I have only had to use the bypass on one switch I put in a closet that was on a single LED bulb. In the other places I used them the light fixtures had 3 or more bulbs so a bypass was not required. If you still have some incandescents those will work fine.

This might work...no neutral dimmer. Bulb/fixture would have to support dimming, AFAIK.

It doesn't even look like you have a ground in that box. I am definitely not an electrician, but even the part of my house w/older wiring similar to yours has a ground in each box.

It doesn't even look like you have a ground in that box.

Yeah I sent that picture to my Dad which has electrical background, he said the ground is the wires in the back

(I think it might go to a screw but I had already put it back up and flipped the breaker)

I looked up the Aqara No Neutral switch and it doesn’t need a neutral and the ground is optional. Anyone have any experience with aqara zigbee switches?

Aqara Zigbee is often not a good player directly attached to the hub. I'm not familiar w/their switches at all, but an Aqara button I had pretty much tore up part of Zigbee mesh until I removed it. Others have reported similar issues. So I'd suggest not adding one directly to your hub. @SmartHomePrimer has a lot of experience w/Aqara and runs Aqara devices via a separate hub to avoid issues.

I use my brother (general contractor) in the same way.

Me: "Hey, bro, what's this thing I found in my garage?"
Brother: It's a hammer, dummy.

He's very helpful. :wink:

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My experience is different with Aqara wireless switches.

I have some installed and have never had a single issue with them. One of them is now my main kitchen switch and possibly the most frequently used manual switch in my home. Not one single complain from my wife. It not only toggles the kitchen’s lights but acts differently depending on the time of day.

Mine is directly added to HE and I now have a mostly Zigbee home, coming from a Z-Wave / Zigbee origin, where any unreliable device is substituted.

My reason for running Aqara buttons on an Aqara hub is because they drop otherwise. End devices don't typically cause issues as they're not participants in routing data in a mesh.

I now run my Xiaomi sensors on HA and bring them back into Hubitat using this integration because they join and stay put really well with a ConBee 2 controller running on HA, but Hubtitat is where I want them to be for automations. So this works our very nicely.

I don't use the Xiaomi buttons there, since this integration cannot bring them back into HE and building a bunch of automations in HA to fix that isn't something I want to maintain. The Aqara Gateway supports HomeKit, so sync them to HE using Rule Machine. Buttons are handled differently than sensors in HomeKit, so this works out very well and it's stable.

generally a ground in a romex installation will be bare (no insulation). Could you pull out the other switch and take another picture?


And...if you have to use a bypass, it's nearly always easier to just install a dimmer module up in the ceiling fixture (which you have to dismount and mess with to add the bypass anyway), and which can be controlled by the old switch on the switch loop. Or a new push-button on the switch loop. And of course through the hub.

I find the 25 watt requirement isn't realistic. I've had Inovelli no-neutral switches not work with 5x7w = 35 w of LED. They work fine if I switch a 50-watt incandescent for one of the LEDs :slight_smile: .

(Oh—and, that does look like switch loop wiring, except there should be a wind of black electrical tape on the white wire indicating it's not a neutral (in both boxes) to help avoid confusion; last I looked at the code.)

I think that is a LED bulb issue. I just put a Inovelli switch in a bathroom that did not have a neutral. The fixture had 4 bulbs, I ordered some inexpensive LEDs, Great Eagle brand, bulbs off Amazon listed at 9W, they had good reviews. They would not work at all. They just had a constant flicker.

I took some GE refresh LED bulbs, listed at 8.5w, that I had bought at Lowes and were in another fixture with a GE dimmer that had a Neutral in the box. These LEDs worked fine, and the cheaper ones I bought from amazon worked great in the dimmer switch with the neutral.

Another option for you is a Third Reality switch. I have a couple of them and they have always worked pretty well. No need to wire anything.

The look of the switch may not work for you though, depending on the placement.

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Theres a ground in the back of the right picture...smaller diameter and spattered with paint, but its there.

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Would you go ahead and pull both switches out of the box and extend the wires so we can see more details? A picture showing where the wires are coming into the box would be helpful too.

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I have the same setup at my house and I went with Lutron Caseta with the PRO hub, will allow you to do so much more. I have them through out the hose and then get the benefit of the PICO switches to place anywhere and also use the PICO switches for other items.


You can get some great suggestions in the forum re: products that will work with or without neutral wires. And probably even accurate diagnoses re: your specific wiring situation.

But since you haven’t mentioned it, please consider bringing in an electrician to take a look and confirm what’s in there, if you haven’t thought about that already. It’s the safest option for those of us that have limited/no experience working on home electrical wiring.

It took me a while to figure out how to change my own smart switches, and that was after I learned how to properly use a multi-meter to check each switch box myself.

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May well be particular bulbs rather than in general, yes. We're clearly in the very early days of this LED lighting thing, we haven't really figured out what base requirements are and hence many of the products don't meet them.

Smaller diameter meaning uninsulated, which is pretty much diagnostic of being a ground in house wiring, yeah.

Yup, exactly.


Can you clarify what you mean by "ground in house?"