Z-Wave Network Questions

I've been experimenting with location of a new z-wave device. It's located outdoors in a pool equipment area, about 40' from the indoor Hubitat. I couldn't include it when it was mounted in a convenient place, so I added an intermediate device.

The first time I included it after adding the intermediate device I saw it was hopping from the intermediate device. It had a great RSSI (+15 db).

I tried various spots in the pool equipment area. After a few unsuccessful attempts to turn on/off the device, the red LED started flashing on the device. Even when I moved the device to the area that had the great RSSI, Hubitat could no longer communicate with it.

If communication attempts fail, does Hubitat attempt to remove it from the network? If so, how many unsuccessful attempts are allowed before it gets removed?

After removing the device from Hubitat and resetting it to factory default I put it in the high signal strength area and included it again. This time it got included without a hop and signal strength was -2 db.

What does Hubitat use to determine the best route? Minimum hops with a minimum signal strength? Maximum RSSI? Other?

I got back to what I wanted by again removing it from Hubitat, factory resetting, and placing the device where (apparently) a direct signal doesn't reach. I'm now back to getting the one hop which should provide much better RSSI based on the relative geometry of the hub, intermediate device, obstructions, and the new device.


Hubitat doesn't determine routes. The route is determined by SiLabs protocols, which are mostly a mystery.


Ok, so, I don't what happened when I was no longer able to communicate with it even when moved in the "best RSSI" position. I won't worry about it unless I seem something like that occur again.


I think the pool filter casts a pretty solid "RF shadow".

A few inches change in location makes the difference between great RSSI and no communication at all.

Makes sense based on eyeballing the line of sight from the locations to the intermediate device. The filter is full of water which probably blocks the RF. The "no communication" location has the pool filter between both the Hubitat and the intermediate device.

I think losing communication was also caused by using the Gen6 driver for the Gen5 device.

The "shadowing" definitely exists. But, even when in an high RSSI position, communication sometimes quits working or is at least very unreliable--eg only 1 in 10 on/off requests are successful.

When I switched drivers I get solid results--but only when hopping through the intermediate device and out of the shadow area behind the pool filter.

On a side note you could add a repeater like this outdoor plug somewhere if you don't already have a repeating device nearby.. should help strengthen things a bit..



I added a wall switch to do the repeating--it got the RSSI up very well. But the device was so busy reporting voltage and current, it missed the on/off requests. Tried to change the reporting frequency and power change reporting thresholds, but couldn't do that. Probably for the same reason. The device was too busy sending data to reliably receive commands.

There's another thread on the details:


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