Home Automation - Smartkit

riscbroker

Expert Member
Joined
Sep 29, 2006
Messages
2,127
Not sure how Alexa handles it but I use Home Assistant with Google Home for voice alerts, announcements etc
 

Neville

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 13, 2006
Messages
221
I don’t think you would expect the device to show under Alexa for it to talk to Alexa.

It would rather see Alexa in Ewelink as a device so it can use it as a speaker basically.
Since all my other Sonoff switches and lights are visible in Alexa I didn't think of it the other way around, but you make sense. Having a quick look in eWeLink, I don't see Alexa (or my Echo Dot) as a device...will have to see how to link it from that direction.. thanks!
 

PhireSide

Honorary Master
Joined
Dec 31, 2006
Messages
11,812
Hi chaps

I just want a sanity check before I pull the trigger here and any input would be appreciated.

We moved into a new house a few days ago and the one of the first things on the to-do list is replacing the yellowed, cracked switches.

I was initially looking at smart switches by Tuya/Qualitel/Sonoff/Vizia, knowing full well that I would need a neutral wire for them to operate. I've looked behind two of the 9 light switches in the house and haven't found a neutral just yet. So I think it is safe to assume the other seven switches also won't have a neutral wire pulled in.

Should I bite the bullet and pull neutral wires in, or go for the units that do not require a neutral? I see Eachen has a model that requires no neutral, and is a few rands cheaper than the equivalent one that requires a neutral - so going this route I would save around R700-R800 plus not having to pull neutral wires through for the light switches (about another R250 per drop).

Are there any downsides to the neutralless units that I am not aware of? I have already replaced all the bulbs in the house with LEDs (mix of E27, GU10 and some LED floodlights - the biggest circuit probably has a load of around 80w) but I see that they do include a capacitor that helps if you have a bulb that flickers or doesn't turn off properly - will this capacitor need to be installed on each light bulb or only on one bulb per circuit?

TIA :)
 

powermzii

Expert Member
Joined
Jun 4, 2007
Messages
4,860
Hi chaps

I just want a sanity check before I pull the trigger here and any input would be appreciated.

We moved into a new house a few days ago and the one of the first things on the to-do list is replacing the yellowed, cracked switches.

I was initially looking at smart switches by Tuya/Qualitel/Sonoff/Vizia, knowing full well that I would need a neutral wire for them to operate. I've looked behind two of the 9 light switches in the house and haven't found a neutral just yet. So I think it is safe to assume the other seven switches also won't have a neutral wire pulled in.

Should I bite the bullet and pull neutral wires in, or go for the units that do not require a neutral? I see Eachen has a model that requires no neutral, and is a few rands cheaper than the equivalent one that requires a neutral - so going this route I would save around R700-R800 plus not having to pull neutral wires through for the light switches (about another R250 per drop).

Are there any downsides to the neutralless units that I am not aware of? I have already replaced all the bulbs in the house with LEDs (mix of E27, GU10 and some LED floodlights - the biggest circuit probably has a load of around 80w) but I see that they do include a capacitor that helps if you have a bulb that flickers or doesn't turn off properly - will this capacitor need to be installed on each light bulb or only on one bulb per circuit?

TIA :)
Our house also doesn't have a neutral - learnt the hard way by installing a Sonoff that needed one and nothing worked, luckily nothing blew up either :). I have the Eachen units you mentioned - currently have them on 4 light switches and they work great. You install the capacitor on one light in the circuit.

The Eachen ones also come in through Ewelink and are visible in Google Home and Home Assistant as well so you have the full scheduling and other functionality that comes with the Sonoffs.

Edit: Bought mine from Eiferer - such great service - have used them 4 or 5 times with no issues at all. Generally next day delivery in Gauteng
 

PhireSide

Honorary Master
Joined
Dec 31, 2006
Messages
11,812
Our house also doesn't have a neutral - learnt the hard way by installing a Sonoff that needed one and nothing worked, luckily nothing blew up either :). I have the Eachen units you mentioned - currently have them on 4 light switches and they work great. You install the capacitor on one light in the circuit.

The Eachen ones also come in through Ewelink and are visible in Google Home and Home Assistant as well so you have the full scheduling and other functionality that comes with the Sonoffs.
Thanks for the reply - that is great news. I think I am going to pull the trigger on these then. I currently run Google Home so my setup is still quite mild, but hoping to get it properly setup in due course.
 

powermzii

Expert Member
Joined
Jun 4, 2007
Messages
4,860
Thanks for the reply - that is great news. I think I am going to pull the trigger on these then. I currently run Google Home so my setup is still quite mild, but hoping to get it properly setup in due course.
Oh the only thing (cosmetic) is they only come in white and the face plate might be slightly smaller than the old ones - our old switches were black so had to get approval to go ahead :ROFL:
 

PhireSide

Honorary Master
Joined
Dec 31, 2006
Messages
11,812
Oh the only thing (cosmetic) is they only come in white and the face plate might be slightly smaller than the old ones - our old switches were black so had to get approval to go ahead :ROFL:
Ah that's not a problem, but thanks for the heads up.

I see they are backordered on Eiferer and also on Geewiz - seems they are more popular than I would have imagined? I prefer the white ones myself, so it's no big deal. I saw some reviews online where the glass plate is white, but the border is black - but from the pics these seem to be white all around so it doesn't make a difference
 

mrafiq1

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 8, 2008
Messages
339
Our house also doesn't have a neutral - learnt the hard way by installing a Sonoff that needed one and nothing worked, luckily nothing blew up either :). I have the Eachen units you mentioned - currently have them on 4 light switches and they work great. You install the capacitor on one light in the circuit.

The Eachen ones also come in through Ewelink and are visible in Google Home and Home Assistant as well so you have the full scheduling and other functionality that comes with the Sonoffs.

Edit: Bought mine from Eiferer - such great service - have used them 4 or 5 times with no issues at all. Generally next day delivery in Gauteng

Bought the Eachen ones for my place as well from Geewiz. Works great. Well worth the money spent.
(From my experience you have to install the capacitor on the first light (1st gang on switch) otherwise you will have disco lights.) :)
 

alqassam

Expert Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2014
Messages
4,015
Our house also doesn't have a neutral - learnt the hard way by installing a Sonoff that needed one and nothing worked, luckily nothing blew up either :). I have the Eachen units you mentioned - currently have them on 4 light switches and they work great. You install the capacitor on one light in the circuit.

The Eachen ones also come in through Ewelink and are visible in Google Home and Home Assistant as well so you have the full scheduling and other functionality that comes with the Sonoffs.

Edit: Bought mine from Eiferer - such great service - have used them 4 or 5 times with no issues at all. Generally next day delivery in Gauteng
Which capacitor are you using? I have old push to dim and used an old school halogen lamp as the first bulb if I don't all the the other bulbs stay lit.
 

powermzii

Expert Member
Joined
Jun 4, 2007
Messages
4,860
Which capacitor are you using? I have old push to dim and used an old school halogen lamp as the first bulb if I don't all the the other bulbs stay lit.
These came included with the devices... Not sure of model number or type

141b57a7b539ca0b52b3a15a4e675997.jpg
27e2f563606d65be583ab8a95485fd94.jpg
 

Mista_Mobsta

Expert Member
Joined
Jan 22, 2015
Messages
2,440
It's a struggle. We keep losing people. Have about 4 months left in kitty plus existing contributions and then we either have to let the guards go or reduce salaries. So trying to convince others to contribute.

Hence me trying to add value so there is more of a sell.
Bit of a necro but we have the same sh*t with people being penny wise pound foolish in our neighbourhood! People can't afford R50 per household (based on 70% contributing) per month to close up 3 access streets and have 24hr guarded patrols in the area with boomed gates and camera monitoring by the security company doing said patrols...people are such ****s!!
 

semiautomatix

Honorary Master
Joined
Nov 9, 2005
Messages
11,914
Bit of a necro but we have the same sh*t with people being penny wise pound foolish in our neighbourhood! People can't afford R50 per household (based on 70% contributing) per month to close up 3 access streets and have 24hr guarded patrols in the area with boomed gates and camera monitoring by the security company doing said patrols...people are such ****s!!
It's all fun and games until they're the ones hijacked in their driveway.

Anyways, just glad in don't have to deal with that sh*t any more.
 

xrapidx

Honorary Master
Joined
Feb 16, 2007
Messages
39,320
Bit of a necro but we have the same sh*t with people being penny wise pound foolish in our neighbourhood! People can't afford R50 per household (based on 70% contributing) per month to close up 3 access streets and have 24hr guarded patrols in the area with boomed gates and camera monitoring by the security company doing said patrols...people are such ****s!!
I think there are more determining factors than just money.

I won't do it in our street because of how the "street committee" has been run over the past couple of years. I will also take big exception to any camera having a view into my property.

I have also spent a **** ton on my private security already - so my house is already less appealing to most of the others in the area. There is no quick getaway if you make it in.
 

SauRoNZA

Honorary Master
Joined
Jul 6, 2010
Messages
40,759
Hi chaps

I just want a sanity check before I pull the trigger here and any input would be appreciated.

We moved into a new house a few days ago and the one of the first things on the to-do list is replacing the yellowed, cracked switches.

I was initially looking at smart switches by Tuya/Qualitel/Sonoff/Vizia, knowing full well that I would need a neutral wire for them to operate. I've looked behind two of the 9 light switches in the house and haven't found a neutral just yet. So I think it is safe to assume the other seven switches also won't have a neutral wire pulled in.

Should I bite the bullet and pull neutral wires in, or go for the units that do not require a neutral? I see Eachen has a model that requires no neutral, and is a few rands cheaper than the equivalent one that requires a neutral - so going this route I would save around R700-R800 plus not having to pull neutral wires through for the light switches (about another R250 per drop).

Are there any downsides to the neutralless units that I am not aware of? I have already replaced all the bulbs in the house with LEDs (mix of E27, GU10 and some LED floodlights - the biggest circuit probably has a load of around 80w) but I see that they do include a capacitor that helps if you have a bulb that flickers or doesn't turn off properly - will this capacitor need to be installed on each light bulb or only on one bulb per circuit?

TIA :)

The problem might be the LED lights staging sort of on and flickering a little when the switch is turned off.

This happens to me, but not my mate’s place.

They throw a little resistor (or some such) in the box for you to install…on the neutral wire in the roof which defeats the entire purpose.

So what I would recommend is start with one and try it out before buying the whole lot.
 

Neville

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 13, 2006
Messages
221
I re-linked it as an alarm and now the notifications are coming through on eWeLink..yay! Thanks!

Now to figure out why the Alexa is not seeing it under its Smart Devices section...
UPDATE

So it seems that Sonoff sensors (like the doorbell button/alarm) is not integrated into the Alexa eWeLink skill (yet...hopefully). Only lights and switches it seems.

Thus I have Sonoff doorbell linked to Sonoff RF bridge and sends me notification on the eWeLink app. Useless as a doorbell if I'm not home or not within hearing range of my cellphone?!

So what do I need to make some noise e.g. a chime of sorts when the Sonoff button is pressed and triggers to RF bridge? Will something like this work?
 

ebendl

Expert Member
Joined
Sep 27, 2004
Messages
4,422
UPDATE

So it seems that Sonoff sensors (like the doorbell button/alarm) is not integrated into the Alexa eWeLink skill (yet...hopefully). Only lights and switches it seems.

Thus I have Sonoff doorbell linked to Sonoff RF bridge and sends me notification on the eWeLink app. Useless as a doorbell if I'm not home or not within hearing range of my cellphone?!

So what do I need to make some noise e.g. a chime of sorts when the Sonoff button is pressed and triggers to RF bridge? Will something like this work?
You should be able to buy any cheap doorbell that works with 433 Mhz. E.g. https://www.takealot.com/bbl-wireless-doorbell/PLID49433587

Reason why I think this should work is because I was able to use that transmitter with my 433 Sonoff RF bridge as an 'input', so I would imagine that the bell part should also work with the RF bridge?
 

riscbroker

Expert Member
Joined
Sep 29, 2006
Messages
2,127
@Neville - the RF bridge AFAIK just converts 433MHz signal to WiFi. You could use a sonoff Basic or SV and an appropriate buzzer/bell/chime/lamp/whatever then set up a scene within eWeLink to link the two. Or just set up a Home Assistant instance to handle everything, you don't even have to flash the Sonoffs.
 

PhireSide

Honorary Master
Joined
Dec 31, 2006
Messages
11,812
The two gang Eachen light switch arrived today from Geewiz and I finished installing it a while ago.

The setup is a bit strange as the switch itself resides in the living room, and controls the lights in the living room (4x GU10 LED) and the adjacent garage (1x CFL).

Initially I had some troubles where the switch would just freeze and turn all the lights on and needing a reset at the circuit breaker. I decided to put the CFL on the first gang and also installed the capacitor on it as the LEDs had some flickering when they were turned off.

I saw the neutral wire was touching the CFL bulb holder's metal casing so I'm not sure if that had anything to do with the erratic switch behaviour from earlier on. I remedied the neutral wire that was touching the housing and installed the capacitor and it seemed to be behaving again.

I made a separate SSID for the switches as they weren't happy with the dual 2/5GHz SSID I was running. At a later stage I'll drop them into a VLAN and isolate them from my internal network.

There is a lead time of 14 days for the 1 gang switches that I need for the rest of the house, so once they arrive I'll get them installed and working. By that time I should have the VLANs up and running too.
 

powermzii

Expert Member
Joined
Jun 4, 2007
Messages
4,860
The two gang Eachen light switch arrived today from Geewiz and I finished installing it a while ago.

The setup is a bit strange as the switch itself resides in the living room, and controls the lights in the living room (4x GU10 LED) and the adjacent garage (1x CFL).

Initially I had some troubles where the switch would just freeze and turn all the lights on and needing a reset at the circuit breaker. I decided to put the CFL on the first gang and also installed the capacitor on it as the LEDs had some flickering when they were turned off.

I saw the neutral wire was touching the CFL bulb holder's metal casing so I'm not sure if that had anything to do with the erratic switch behaviour from earlier on. I remedied the neutral wire that was touching the housing and installed the capacitor and it seemed to be behaving again.

I made a separate SSID for the switches as they weren't happy with the dual 2/5GHz SSID I was running. At a later stage I'll drop them into a VLAN and isolate them from my internal network.

There is a lead time of 14 days for the 1 gang switches that I need for the rest of the house, so once they arrive I'll get them installed and working. By that time I should have the VLANs up and running too.
Yeah they definitely dont like the merged SSIDs - also had to setup a separate 2.4ghz only SSID. Glad it sounds like you managed to get it all sorted though. What networking kit are you running btw?
 
Top