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I recently bought some smart bulbs (these) and I installed them. Now every time I flip the light switch it turns them off and I can't turn them on again via the app but instead I have to flip the light switch back on.

My question is, are there any good (mostly cheap) smart switches that could turn the bulbs on and off. Or is there a way I can wire some basic smart switches to do the same thing. I thought of these switches (or something like these) but I'm asking for your opinion.

I know that I can't just put a basic smart switch because that would just cut and release the power to the bulb whenever I pressed it and it wouldn't work the way I want it to work.

If it helps, I live in the EU (230V) and I have 3 wires on the current light switch.

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    Your regular switch is turning off all power to the bulb - effectively as if the bulb doesn't even exist. You need a smart switch that can talk to Alexa/Google/etc. to control the bulbs. They do exist but can be tricky to find as more often smart switches advertise that they can be controlled from Alexa/Google/etc. and then control ordinary bulbs. But do not get the AliExpress stuff. You need switches properly certified for use in your area. Actually, that kind of stuff is fine if it is "plug in and remote control". But for hard-wired stuff you need to make sure it is top-quality. Dec 29, 2021 at 13:53
  • Old-style switches physically cut power to the bulb, so if you are using smart bulbs you must leave the switch on 24x7. If you can't figure out this concept, you really shouldn't be opening up electrical boxes. No offense but at your skill level, get professionals involved. Dec 29, 2021 at 23:50
  • @Harper-ReinstateMonica I turn off my smart bulbs with regular switches because I bought them for dimming and colour changing, not for turning on and off remotely. Also most smart bulbs don't handle power cuts, which I get daily, very gracefully, so I turn my bedroom bulbs off at night, rather than have the power cut and then turn on. I have a one-gang two-way switch which is connected to all my lights in series, and then the individual lights are controlled from my phone.
    – thelawnet
    Dec 30, 2021 at 9:41
  • @manassehkatz-Moving2Codidact Ok thank you.
    – Tkalcec87
    Dec 30, 2021 at 14:23
  • @Harper-ReinstateMonica Yes, I know that they have to be on 24x7 and also I have skills with wiring stuff..
    – Tkalcec87
    Dec 30, 2021 at 14:23

1 Answer 1

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That's how a smart bulb works. You turn it on and off via the app/digital assistant.

I have what looks to be the same bulbs but with what I believe are hundreds of different brands sold; these will be straight out of Shenzhen.

In this case therefore a 'smart switch' is substituting for a traditional switch, so instead of breaking the live wire to the light as with a traditional switch, instead the switch is essentially an 'always on' WiFi client, where pressing the switch is programmed to send an 'off' signal to a specific bulb, or group of bulbs.

The big problem with so-called smart lights is that turning lights on and off via a smartphone is actually incredibly stupid a lot of the time, in that the affordance of a light switch is much better. So in your case you have several possible solutions:

  1. fish out your phone from your pocket (?) and tell it to turn on/off your light
  2. invite Jeff Bezos (or Google) to record your every waking moment with one of their plug-in devices which listens for commands, so in this case 'Alexa turn off the kitchen light' works as long as you have one of these devices in every room (note: you can probably set your phone to listen for such commands as well, so you might be able to get it to work in your pocket)
  3. source some kind of Android device, such as a smartphone, which you use purely as a switch, perhaps with the app open all the time.
  4. install a smart switch.

Your smart switch is straight-out-ofShenzhen with minimal or no compliance testing. This one is NOT what you want as this essentially is a circuit breaker for traditional dumb bulbs, and in this case it will likely breach your electric regulations in that it is not earthed either.

Here your bulbs are very cheap Chinese types; for the 'smart bulb smart switch' you must consider the protocol. There are:

  • Philips Hue
  • Zigbee
  • ZWave
  • Wifi - myriad implementations

Yours are listed as Tuya, which is very common. This uses the 'SmartLife' app, which unfortunately is OEM and given a useless overlay of 'Denver' or whatever by the reseller, so it's not as transparent what you're actually using as it could be.

The actual switches are listed on the Tuya website

https://solution.tuya.com/category/84009?type=mass

but you will have to buy one with some random brandname on it - Denver don't seem to have put their name on one. There are two main solutions direct wifi (however I can't see whether this actually exists), and Zigbee. Zigbee uses 1/4 of the power of wifi, so the Zigbee switch, which will require a separate (plug-in) Tuya -> Zigbee hub, can just be stuck on a counter or taped to the wall, since it takes only a button cell battery.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I5S9BDX-d-Y

And once you install the Tuya Zugbee hub you can use something like this https://zigbeealliance.org/zigbee_products/zigbee-remote-control-zyct-202/

There is also a protocol with various libraries such as this one

https://github.com/jasonacox/tinytuya

and checkout e.g. more general projects such as https://www.home-assistant.io/

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  • ok thanks, I found these, would these be good too? hub switches
    – Tkalcec87
    Jan 3, 2022 at 9:11

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