July 15, 2016
For those of us interested in home automation, this might be a familiar scenario: You’ve bought that new 4-in-1 sensor you’ve wanted for a while, and rush to unwrap the package like a kid on Christmas Day. Then you insert the batteries and make your way to your SmartThings hub to include it into your network. And then the disappoint descends: it’s a sensor that’s new on the market, and it’s more complicated to integrate it than a simple on/off device. It will probably take a while before SmartThings provides official support for it. So how do you include a Z-Wave device to your hub if it's not on the list?
This is where custom device handlers come in: community members will often develop their own code to be able to use new devices with SmartThings. They usually publish them on development platforms like GitHub and then post a link to the code on the SmartThings forum. But they don’t always include instructions on how to install the custom device handler and assign it to the device. The average user may think it’s a complicated process, when in fact it’s quite simple!
Here are some instructions that should help you get a custom device handler (i.e. that awesome new device of yours!) to work in SmartThings. I’ll be taking the Zooz 4-in-1 Sensor as an example, but this process will work for any device that needs a custom handler (you’ll just need to use a different link for the right code).
1. Log in here with the same username and password you use for your SmartThings app: https://consigliere-regional.api.smartthings.com
2. Click on My Device Handlers in the top menu
3. In the top right corner, click on Create new device handler and choose From code from the top tab menu. You'll be presented with a blank area where you can copy the code from this link and paste it in (it's always best to use the raw version of the code)
4. Next, scroll to the bottom and click Create. Now click Save, then click Publish > for me.
You should now see this device type in your list of Device Handlers
Simply exclude the device if you had included it prior to installing the new device handler. Then add the device to your SmartThings hub by clicking on Add thing > + Connect New Device in your app. Press and release the Z-Wave button on the sensor twice quickly.
Remember to keep the device within 3 feet away from your hub during inclusion — the device should be automatically discovered as the Zooz 4-in-1 sensor. Then, leave the sensor by the hub for a few hours so it can fully configure.
And that should be it! I hope this was helpful in simplifying the process behind custom device handlers. Feel free to share your questions and feedback in the comment section below!
March 14, 2017
Hi Dan, we’re glad to hear you were able to make it work. Between the 2 different URL’s, it can be kind of confusing. We always recommend to start with checking if your sensors and switches are listed under My Devices first – if they’re not there, it means you need to log in using the alternative URL to install the handler in: https://graph-na02-useast1.api.smartthings.com
March 12, 2017
Nevermind, I find out now that ST’s shards aren’t all properly tied together… I had to be sure I was in the right shard.
March 11, 2017
So I follow these instructions exactly but when it finds the device it STILL just thinks it’s a generic z-wave sensor device. The Zooz name does not appear in the “found devices” list. I have tried this with three (3) versions of ZSE40 device handler code I found out there. I see them all in my device handlers list but they don’t seem to make any difference. Thoughts??
June 08, 2017
You often ask us for recommendations: what are the best, most reliable Z-Wave motion sensors out there? The choice seems endless with new devices coming out every day. While we have our favorites, choosing the right sensor for YOU will depend on YOUR needs, lifestyle, and ideas on how to apply the product to your Z-Wave network and collection of devices. So we thought we should ask one of you to test and compare our best-selling smart home security sensors. We wanted feedback from someone who has tested and programmed lots of Z-Wave devices but most importantly, from someone who has used them in real-life scenarios at home. The comments detailed below and the invaluable side-by-side comparison chart are by Kevin LaFramboise, an expert SmartThings user and the creator of some of the most advanced and stable custom device handlers for the popular platform.
April 09, 2017
It’s easy to be wary of claims of long-lasting battery life, as so many products out there promise reliable and worry-free battery power and then fail to deliver. So when the Sensative Strips Door/Window Sensor arrived to the market – a sensor thinner than two credit cards stacked together, and featuring a brand-new kind of battery that lasts for 10 years – some of us were skeptical.
Sensative recently turned to Sony to put their product’s power consumption to the test with the help of Otii – a new energy-optimization tool that measures and analyzes the power consumption behaviors of battery-powered devices. Of its many useful features, it allows the user to pinpoint the cause of a draining battery by syncing the software’s debug output with its power readings. Otii’s findings confirmed that the battery in Strips can last much longer than 10 years with optimal configuration and network conditions.
March 14, 2017
We get a lot of inquiries from Wink users trying to connect Z-Wave devices which should "technically" work with their hub but are not listed on the device list in the Wink hub.
You can include most on/off Z-Wave products to Wink and Wink 2, including light switches, plug-in modules, dimmers, and even multi-channel devices such as our popular Zooz Power Strip which allows you to control 5 outlets individually.
Since Wink's support is not very obvious on how to include these "generic" Z-Wave devices to your network, we created this step-by-step guide with easy-to-follow instructions and screenshots to make everything super clear.
We hope it helps you enjoy your Z-Wave system even more!