With the big three, those being Alexa, Apple Home Kit, and Google Assistant, you’ll be able to access the full depth of Lutron’s features. There are a few different ways that you can take control of your Lutron Caséta system. No matter which one of these you end up picking, it all starts with Lutron hub. You can think about radio communications like a city street. In this case, Wi-Fi would be the busiest street in the neighborhood. There’s so much traffic that goes over Wi-Fi that there are often traffic jams that prevent this particular street from working the way it should.

And, if none of those are what you’re looking for, there’s always smart bulbs. TP-Link’s motion-activated Kasa Smart Wi-Fi dimmer gives you immense control over how its motion- and light-sensing features work. Why reach for a light switch when you can have the switch turn on the light as you approach?

Yes 700 series have made things much better but there’s still a huge difference in practical use when it comes to 700 series devices and Lutron. It’s the only competitor to Insteon that avoids popcorning, and it’s extremely reliable when installed correctly. Lutron does lighting and HVAC only, Z-Wave as a myriad of oddball devices like door locks and mouse traps. I have a Caseta smart bridge two Pico’s and two automated blinds. Speaking just for myself, any new Zwave devices I buy right now are all series 700.

The advantage of Z-wave supported product is the distance between which they can connect to a hub. Unlike ZigBee products, Z-wave devices can connect to the hub from about a couple of hundred feet away. Z-wave devices might also offer a more stable connection since it operates on a radio frequency that isn’t used very much, so there is less traffic. I was going crazy with one of my switches that had no neutral.

They have a pleasing design and for lack of a better description, they just work. The downside is that you can expect to pay roughly $45 to $50 per switch if you go with Lutron, and you need a hub. That adds up for someone like Gareth who has 30 switches to replace. If you own your home, go ahead and rip out those switches and replace them with something better. Forgive me for intruding but there is a HUGE price discrepancy between 700ZW products and Lutron (RA, Caseta, Homeworks etc.) not to mention the capabilities of 700ZW go way beyond those of Lutron. It’s the look, feel, and operation of the devices that plays a large part in how great something is.

Bluetooth smart lighting is simple, because you don’t need a hub or a connection to your home network. That isolation also makes it secure, because you must be within about 30 feet of the switch to pair with it. The other major limitation of Bluetooth switches is that they can’t be controlled by smart speakers or smart home hubs, which generally rely on one of the other wireless protocols described here. You can control Lutron Caséta devices via Lutron’s app, with voice commands spoken to smart speakers, and from mobile devices anywhere you have broadband access.

The major downside is the need for more thoughtful planning of the remaining z-wave network if you plan to use z-wave locks and thermostats. Whether or not this is a real downside for you is dependent on what all devices you plan to use. A 4,000 node network and wifi-like ranges are progress. As for zwave, it isn’t going anywhere and new devices are regularly hitting the market.

However, due to complexities caused by AC power, it’s not a simple problem to solve when it comes to powering LED bulbs. That’s why the options are so limited for smart switches that work with no neutral. You can control multiple scenes, smart bulbs, and even setup smart notifications using the onboard LED.

The only way to truly know whether you have a neutral wire or not is to turn off the circuit, remove the wall plate and switch, and check the switch box. What are the other devices that operate on this particular set of FCC regulations? We’re looking at google 4 doodle 2015 devices like wireless key fobs and garage door openers. This meant that these particular frequencies were wide open for Lutron to start operating their smart light switches. Caséta smart switches include dimmers, smart light switches, and smart plugs.

What about adding a capacitor in parallel with the light bulb ? I’m not sure if that works with LEDs, a lot of smart switches I see on sale doesn’t require hubs. I think that’s a huge plus if you’re able to connect directly to wifi instead of using additional gateways. Houses built before 2011 weren’t required to have a neutral wire for switches, per the National Electric Code. However, most built after 1980 may have them anyway.