Doorbell integration options without video (UK) - Out of ideas

Over a year after I first looked at doorbell integration here I’m still struggling to find a solution.

I’ve spent probably the last 3 days searching for options online and remain completely stumped - am I missing some options that the community can fill me in on?

Currently
We currently have a Byron SX type wireless doorbell with a battery powered chime at the front of the house, and a mains powered repeater chime at the rear of the house.Both of the chime units are sealed units.
I already have cameras deployed, and am not looking to add a video doorbell.
There is no powered option for hard-wiring a replacement doorbell.

I’m looking to add knowledge of the doorbell being pressed to HomeAssistant.

What I’ve considered / tried previously

  1. rfxtrx USB gateway
    I failed miserably with this, both in terms of implementation and configuration and resold it on eBay. Distance to the HA host could be an issue, and I have no USB ports free on the host.
  2. Arlo audio doorbell.
    I’ve considered using this with a chime unit (we have no Arlo kit) but have ruled it out based on: latency for the Chime unit, lack of ability to disable the ‘leave a message’ functionality (has been a feature request for over a year on the Arlo forums).
  3. Sonoff RF bridge + Tasmota
    All the indications are that Byron doorbells are not supported by this combination
  4. RFLink
    I’m completely out of my depth trying to find suitable hardware that doesn’t require my (ham-fisted) assembly skills. I’d happily consider a TCP based integration using a pre-assembled / simple assembly dedicated networked RFLink host but can’t seem to locate one.
  5. Aeotec Doorbell 6
    This does appeal, however I’m aware that it is not currently fully supported (requires OZW 1.6) and I assume that in the event of the HA host being offline the chime won’t work?

I used to have a Byron SX-20T doorbell connected to an RFXTrx hub.
Was working well, but was eating the battery too quickly and the range would then not be good enough to be caught by the RFX.
I thought of hard wiring power to it, but had no camera by the door so would not see who was at the door. I eventually bought a Hikvision doorbell.
Back to your problem. Can you not get a USB hub to connect the RFXTrx hub? It’s pretty good…

I don’t have the RTXTrx hub any longer (resold on eBay) and the HA host is in the furthest point from the doorbell.

Have you thought of a 433MHz receiver and ESPHome?

A couple thoughts:

  1. Something like a chime detector.
  2. Placing and outdoor motion detector (e.g., https://www2.meethue.com/en-ca/p/hue-outdoor-sensor/046677541736) near the doorbell so that you are aware of someone approaching and not just a press. The caveat with this is the potential for false alarms depending on what lives near you (e.g., squirrels occasionally trigger mine).

Correct me if I’m wrong, but that’s going to require me to order a set of boards and then assemble them correctly, flash the software and then programme it? I’ve skimmed the esphome site several times over the last few days and have zero understanding of how to use it to achieve this.

I’m fine with flashing / programming however I have zero electronics skills and no soldering capability.
This is based on previous (expensive) experience and is one of the reasons I posted in the hope that someone knew of a source of pre-built RFLink options.

Unfortunately the Nexia is the only one I’ve ever seen of these and is only produced in non-UK frequencies.

I have motion detection from a UVC-G3 camera in the same area however the driveway is short and near a high-traffic footpath / road. Without the doorbell being integrated I would have no idea whether a motion event is passing vehicles, people, postman etc. I’m able to filter camera events using a UnifiProtect integration after the fact based on motion event score and length but this means that I could only establish a valid doorbell event 5 seconds after all motion completed.

get an ESP32, Plenty come with pins already soldered.
Get a 433MHZ receiver. I tested with this one because it had longer range, but it’s not pre-soldered. You could try this one which is pre-soldered but I’ve not tested it. Then get some jump wires to connect the 2 together, solder-free ! Finally look at this page in ESPHome to see how to capture the data

I appreciate for the suggestion, however with/without the soldering I’m still not looking together to put together something that’s completely home-built for the reasons I’ve already mentioned. Almost all our HA system is built in a straightforward manner to be as easily maintained as possible and this would go against that approach IMHO.

This may be your guy:


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For your outdoor motion detector using your Camera.
I have a similar issue with no “easy” way to monitor the actual door bell. So, I have the camera trigger all motion detection and using the Amazon Rekognition integration this allows me to define a smaller area and to validate that it’s a person.
So what happens is that all motion is detected and sent to Amazon Rekognition. It will then confirm that it is a person and they are within the box that I defined. Then send me the alert that someone is at my door.

I’ll look into this option, thank you.

I’m actually pretty happy with the motion detection as is - the camera’s more about detecting vehicles (we’ve had 6 incidents of people driving into bits of the frontage over the last 20 years :roll_eyes:) and while I’ve considered object detection I’m also trying to minimise cloud integrations - I actually spent this morning implementing firewall rules to avoid any cloud communications from our existing devices that don’t need it for HA integration).

Oh you want local only, I got ya. :smiley:

DeepStack runs locally in docker and does the same thing :wink:

Thanks all for the discussion and suggestions.
Just to wrap up this thread, I’ve finally cobbled together a solution for myself - integration completed this evening, and now I just need to install the button outside tomorrow.

Components

  1. RF receiving component kit from Amazon containing an RXB6 433 rf receiver module, breadboard, wires etc. suitable for connecting to a Raspberry Pi (£15GBP)
  2. Raspberry Pi 2b from my box of cast-offs, cables and spares
  3. Cheap doorbell from Amazon recommended by a blog for use with rpi-rf (£10)
    NB: I had to pickup a new doorbell as I was completely unable to receive signals from our existing Byron doorbell.

Integration
I rewrote a suitable Python script I found online to use API calls to HA rather than MQTT when receiving the doorbell signal, then turned it into a systemd service.
The API call tuns on an input boolean, which drives a templated binary_sensor.
Automations:

  • input_boolean.doorbell triggers an automation that records a timestamp of the doorbell push, waits 15 seconds and turns off the input boolean.
  • binary_sensor.doorbell triggers two automations:
    an automation that pushes a camera snapshot to mobiles
    an automation that streams the camera to a google display in the kitchen (if someone is home and awake, but only in the daytime).

Screenshot 2020-06-12 at 20.02.13

Hi, would you be able to share which doorbell you bought from Amazon as I am looking to do something similar with a sonoff rf bridge flashed with tasmota…

I basically bought:

  • This rf receiver kit to be used with my spare Pi (supposed to be used with Lloytron brand doorbells)

  • This doorbell