HUSBZB-1 Zigbee Reliability vs. other options

I’ve had the HUSBZB-1 USB stick set up on a pi on a 3B+ for a while now and I’m having issues where the zigbee dies semi-regularly seemingly due to a timeout (I’ve posted the trace below). It always happens with the Lowe’s Iris plug (Centralite zigbee/zwave repeater) but not sure if that’s a coincidence. I’m trying to trace the root of the issue and was wondering what everyone else’s experience was. My thoughts are it could be the following possibilties:

  1. Iris plug is faulty (no issues with zwave repeating however)
  2. HUSBZB-1 stick is not production-ready for zigbee
  3. Time-sensitive ZHA component running within a heavily configured HASS instance is being blocked/delayed by other polling mechanisms

Any thoughts?

2018-09-20 10:45:46 ERROR (MainThread) [homeassistant.core] Timer got out of sync. Resetting 
2018-09-20 10:45:56 WARNING (MainThread) [homeassistant.helpers.entity] Update of sensor.centralite_3210l_0c3283a0_1_2820 is taking over 10 seconds 
2018-09-20 10:46:17 WARNING (MainThread) [homeassistant.components.sensor] Updating zha sensor took longer than the scheduled update interval 0:00:30 
2018-09-20 10:46:48 WARNING (MainThread) [homeassistant.components.sensor] Updating zha sensor took longer than the scheduled update interval 0:00:30 
2018-09-20 10:47:19 WARNING (MainThread) [homeassistant.components.sensor] Updating zha sensor took longer than the scheduled update interval 0:00:30

I have the HUSBZB-1 and use it exclusively for the Zigbee radio. I really don’t have any real issues.

HUSBZB-1 should be fine… probably a bug that’s been reported and hopefully fixed as of Home Assistant 0.78.

My full comments:

I also use the HUSBZB-1 stick… life was grand until sometime this summer when I started upgrading Home Assistant (HASS). I’d left it on some release older than 0.60 for a long time before that.

Once I started upgrading, I evntually realized that my Zigbee devices (two LED bulbs) were not responding after about 24 hours or so after each HASS restart. Turns out there have been a fair number of forum posts about this.

I had seen a few different suggestions, but hadn’t really attempted a fix yet.

This thread ( ZHA/Zigbee Not Working 0.61.1 ) makes me hopeful as a developer referenced a fix to a bug ( ) that sounds very much like our issue.

And it looks like this fix was first available in HASS 0.78 release on Sept 17. I’m just updating to 0.79 tonight after being on 0.77 for a few weeks, so I’m eager to see if this fixes the issues for me.

Hope that helps! Let me know if you see any difference after upgrading, and I’ll post back here, too.

I’m now running 0.79.2… home-assistant has been up for 24 hours… and attempting to turn on ZHA lights is failing…

Only errors I see:

2018-10-04 00:02:12 ERROR (MainThread) [homeassistant.core] Timer got out of sync. Resetting
2018-10-04 00:02:28 ERROR (MainThread) [homeassistant.core] Timer got out of sync. Resetting

I’m giving up. I’ve got a Vera hub on the way to offload my Zigbee and Z-wave stuff… I’ve got a different Z-wave related issue going on as well.

For what it’s worth I’ve switched all my zigbee stuff over to my Smartthings hub and I’m using the Smartthings MQTT bridge and so far everything is working great. Personally I like the idea of using a hub for zigbee/zwave that runs a separate application and only interfaces with home assistant through MQTT. Ideally the HUSBZB-1 would support a similar functionality where external zigbee/zwave applications could talk with HASS via MQTT but alas I’ll be on smartthings for the time being.

I’ve been using this with zwave and ZigBee devices with this controller for months with almost no real issues. My ZigBee devices are all motion, and open close sensors. Both Iris, and older smartthings branded devices. The controller has been solid. I will say that I’ll probably not buy many more ZigBee devices in the future though. I do agree that the ZigBee support is just not as good as zwave. For example still no battery reporting.

Using a HUSBZB-1 here as well and it works fine. Switched over from Smartthings after playing MQTT Bridge hell for a few weeks. Ironically I had issues with the ST hub dropping one bulb and now I don’t with the stick. Been solid for several months.

Yeah, I moved from smartthings, and wanted to get off it completely. I did not want to have to go through MQTT if I did not have to. Glad I pushed through with this controller.

Been moving to WiFi w/MQTT myself. Higher reliability, flexibility and lower costs.

I see a lot of people complain about Smartthings MQTT bridge but it seems like a good design to me and pairing devices was so much easier. Granted, I’d rather ween off of samsung and the cloud of course but I’ve had nothing but issues using the baked in zha component dying (seems like some incompatibility with centralite 3210-l repeaters) and zha_new is not up to speed and doesn’t support all the same devices. I know there are other zigbee options like deconz and zigbee2mqtt but there’s no way they have the same devices support as smartthings right now.

In my mind, MQTT is a great generic way of sending data back and forth to HASS that also lets you run pieces of your stack in separate processes so as not to bog down the main HASS application.

What do you mean by wifi? You mean getting rid of ZigBee?

Yes, I have some bad ZWave interference issues at times and found my calling with ESP8266 devices anyways. Only have a couple ZWave devices left and working on removing those as well as removing the last 4 Zigbee bulbs I have. No issues with those except for the states on reboots of HA combined with the most annoying feature, they don’t save their state so they turn back on after a power outage.

I’ve recently started having problems with my HUSBZB-1 stick dropping off the USB bus. Suddenly my few light bulbs stop responding to automations. Then the fix is simply pulling the stick and reinserting it then restarting HA. It’s happened 3 times in the last month so far. Hoping it’s not on the way out but if it is it’s not that much of a loss. I’ve only got a few zigbee devices anyway.

Thought I’d follow up my own response here… Several months ago I switched back to the HUSBZB-1 away from Vera. I think it was somewhere around HA 0.86 because I was wanting to try out the new Zigbee UI. I never had a problem from then on. Both Zigbee and Z-Wave on HUSBZB-1 has been great since. And the newer UI for managing Zigbee is quite nice.

One device I left on the Vera because it is not Z-Wave PLUS. The PLUS is crucial as without it, that device was causing instability on my otherwise stable Z-Wave network.

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@bsherman I just moved from Wink to HA and Husbzb-1 with on VM. For the most part running great except I for a Cree Zigbee bulb that goes Unavailable. I only have two Zigbee devices, Smartthings Leak Sensor and the Cree bulb. Everything else is Z Wave. The bulb is about 40 feet from the Husbzb-1. Do you think the distance is too far?

40 feet but with walls, wiring and who knows what in the mix? Possibly.

Zigbee was what I had the most trouble with for range issues… it shares the 2.4mhz frequency range which can conflict with WiFi, microwave ovens, etc… That said, I haven’t had many troubles for a long time, but my Sengled zigbee bulbs are probably closer to to 20 feet away (through walls).

Recently I’ve been trying out some battery powered Xiaomi zigbee temp/humidity sensors with pretty good results, though to try to make them more reliable, I added a zigbee repeater; the Sylvania SMART+ ZigBee Smart Plug was only $19 or so… not too shabby.