Ikea Tradfri Motion Sensor in bathroom

Hey guys,

I’ve searched for solutions, but so far, I’ve come up blank. My problem is the following:

  • I enter bathroom and the lights go on
  • I enter the shower and after 3 minutes, the lights go off
  • I wave above the showerstall and the lights go on again

This is, of course, not a preferred solution.

My idea was this:

  • After 3 minutes I don’t turn the lights off, but I change their color
  • if I don’t trigger the motion detecting within 1 minute, the lights go of
  • if I do trigger the motion detector again, the light go back to normal for another 3 minutes
  • Rinse/repeat

My problem is with ‘trigger motion detection within 1 minute’, without letting the lights go out from the second automation.

Am I thinking in the right direction or is there a totally other (automated/scripted) solution available.

Of course, another idea could be to literally trigger a switch, letting my system know I’m showering, therefor not triggering the ‘light off’ automation. But that’s if all else fails, really.

In my case, when motion is detected in the bathroom, the light is turned on to a specific brightness level that’s always less than 100% (the exact brightness level depends on the time of day).

If someone manually alters the light’s brightness (using the wall switch), turning it up to 100%, or any other value other than the one that was automatically set, serves as a signal to the automation that it should temporarily extend the auto-off time period from the default of around 3 minutes to 20 minutes.

So by adjusting the light’s brightness prior to entering the shower stall, one can shower without having the lights turned off for lack of detected motion. Similarly, turning on the exhaust fan also serves to extend the light’s auto-off time period.

This arrangement has served us well for over a year.

Yes, that would work also. But that would require a physical switch/device to set/change the brightness.

My goal is to not have to do that. I don’t mind waving at the sensor (which I’m doing now, while showering in the darkness at that moment), but I’m sure there’s a better way.

Thanks for your reply though! I always like reading how others fix certain issues!

If I understand you correctly, your bathroom light isn’t controlled by a smart dimmer but by a smart switch?

If not a smart dimmer or switch, how do you turn on the bathroom light if, for example, the motion sensor fails?

My lights still have old-fashioned non-smart switches I could use. Otherwise, I could use my phone to switch the lights on as well.

However, I prefer to only use the motion sensor, of course.

I don’t know your bathroom and situation when showering, but my solution to bathroom lights staying on when in the shower, tub … is in combination with a contact sensor on the door. Whenever there is motion in the bathroom while the door is closed it means that the bathroom is occupied and the light stays on until the door is opened again (3 minute countdown timer kicks in before it actually goes off or stays on of motiojn is detected again - so basically back to how your 3 minute timer also seems to work)

So if you also have a bathroom door and don’t mind closing it when getting in the shower, this might also be for you.

So it’s a smart light on a circuit with a non-smart switch? The Tradfri motion sensor controls the smart light directly.

Ah yes i know this problem well.
I dont have a working solution yet either, but i have been leaning towards using bathroom humidity spike as a way to know if the shower is in use. Detecting a spike in humidity is challenging, i have found.
Otherwise, other ideas i have thought of…

  • temp sensor on the hotwater pipe for the shower
  • water flow sensor

Both good ideas! However, the Tuya temperature and humidity sensors I bought are crap. They only update every few hours or so.

I ordered some Sonoff sensors, so hopefully I can use those a bit better!

A friend of mine had the same problem, he did a more advanced solution by setting up a temperature sensor on the hot water pipe on his water heater and that way could pin point when he was showering and then extend the time before the lights turn off.

I would just go the easy route and extend the time window the lights turn on from 3 minutes to for example 20 minutes.

I’m with you on this one, I have a sensor to detect movement, stays on for 5 minutes, just in case someone is just popping in to wash hands or something, but if the door sensor is closed then this is overridden and light stay on indefinitely. Once the door is opened again the lights turn off.

That could also certainly be an option. I also have a Sonoff door sensor coming in soon. So I’ll have options.

But, since I’m in IT, I still want to try and fix it another way :stuck_out_tongue:

i did mine simply with a door sensor. Open the door, light comes on (uses another light in the house as trigger) - then stay on until the door is opened again. KISS.

Install another motion sensor in the shower area to detect movement that your existing motion sensor can’t see. Create a group containing both motion sensors and then use the group entity as the source of motion detection in your automation.

If you are feeling really brave and you have power in the bathroom - use a human presence sensor. They work 100% in other rooms in my house, not tried in the bathroom because in mine there is no power (to be honest there’s not many power sockets in the whole house as it was built in 1662!!!)