Is it ok to cap load side of my smart switches?

I have a bunch of TP-Link Kasa smart switches installed in my house and am now moving over to Zigbee Smart bulbs so I can control color temp of the lights.

I’d like to keep my existing TP-Link smart switches because everyone in the house like to use the physical switches to turn the lights on and off.

I just tested this and it works, but I want to know if there are any safety concerns. I reconfigured the wiring of the switch so the wire going to the light is now hooked into the line side of the switch (so there is always power to the light) and I put a wire nut on the load side so it is not connected to anything.

I then used Node Red and the node-red-contrib-tplink palette to create an automation that watches the status of the switch and if it is switched on it turns the zigbee bulbs on, and when it’s switched off, it turns the zigbee bulbs off.

Other than up to a one-second delay between turning the switch on/off and the bulbs being triggered it seems to work well.

Are there any safety issues with this? Is there a better way to do this besides buying all new smart switches designed for this?

Depends where you live. All wiring codes require some form of isolation switch, in some cases this must be a wall switch, others are OK with the lighting circuit CB.

Think about a person replacing the light. Are they likely to flip the CB or the switch to turn off the power before replacing a bulb?

Having said that my electrician had no issues doing it for me but I’m pretty sure it’s against the wiring rules here.

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I’ve done this in a few cases. I’m in Indiana, in the States, and electrical code is fairly lax. Over in the UK, an electrician will lose their license if they do it. So by all means, check your state electrical code or ask an electrician first.
Like you, I find that people have a hard time overcoming the trained response to flip the light switch. It was either make the switch a dummy which activates a programmed response or get one of those light switch covers that prevents you from flipping the switch. There are also combination switch cover/automation/scene controllers available but that’s redundant to your already existing smart switches.