Currently I have a simple HA setup, based on hass, running on an RPI4, with a Aeotec Z-Wave hub.
I am controlling some relays, switches and some devices LED lighting.
I want to extend this system with a temperature sensor network.
I have already purchased something like twelve Aqara temperature / humidity sensors, and an Aqara HUB.
Today I tried to install my Aqara HUB, but after hours and hours of frustration, I gave it up.
(I couldn’t even set it up properly with their native mobile app, let alone integrating in with HA.)
So I have given up on the Aquara HUB, and now I am looking for a new HUB that will work with my existing sensors.
As far as I understand the situation, the Aqara sensors are ZigBee sensors, so I am considering getting
a ConBee II USB stick.
Will I be able to use that stick with my sensors? Will I be able to run the deconz software on the same RPI4 host that I am currently using for HA?
I would guess that this should work, but if possible I would like to avoid another false try.
Thank you for your help:
I have 3 of the Aqara temperature/humidity sensors working with my ConBee II. The only router devices I have are Sylvania Smart+ (LEDVANCE) bulbs and light strips. The HA host is an ancient PC running Ubuntu 18.04 with a supervised HA installation.
The Aqara sensors work most of the time, but sometimes they drop from the network and don’t always find their way back. Re-pairing has always solved the problem, and then sometimes they work for a month or two without issues. I haven’t yet pinpointed why sometimes they have problems - could be general Zigbee issues with my setup or something specific to those devices… still figuring that one out. I know they’re reported to be picky about what device ends up being their parent in he mesh.
The only ZigBee nodes in my network would be these sensors. Maybe I need some router nodes just to relay messages? I was hoping that the sensors can connect directly to my ConBee II, but maybe I was too optimistic?
That’s likely gonna depend on your specific RF environment and where you devices are located/oriented.
For example, I have a motion sensor outside under the eve of my house in the driveway and many times the parent it ends up with is one of the lights in my kitchen, which is 40-50ft away, through multiple interior walls and an exterior wall with lots of metal/glass in the direct path. There are several other repeaters that are half the distance to the sensor, and likely have much stronger signals. The sensor reports an LQI value of 255 with the light in my kitchen, though.
On the other hand, I have a lightbulb in a (metal) recessed fixture that’s 20ft from a repeater with direct line-of-sight, and it couldn’t maintain a reliable connection with anything I tried.
If you have less than 35 or so devices and they’re all located fairly close (20-30ft ish) to the ConBee, you may be able to get away with just endpoints and no router devices. My advice is to get the ConBee and a few devices and experiment. One thing I’ve found useful in experimenting is to be able to move the ConBee around to try different placements. I’m using a PC, so it’s a little harder to move the whole thing, so I use a USB-over-Cat5 extender, which lets me put the ConBee pretty much anywhere in my house.
Reporting back on this.
I have installed the sensors with ConBee II, and everything works great.
Thanks for the feedback, everyone.
@csillag did you have any issue with the humidity sensor dropping off the network as reported by Erik?