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I bought a Z-Wave E27 light bulb to command a lamp from my PC for specific alerts. Obviously I had to plug it into the outlet to include it into the Z-wave network.

During a few minutes it worked : I could command it on and off.

But later, commands where not successful and Domoticz told me that the signal failed, and in the Z-wave monitor my light bulb is marked dead! Later again, the signal is OK... Exclude/include didn't work.

The light bulb is far from the controller but a Z-Wave door detector is in the middle of the path (~4 meters). I suppose Z-wave is "mesh" configured so my door detector should relay the signal...

  • Is there something I can do to "enhance" the signal?
  • Are there settings in Domoticz where I can reassign the network (healing doesn't work)?
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    Is it practical to temporarily reduce the distance, and demonstrate that your issue really is one of propogation (rather than an unreliable endpoint)? – Sean Houlihane Jan 16 '17 at 11:54
  • Yes I reduced the distance (using a portable desk lamp) and it seems to run better/longer. The problem is that my problem is very random. As I write this message it's been several months I haven't used it and it works when I use it, but the question might be helpful to people with large houses. – Goufalite Jan 16 '17 at 12:13
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    If the existing door detector is battery operated, it probably does not participate in the communication mesh. To preserve battery life, usually only mains-powered Z-Wave devices will relay messages. Some companies make relay-only nodes for use in homes with reception problems, they work well. And when I have problems like these, I'll try deleting and re-adding the uncooperative device to the network. – John Deters Jan 16 '17 at 19:58
  • @JohnDeters Excluding/including device didn't work, but your point about battery-powered devices which don't relay the zwave signal is very interesting. You should put it as an answer to help future users. – Goufalite Jan 17 '17 at 10:50
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The rated range of Z-Wave devices in general is designed for indoor "perfect conditions" so if the max range of a device is 100 ft. that assumes no noise and no interference. If you have any other devices on similar frequencies or objects that may attenuate the signal, it most likely will never achieve that range. In an environment with a lot of devices (not in the same network), I've seen the range reduced by over half.

If the node in the middle is a sleeping device it definitely won't act as a repeater unless it is awake. Without getting a Zniffer trace of the locations I can't tell exactly what the issue is, but some things to keep in mind and may help (or hurt) is:

  • Sleeping devices most likely will not relay a message unless they are awake which if they are the crux of your network will be an issue.
  • More devices will make your mesh network bigger and have more paths to nodes, but more traffic (a lot of ZWave messages) will make your network nosier and harder to reliable send messages causing some messages to drop.
  • If you move devices, you should always rediscover so the controller knows the best path to a device.

Another thing to note is a device can be marked failed by the Z-Wave controller if one message failed to send.

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    Does the "rediscover" take care of sleeping devices? – Goufalite Mar 22 '17 at 6:39
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    @Goufalite only if the device is awake at the time. Some devices will have an "awake mode" that you can put them in while rediscovery is happening, but if they are the only thing linking devices in your network, it won't be a practical solution to extend the range of your mesh network. – Dom Mar 22 '17 at 14:12

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