How To: Automatically Turn a Smart Bulb On/Off with a Sensor | SmartThings

How To: Automatically Turn a Smart Bulb On/Off with a Sensor | SmartThings


There may be times where you want to have your lights turn on when you enter the room or turn off when you leave. This can be done by using a motion sensor and any smart bulb that can be connected to SmartThings.

There are many ways this can be done, but in this example we'll focus on two: Using the Smart Lighting App and Z-Wave Associations. If you have both Inovelli devices, we recommend using Z-Wave Associations as the devices talk directly to each other allowing for faster processing time with your automations. If you do not have both Inovelli devices, you'll have to use the Smart Lighting App (no biggie, it's a great app). 

Using the Smart Lighting App

This method is used when you do not have two Inovelli devices (or any Inovelli device). What you need in this example is a motion sensor and smart bulb. It does not matter the brand, just that they're both able to be connected to SmartThings. In this example, we'll use the Inovelli 4-1 Sensor and an Ilumin Smart Bulb in the SmartThings App (not the Classic one). When you enter the room, the motion sensor will pick up motion and turn on the bulb. Then after 5 minutes, the light will shut off if no motion is detected.

Open up your SmartThings App and click on the Menu (three lines at the top left):

Click on the, "SmartApps" icon and search for Smart Lighting:

If you don't have it listed, click the (+) sign and find it:

Once inside the Smart Lighting app, click on, "New Lighting Automation" to create a new automation. Then follow the screenshot below:

Here's how it's setup:
  1. Which devices do you want to control? = The smart bulb you want turned on/off (in this case we chose the Fan Light)
  2. What do you want to do? = Turn On (you can also turn on and set level and in some cases, choose the color)    
  3. Select Trigger = Motion
  4. Which Motion Sensors = Choose your motion sensor (in this case we used our 4-1 Sensor)
  5. Turn on when = Select, "Motion Starts" (you can also select when, "Motion Stops")
  6. Turn off after motion stops = Toggle this on if you want the bulb to turn off after motion is no longer detected
  7. After this many minutes = Select if you want a delay after motion stops (in this case we chose 5 minutes)
Click Next and then Done.

Using the Z-Wave Associations

This method can be used if you have two Z-Wave devices. What you'll be doing is bypassing the hub and allowing the devices to speak to one another directly, decreasing the processing time and increasing the speed. In this case, we'll use the Inovelli 4-1 Sensor and an Ilumin RGBW bulb (any of our bulbs can be used here -- just remember the Group #'s in the below instructions).


  1. Start by installing the proper device handlers: SmartThings Device Handlers
  2. Next install the Z-Wave Association Tool (remember it's two pieces)


After the device handlers are installed, we need to make a quick adjustment in the settings of the 4-1 Sensor. Please click on the 4-1 Sensor and then click on the three dots at the top right and select, "Settings". Then scroll down to where it says, "Send Basic Set on Motion Send a Basic Set report to devices in association group 2" and turn it on.

Now, go back to the main menu and click on the three lines at the top right of the screen:

Click on the, "SmartApps" icon and search for the Z-Wave Association Tool you installed:

Once inside the Z-Wave Association Tool, click on, "Create New Association" and fill out the screen like this:

Here's how it's setup:
  1. Source Device = What triggers the Destination Device to action (in this case it will be the motion sensor since it's what's going to tell the bulb to turn on)
  2. Which capability? = Select Motion
  3. Motion Sensor = Choose your Motion Sensor
  4. Destination Device = What takes action based on the Source Device
  5. Which capability? = Select Switch / Dimmer / Bulb
  6. Switch / Dimmer / Bulb = Select your Bulb       
  7. Group Number = 2 (2 = On/Off)
Last step is to triple press the button on the back of the sensor to wake it up and have it send/receive commands (so that it knows it is associated to the switch).

As always, any questions, let us know!