Physical switch to control different items

Hello all,

This summer I moved to a new home, and with a new home, a new domotica system. I had a little experiene with Domoticz, but I realised that it wasn’t exactly what I wanted. So a Google query and a lot of reading brought me to OH. It was a big learning curve and now I have configured a lot of stuff to automate my home. For example I have a lot of light bulbs. A few Philips Hue blulbs and also a lot of Tuya bulbs. They are connected to normal light switches. The downsite of that is when you turn off a lamp by the physical switch, you can’t controll it anymore with OH. So I was thinking: I need physical switches that doesn’t turn off the power. And when thinking that, I did a few Google queries.
I noticed some nice switches from Enocean. No batteries needed and OH has a binding for that.

But now my question. Say (just theoretically) that I change all my physical switches for Enocean switches… Can I configure OH so that every switch can controll a item that can be switched? So 1 switch can controll a tuya bulb and another switch can controll a Philips bulb. Or for future purpose, a Enocean switch can controll my blinds (Somfy IO)? My first thought would be that I can be done by rules.
I think I also need some bridge for the Enocean switches?

I hope I am thinking in the right direction. And if there are other nicer options to solve my problem, I hope you will share them.

Don’t, EnOcean technology is not really up to date and has issues. Consider Z-Wave or WiFi devices.
And don’t look for “smart switches”. The switch part needs not be integrated with the switching (actuator) electronics. Way too many people decide in favor of (bad) devices because it has “nice” looks. To an actuator, you can attach ANY physical switch including your existing ones.

Of course all of these must have permanent power so you must not put them behind (in terms of wiring) a physical switch. But (almost) any actuator has another input for the switch, too. That usually directly switches the attached output. Some actuators allow to detect different types of switching such as double and triple click so you can switch different items via OH.
But that will not work for the output that is hardwired to the input (which you want to have at least one per room for emergency lighting).

I think you should spend quite some more time reading up on the physical aspects of home automation. Your view angle is …pretty limited so far.
Take your time to gather more know-how before you decide in favor of a specific technology.

To answer the question in general, yes. So long as openHAB can “hear” some event, it can cause an effect on anything it knows about asan output device.

@mstormi advice is sound though … use automation to add cleverness on top of manual controls, not as a substitute. Else you’ll be sitting in darkness when it messes up. Smart bulbs don’t really lend themselves easily to this philosophy. Maybe a remote control handset or something could cover this.

That advice depends, to some extent on the world region. For instance, I have a few smart Z-Wave switches but I think that offering is rather unique to North America.

In my jurisdiction changing switches to smart switch’s also requires an isolation point.

It is my professional opinion you leave the switches alone and double side tape something like the 433mhz switches on top of the current switch.

Sure they exist and yes you can use them if you like.
But you’re fogging the main point: you can select actuators independent of switches.
And just to rant a little bit in my spare time, you shouldn’t take North America as a bright ideal these days… no I don’t mean politics but switches.
I don’t know why but common switches in the US look like their design hasn’t evolved since the '70s.
Ok maybe because that makes for a greater surprise when they turn out to be smart, but in terms of aesthetics, most I’ve seen are just outright ugly.
I believe they now bundle it with smart tech because else noone would buy 'em any more.

1 Like

Personally, I look at the square euro switches & think they look unusual. I have also seen photos of push button switches that look like they came from the 1940s or 1950s. Differences in culture, I guess.

Here are a few examples with cover plates.

Here is a double one for bathroom light & fan.

Just for reference we can do round/squircle (rounded corners) and integrated as well.
We just provide way more choices.


1 Like

Thank you for the feedback. I think I need to get rid of the idea replace my physical switches then. It’s a logical conclusion, reading the comments.

I will deep dive into physical aspects of home automation as suggested by @mstormi.
I am still in the beginners phase of OH, so still a lot to learn.

Thanks again!

What a waste of space only to have a tiny fiddly switch knob with sharp edges to hurt yourself if you hit them in the dark. Unhandy and not even aesthetic. Yes, cultural differences.

1 Like

Less wasted space with multiple switched ganged together,

and visible screws - ugly.


Visible screws are common although some faceplates can have the screws hidden.