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I did this a while back with Z-wave dry contact switch and Amazon Echo integration. Paired it with Wink and integrated into Home Assistant. Super easy if your fireplace supports remote switches (aka wall switch).
I used this [link] because I had it laying around, and it fit nicely (since I was replacing a simple one gang wall switch).
If I was doing it again today from scratch? Well, I went poking around Amazon, and was depressed that I didn't see anything cheaper or demonstrably better. One useful feature of the module I used is that there's a button on the front that will activate the relay if you don't/can't activate it through home automation
I’ve been looking into the same thing. There is one Z-Wave Dry Switch I’ve seen, and you’ll likely need a millivolt fireplace pilot system to do the actual ignition/deignition. Then you replace the manual switch on the pilot with the Z-Wave one.
I haven’t tried this myself yet, but I believe those are the pieces needed.
I did this exact thing for a friend with a newborn. Used a z wave dry contact switch on the door chime wiring and automated it through his SmartThings hub. The switch is functionally connecting or disconnecting one wire in the door chime circuit on a schedule. You just need to be able to run power to the dry contact switch and you can leave it out of the way inside the wall when it’s connected. Same method I used for multiple fireplace automations where the switch is typically just a loop closing function and not a full circuit power control.
I don't have any experience with other options. I found this which seems like it would work. The key is that you need a relay, not a standard switch.
Hopefully someone here will offer a solution. You could also try posting to /r/electricians. Someone there might know.
Here's the gist of it:
As for the cosmetics, others have alluded that the switch plate covers will not fit. However, the thread pitch is the same and so you should be able to get one screw to thread properly. I used a blank wall plate and covered the inside with black duct tape because the blinking blue LED on the switch was making me crazy when I'd watch movies. I used the top screw to hold the plate onto the Remotec switch, and then took a second screw and used a Dremel to grind it down to just the head of the screw, then glued that onto the lower screw hole on the wall plate. It looks like both screws are in, but in reality it's just the top one holding it in place.
Many fireplaces aren’t powered at the existing wall switch; it’s just a switch that closes a loop to turn the solenoid that opens the flow of gas past either a pilot or ignitor.
Something like this looks perfect, BUT while the damn thing looks compatible with Decora-style cover plates, it isn’t (it’s a little too wide).
It doesn’t come with a compatible cover plate, either.
It’s also not UL listed. :-(
If you use Home Assistant, there's actually a built in component for reading license plates. All you need is a cheap IP camera (edit, or web camera) and you're ready to go. To actually open the gate, you're probably going to want some sort of dry-contact relay, like this. You can also set Home Assistant up to send you an alert or flash a light in your home when an unrecognized car pulls up.
Remotec Zwave Dry Contact Fixture Module [link]
Garage doors work by shorting the door wires for a moment to command the door. You could use this to accomplish that to open and close a door. You'd need a tilt sensor to know your door position and figure out the logic in HA. If you tell Alexa to close the door, and it's closed, do nothing.
I'm just a random person on the internet, research it yourself.
I've read that in so many reviews. Ideally, I'd like to set it up exactly as you describe, but instead of training my dogs to utilized said button, I'd like to control it via zwave. Did you have to hack it to hardwire buttons into it, or does it provide contacts for such options?
Would such a relay: [link]
have worked in your switch setup?
This is the one I am about to order. Check out the reviews. Lots of pictures from people who have hooked it up.
Edit: Looks like it's out of stock and no idea when it's coming back. :(
But at least it looks like the one wgbm linked hooks up about the same way.
I have mine setup with:
Basically I just had to cut the wires under the fireplace going to the wall switch and place that in between with a lamp cord for power. It should be no less safe than the wall switch itself.
I have it tied into SmartThings and Alexa so I can turn it on by voice. I think it was worth it. I use it fairly often when my wife and I are on the couch watching a movie. Over the holidays I set up a Merry Christmas routine that would turn on the tree, the fireplace, and play Christmas music.
So, I have a switch on the wall that basically completes a low voltage circuit and starts the fireplace up. You can't simply replace the switch with a normal zwave switch since it would put 120V on that poor low voltage circuit.
Here is what I bought: [link]
Basically, my gas fireplace has a cavity at the bottom that houses the starter, the gas line, and a few regular outlets for the starter to plug into. I used one of the spare outlets to plug the relay into (using lamp cord I bought at lowes). Then I cut the low voltage wiring that ran from the switch to the starter and plugged the switch wiring into the relay and then plunged the starter wiring into the relay. Essentially, you insert the relay between the switch and the starter.
Works great! I can turn the fireplace on or off via zwave. I can also use the wall switch to turn the fireplace on or off!
I can take some pictures when I get home if it would make my description a little clearer...
This is probably a stupid idea, but...
Since everything is already wired up, and you seem ok with just having the one receiver as your audio source, could you just splice a Zwave relay into the speaker wire? Something like this: [link]
One relay per speaker would allow you to turn individual speakers off and on, and would be pretty easy to integrate with OpenHAB.
I used Remotec Zwave Module . Looks like amazon is sold out but I’m sure you can find one elsewhere. It was surprisingly easy. You will also need a power cord and an outlet under your fireplace to power the module. You then cut into the low voltage wires that go from your fireplace controller to the wall switch. Plug all them into the module per the instructions it comes with. Connect to SmartThings and you’re done.
Obviously make sure your gas and circuit breaker are both off before installing.
Also, a few safety failsafes that I have setup.
1. Auto turnoff at 10pm (our typical bedtime)
2. Auto turnoff when house temperature exceeds 75
3. Auto turnoff when Away mode is activated (this auto activates when wife and I are both out of the house)
It probably depends on the model of your gas fireplace but for mine it was fairly easy. I used a Remotec Z-Wave Dry Contact Fixture Module. It's showing unavailable on Amazon right now so not sure where else you could get it. You will also need a generic Lamp Cord to power the dry contact. I didn't do anything to the wall switch.
Basically, the wall switch has 2 low voltage wires coming from it and going under the fireplace. You cut these wires under the fireplace and you connect them to the dry contact. Essentially you now have 2 coming in from the switch and 2 going out to the fireplace. Then you connect the lamp cord to power portion of the dry contact and then plug it into the outlet under the fireplace (Not sure how you would do this without an outlet under there so I'd check for that first). That's it! The wall switch still works like normal and now you can control it like any other Z-Wave switch through an app or with voice. I'm not aware of anything similar that works over Wifi instead if you don't have a hub.
As for safety, it's probably safer now that I can track and disable it remotely. You can also set up automations to turn it off or notify you if left on for too long. You aren't touching any gas lines and the wires you are touching are all low voltage, I don't see why people consider this dangerous.
I did this with z-wave using this: https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B00913ATFI/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1
It does require power, but I had access to 120V under the fireplace.
I’ve used both. Can set parameters for auto shutoff for time and choose to power off switch with loss and return of power. Pricy but work well
My gas fireplace had a switch on the wall, so I thought a smart switch would accomplish my goal to add the ability to use Siri to control the fireplace. Realized the switch was a low powered one, not a normal light switch.
This wired between the switch allowed me to connect to the aeotec z wave hub and works great.
I did the same thing, but with that relay instead. It allows you to keep the light switch working.
How about rigging his chair with an Echo Dot (gen 2). Gen 2 is cheaper and has USB power so you can power from either the chair or a Mophie juice pack. Tethered to his phone for connectivity so he can take Alexa with him when he goes out?
For the garage door ...If chamberlain didn’t suck by not providing a free skill I’d suggest the MyQ for about $60. However maybe can figure out another way to open and close by voice. If he already has a Zwave hub like SmartThings wonder if you could use this relay, along with a linear actuator to press the garage button using voice. Create a routine: when I say Alexa open garage, turn on relay, which powers the actuator and presses the button. Seems like this would work and now I kind of want to find a button to press at my house to try it. Can vouch for this working just throwing out some ideas for people to weigh in on.
ECO-WORTHY 12V 2 Inch Stroke Linear Actuator 330lbs Maximum Lift with Mounting Brackets (12VDC 2'') [link]
On the high side of your $, but dry contact:
Maybe check this Remotec Zwave Dry Contact Fixture Module. It's reported as compatible. Here's a thread where someone is using it to control a fireplace: [link]
What I generally use:
Yep, the Remotec Dry Contact module is absolutely perfect for that.
You could use any z-wave dry contact module really, just don't try to use a standard z-wave wall switch designed to switch line voltage. If you somehow manage to get line voltage to the millivolt contacts for the gas valve, then you will fry it. But the Remotec one is especially good for this use case because it has extra terminals for the existing physical switch. So you can still use the physical switch to turn the fireplace on and off without it getting out of sync with the z-wave relay. Could probably do the same with a MIMOLite Dry Contact Bridge, but it's also almost $20 more than the Remotec with no other benefit in this case.
Here's a great write-up I found when I did my fireplace:
Be aware that you will still need line voltage to the module to power the z-wave radio, and that line voltage and millivolt shouldn't be wired in the same electrical box unless you have one specifically for this purpose that has a divider. I was lucky because my fireplace already had a 120V outlet underneath it for the blower, so the setup was a simple as the instructions I linked to.
I actually took it a step further since that outlet also had a separate wall switch for turning the blower on and off, and I wanted to be able to control the blower by z-wave but didn't care about controlling it with the physical switch. So I also replaced the outlet underneath with an in-wall z-wave outlet, then plugged the power cord for the Remotec into the socket of the z-wave outlet that was not controlled by z-wave to prevent a sort of z-wave redundancy, and the blower into the socket of the outlet that is controlled by z-wave. By doing this I can control the blower with z-wave and no longer with the original switch on the wall, but instead use the switch on the wall as sort of a safety cutoff to completely kill power to the outlet below which of course then kills power to the Remotec and the blower. I just flip that switch off if I'm on vacation or in a time of the year when I don't use the fireplace. Did my best with the wording, but admittedly it's probably still REALLY hard to follow. I can make a diagram if needed.
Then I picked up a z-wave Aeon minimote for 20 bucks and set the buttons to control the fireplace and blower so that guests could control everything without using Google Home or having access to my hub. My fireplace didn't have a remote originally, and the price for all three parts was still less than adding one with the added benefit of being able to tie everything into automatons through my hub(s).
EDIT: Eventually I also want to add a z-wave gas shutoff valve either under the fireplace or for the main gas line coming into the house or maybe both just as an added precaution. Then write an automation that would shut it off if a smoke detector is tripped in that room or anywhere in the house depending on where I put the gas valve(s).
Great to hear! Was thinking I needed something like this for the low voltage:
Depending on how your fireplace is ignited (i.e.-manually with a valve, match/lighter, etc) you might get away with one of these. When we had our house rewired (full gut job) I had them wire both fireplaces so that I could simply flip a switch: insta-flame. This would replace the switch but also add zwave compatibility so that anytime your fireplace is turned on, you could also set a scene to turn on the blower.
I've also seen zwave relays which you can modulate between momentary and latching so ostensibly you could control both the fireplace and blower motor with one relay. You would simply need a separate 110/220 relay to operate the blower but that would simply be an on/off situation i.e.- when the fireplace is on, the blower is on. If you went with a switch with whatever automation standard you could include a temperature gauge of some sort to turn on the blower when the room reaches a certain temperature.