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Some very cheap sensors on sale, < $10 USD.

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    Originally posted by Michael McSharry View Post

    1. On a Linux or Windows computer your network you need to have a zigbee interface. There are multiple, but the simplest is the USB one that I can provide for $10. On this computer the service Zigbee2MQTT is run.

    2. On some computer (Linux or Windows) on your network you need to run a MQTT broker service. The most commonly used one is Mosquitto. Many places on the web that show how to install it. It actually does not need to be on your LAN, but somewhere on the WAN to which you have access. I run two locations in different states with one MQTT broker.

    3. On some computer (Linux or Windows) on your network you need to run HomeSeer3.

    4. On some computer (Linux or Windows) on your network you need to run mcsMQTT HS3 plugin.

    The communication among 1,2, and 4 is IP using MQTT protocol. The communication between 3 and 4 is IP using the HS3 API.

    Zigbee networks typically consist of zero or more routers and one coordinator. I flash the USB Dongle so it acts as a coordinator. I have also flashed them to operate as router. Quite often mains-powered devices, such as a light bulb, will also act a a router as well as a node. The routers can be anywhere within the Zigbee RF range and improve the total distance that may be covered by Zigbee.

    From mcsMQTT you can selectively bridge HS devices (or via events) to specific Zigbee nodes or groups so it is transparent at the user level that the devices are Zigbee vs. any other technology. Communication is bidirectional so HS can control and HS can obtains status.

    Yesterday I collected the supported Zigbee devices from the three main players for non-cloud operation. It is at

    I do not have door sensor. I do use many water leak sensors that were put in service in early January. I think they are suppose to run a year or so on a cheap 2032 button cell. They report battery status and are still reporting above 90%. Report is delivered about once an hour.
    I also have a Zigbee remote (RGBGenie) that uses the same battery. I really have not used it that much but have had to replace the battery already after about two months. I don't recall what they advertised for battery life, but it was more than two months.
    Thanks for taking the time to answer my question in great detail. I should have stated that I already am using your excellent MQTT plugin on my hs3 system.


      I was in the exact same spot. I had used X10 for about 20 years and I had a pretty solid setup. Even as zwave started taking over I hung on to about 15 old X10 Hawkeye motion sensors because they worked well reliably,
      While I have depreciated my X10 powerline several years ago I continue to use my X10 RF with W800 inerface and homebrew antenna mounted on garage ceiling. I have played with Iris Zigbee motion/temp sensor and find it provides the same detection speed as the hawkeye. I have not looked at others that are at a lower price point than the $25 Iris. I also use the X10 palmpad (16 buttons) when I do maintenance on irrigation so I can roam the yard and turn on/off valves. As long as it continues to perform well I have no reason to modernize.

      I do agree that zigbee is the technology that is best suited for battery-operated devices. I find WiFi to be the best value for mains-powered devices such as lighting.