Automatically turn off a light after a certain amount of time

Often times users have a room where someone forgets to turn off the light like a closet or utility room. There is a simple solution to this problem: the How-to level of difficulty is Simple.

Just follow these steps (which should work with any type of on/off switch or device that sends ):

  1. Select TRIGGERS in the outline view on the left side of the screen (or a folder under TRIGGERS if you prefer)
  2. Click on the New… button above the trigger list to create a new trigger
  3. In the Create New Trigger Action dialog that appears, give your trigger a name: for instance “Auto-off for closet light”
  4. You'll notice 3 tabs under the Name: field: make sure Trigger is highlighted (if not, click on it)
  5. Select Device State Changed from the Type: popup (this will tell us when various states that devices have, including on/off, change)
  6. Select the device you want to watch from the Device: popup
  7. On the popup directly below Device:, select On/Off State (we only want to know when the device state changes)
  8. On the popup directly below the previous popup, select Becomes On (we only want to know when the device turns on)
  9. Skip the Conditions tab because we always want this trigger to fire (you can use conditions to customize whether this trigger will fire or not)
  10. Click the Actions tab
  11. Select Control Light / Appliance from the Type: popup (we want to turn OFF the device after some amount of time)
  12. Select Turn Off on the Action: popup
  13. Select the same device you did above from the Device popup
  14. You'll notice a checkbox by the words Delay by towards the bottom of the dialog - check this box and enter the number of minutes you want to wait before the light goes off.
  15. Click OK at the bottom of the dialog.

That's it! Now, when you turn on the device, after the delay you specified, it will turn off. You can see the Trigger Action fire in the Event Log window, and you'll also see Time/Date Action that's created automatically for you fire to turn off the device. Congratulations!

A note on this How-To: if the device has a manually operated switch of some type, it needs to have the ability to broadcast it's state when physically toggled - a lot of modern HA capable switches do that, but many X10 devices don't - for those older switches, this solution won't work.

auto_off.txt · Last modified: 2019/01/26 00:10 (external edit)

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