Etekcity Wireless Remote Control Electrical Outlet Switch for Household Appliances

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6 comments

  1. 33 of 40 people found the following review helpful
    2.0 out of 5 stars
    If you are planning to use for home security or critical monitoring while away, beware of risks!, December 12, 2015
    By 
    W. Munro (San Jose, CA) -
    (VINE VOICE)
      
    (REAL NAME)
      

    This review is from: Samsung SmartThings Home Monitoring Kit (Tools & Home Improvement)
    I've had the 2.0 hub and system for about 2 months. I've added few light controlls and remotes, to get going and evaluate the system for home automation. In general, for home automation purposes, I like what I see, and really enjoy the well-designed app and interface.

    If you are considering using the SmartThings system for critical home security or monitoring/automation while you are AWAY from home, I would strongly caution against it.

    I was away on business travel last week, and suddenly found my Smarthings hub offline with no explanation. Later, I received an email from Smartthings stating that there had been a "platform issue" which caused a subset of hubs to go offline. (READ: Completely stop working, with no ability for you or anyone else to fix it remotely. Can only be fixed by you physically being present and resetting the hub with the reset button.).

    So, I started asking myself ... do I really want to be using such a system to monitor the security and safety of my home? When 1 bad line of code by 1 engineer can take down any hub anywhere in the world?

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  2. 10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
    3.0 out of 5 stars
    It is best for techies, January 17, 2016
    By 

    This review is from: Samsung SmartThings Home Monitoring Kit (Tools & Home Improvement)
    I rate the SmartThings ecosystem as fair at this time (Jan 2016).
    I think it holds promise as a platform. I applaud the open approach and
    efforts to allow third-party and consumer customizations.

    It is best for techies. Casual users may be frustrated by
    it as they attempt to bring in more devices and orchestrate
    more automation.

    In my opinion, it is a short-comming that the only real interface
    is via a smartphone or tablet.
    I'd much prefer a PC based interface to configure the automation.
    An app is fine for turning a device on or off but makes a poor
    interface for configuring the whole system.

    As for the smartphone app itself, I find the UI to be poorly designed
    and a contributer to user frustration. I also have frequent errors.

    To really use the hub and system, you will need to read up on the
    internet (read from several different sources). The Smartthings website
    itself is rather light on instructions (they have some, they just
    wave their hands more than give specific details).

    My current system has:
    - 2 Philips Lux bubls connected via a Hue hub and the Hue smartapp
    - an Amazon Echo connected via the Alexa smartapp
    - 2 Cree connected bulbs
    - 3 Z-Wave appliance modules.
    - 1 SmartThings motion sensor
    - 1 SmartThings multi-puprose sensor

    An example of what I've struggled with is the motion sensor. It has
    gotten "stuck" in a constant motion detected state.
    I've had no luck determining how to monitor the temperature at
    the motion sensor or multi-purpose sensor to alert me (by flashing a light
    or sending a text or email) of crossing a temperature threshold (up or down).

    I doubt I'll grow my system at the moment. I may look into the developer
    website and information to see if I can solve the temperature notification
    problem for myself.

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  3. 34 of 35 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Excellent home security and automation opportunity, October 28, 2015
    By 

    This review is from: Samsung SmartThings Home Monitoring Kit (Tools & Home Improvement)
    Nov 5th 2015 -
    Smartthings app was updated to v2.0.5 today, and it brings in multi user support!
    Yay! That solves one issue I had.

    I also bought a GE Link LED connected bulb for under $15. GE Link, Wireless A19 Smart Connected LED Light Bulb, Soft White (2700K), 60-Watt Equivalent, 1-Pack
    Connected easily and responds instantly to on/off triggers.

    Really liking what home automation can do... I am a very happy Smartthings Customer today!
    This product is now 5 stars for me!

    Oct 28th' 2015 -

    Been about a week+ since I bought this kit.
    I was on a lookout for sometime... the battery support to keep hub running in case of power loss, and less cloud usage to process signals, made me take the leap, as soon as smartthings v2 was released.

    I am a first time smartthings buyer... so it's been a learning experience for me, on how to use the kit to make the most out of it.

    Here is how I am using it right now...
    - One door sensor went on the main door, the second one on garage door. They both also measure temperature... which is great!
    - The motion sensor was placed in the living room, corner wall. I use it to disarm my house when any motion happens after 5:30am. Obviously for alerts when home is in armed (away) mode.
    - The switch...it has a heat blower connected to it!
    It's turned on when the motion sensor measured temperature is at 64 degrees. It turns off when the temperature reaches 68. This allowed me to reduce heat setting on the home thermostat and hopefully save on heating cost.

    Some learning's
    - There are cheaper zwave devices that can do the same job, that are much cheaper and they integrate with smartthings. So not sure if this kit is a runaway deal!
    - Smartthings mobile presence is a hit-miss. It relies on unreliable phone location setting to arm/disarm house. There are just too many misfires, because my phone's gps location determination is unreliable. I wish there was a easier way... like being connected to home wifi or not.
    - AT this time you can not add multiple family member phones to smartthings. I had to log in with my account on my wife's phone. I think it confuses the hub too.
    - There is no easy tasker integration (which i use a lot on my phone)...learn coding, then maybe.

    Overall
    - I am happy i bought this. Gives me peace of mind when i am out, that home is monitored
    - I am planning to buy more devices as I learn how to use them to either save money or effort by automating.
    - It would become much better if smartthings can sort out the multi user login issue, and allow mobile presence detection via wifi connection.

    Overall - I recommend you buy it if your on the fence,

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  4. 117 of 121 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    Perfect for when you just really, really, really don't want to get out of bed!!, January 14, 2015
    By 
    Mirabeau (NEW YORK) -

    Verified Purchase(What's this?)
    This review is from: Etekcity Wireless Remote Control Electrical Outlet Switch for Household Appliances (Learning Code, 5Rx-2Tx) (Tools & Home Improvement)
    These remote control outlets are fantastic!

    Pros:
    - Really easy to set up. Takes less than 30 seconds to set up each one.
    - Range on the remote controls is better than advertised (and they work without direct line-of-sight).

    Even though these things work even better than expected, I'm knocking off one point for the two cons below (neither of which is a huge deal, just a little inconvenient):

    Cons:
    - These remote control outlets are just a little too big, so if the other plug you are trying to fit in a shared wall outlet is anything other than just a simple plug, it won't fit.
    - The batteries are a weird size. I'm not sure what they're actually called, but they're kind of half-length AAAs. Like I say, not a big deal, but not the kind of things you'd probably just have lying around when it comes time to replace the batteries.

    TIP:
    - The remote control has a very basic design, and in the dark, it's hard to tell which is the top and which is the bottom. I've found that tying an elastic band (or a hair band) around the bottom (see photo) is handy for knowing which way is up when you're fumbling around in the dark.

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  5. 297 of 311 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    How to cancel or unlearn, August 16, 2013
    By 
    D. Schott (Manchester, NH United States) -

    Verified Purchase(What's this?)
    This review is from: Etekcity Wireless Remote Control Electrical Outlet Switch for Household Appliances (Learning Code, 5Rx-2Tx) (Tools & Home Improvement)
    Overall we like this product. The documentation describes the learning process and mentions cancel but does not describe how to unpair an outlet from a given remote button.

    Etekcity did reply to my question on this with the following info:

    We apologize for the poor instructions. Unfortunately, pairings are stored in the outlet units, so you would need to reset any outlets that are paired to the 2nd remote. To do this, remove the outlet from the socket, press and hold the learning button, and then plug the outlet back in, while holding the learning button. Keep holding it until the light flashes several times quickly. Then you can re-pair the outlet as desired.

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  6. 291 of 296 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Some Review Criticism Clarifications, November 30, 2013
    By 

    Verified Purchase(What's this?)
    This review is from: Etekcity Wireless Remote Control Electrical Outlet Switch for Household Appliances (Learning Code, 5Rx-2Tx) (Tools & Home Improvement)
    This is a review of the Etekcity® 5 Pack Self Learning Wireless Remote Control Outlet Light Switch with 2 remotes.

    Although it is possible that I received a different or updated model, I thought I should correct, or rebut, some of the misinformation that I read in other reviews.

    After reading all of the reviews on this product, I nearly didn't buy it for a few of those reasons. But my unit arrived in perfect condition, and performed flawlessly.

    BATTERY
    Several comments were made about the battery/battery compartment. My compartment opened and closed easily. The battery went right in with no trouble, although I did have to insert it straight into the compartment with no tilt in either direction. My unit came with two batteries, one for each remote.

    ON/OFF BUTTONS
    Several reviews said that the on/off buttons were actually just one button, and that if you pushed the "on" or "off" button, the unit would just go to the opposite state. In other words, pushing button 1, on or off, could be used to turn the device on and off. This is not the case with my unit. If I push the on button, the device turns "ON" and if I push it again, the device still stays "ON". The only way to turn a device "OFF" is to push the off button, just as it is labeled.

    SWITCH SIZE
    Yep, the switch is big. I am using all five switches for various Holiday lights in our home. In two of those cases, I was able to use another two prong plug in the second outlet below the device. In another case, I had a three pronged plug that I was using in the spare outlet, which had to be relocated, as it would not fit after installing the remote switch. But, very easy to just add the remote switch into a short extension chord, and the problem is solved. I bought the pack of 5 short chords exactly for this reason.

    RANGE
    All five of my devices are on the first and second floor of our home. So to test for range, I went into our basement and back to the furthest wall away from the devices. They all worked fine. I would estimate that I was between 40 to 60 feet away from all five devices, and had to go through at least one floor, and a few walls.

    OVERALL IMPRESSION
    My overall satisfaction with this product is very high right now. Everything worked exactly as the manufacturer described.

    After the Holidays, most of these units will be relocated to my basement workshop where they will be subject to much higher loads and more demanding use. I will use one on a dust collector (about 12 amps draw), one on a vacuum, and even one on a strobe light so my wife can summon me if she needs to, without me cutting my hand off if she yells at me to come to dinner. I will think of many uses for this great product.

    I will try to remember to post my experiences after a few months of use.

    UPDATE 8/9/2014

    Well, although the units work fine for many applications that require about 10 amps or less, they would not work for my 1.5 HP dust collector. This was to be expected as they make no claim that it will support high loads.

    They do work for many other things though, like the strobe light that I mentioned above. So now my wife just hits a button upstairs and my strobe light in the basement lets me know she needs me to come up!

    My opinion of this product is still very high, and I may be ordering another set soon.

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