The brain of a home automation system is a smart controller, commonly referred to as an intelligent hub. It is, in a nutshell, the brain of the smart home.
Another popular communication protocol found in smart devices is Z-Wave. All smart gadgets, particularly smart controllers, can now connect with one another thanks to this technology.
To control these Z Wave devices, you’ll require something like the top Z Wave controllers listed below due to the following characteristics:
It is crucial to check that Z Wave products and controllers are compatible before buying them. This is due to the availability of Z Wave-only controllers, Z Wave, and Z Wave Plus compatible controllers, with the latter offering the best compatibility.
Since all Z Wave products are wireless, including controllers, ensuring that they have a long-range is essential for flexibility. Higher-end devices may have a range of up to 500 feet, which should be adequate for most users. Entry-level devices may have a range of up to 100 feet or 150 feet.
You have a wide range of options when buying Z Wave controllers in terms of the numerous features they offer. Depending on the Z Wave controller you select, you can use it to control other Z Wave devices, lighting, acting as a switch, and much more.
Z Wave controllers obviously depend on these factors, but there are still a lot of other factors to take into account. As a result, by the time you reach the conclusion of this list, all of the top Z Wave controllers will have had all of their crucial specifications and variables fully explained. You will also find a comprehensive “Buying Guide” to assist you in making an informed decision.
Best Z-Wave Hub Controllers of 2022
Samsung SmartThings, 3rd Generation
Hubitat Elevation Home Automation Hub
FIBARO RGBW Controller 2 Z-Wave Plus
GoControl WA00Z-1 Z-Wave Scene-Controller Wall Switch
FIBARO Z-Wave Plus Scene Controller
Aeotec Z-Wave Smart Home Hub
The only function of the gadget is to act as the control center for your smart home. This one provides a huge selection of intelligent devices that are extremely compatible.
Samsung SmartThings also supports the Z-Wave, Cloud-to-Cloud, Zigbee, LAN, and Bluetooth communication protocols.
Your smart home can be easily and far more effectively managed using the SmartThings smartphone app.
No matter where you are, notifications and status updates will be sent to your smartphone or another smart device. Any time, from any place, a user can operate any connected device.
This device comes with SmartThings Routines, enabling you to precisely tune actions while customizing them, either automatically or with a single command.
The smart controller supports voice instructions via Google Home, Alexa, or SmartThings. In addition to this device, which is powered by an outlet and four AA batteries, you also need a WiFi router with an ethernet connector and an internet connection.
The Hubitat Elevation Hub has significantly raised the bar for home automation. This one is compatible with almost all widely used protocols, including Zigbee and Lutron.
Additionally, it contains built-in Zigbee and Z-Wave radios, an Ethernet cable, a 5 Volt @ 1 Amp US 120V power supply, and more.
Users can quickly sign up for Hubitat Elevation Hub if they have an Amazon or Google account. All management tasks can be carried out using the web-based interface once the sign-up process is complete.
This hub has a quick setup that takes very little effort to finish. After the design is finished, the smart hub is not connected to the internet.
This function makes sure that the performance output is flawless and lag-free.
It is simple to automate your home to your preferences and convenience using the Hubitat Elevation Hub.
In this situation, the Hubitat Elevation hub supports Alexa, IFTTT, Rachio, Life360, and Nest.
The device may be connected to many other smart devices, including Zen, Aeon, Philips, Samsung SmartThings, and many more. You can automate even the smallest chores with the help of the Hubitat Elevation Hub, which has the capacity to manage hundreds of different types of devices.
Fibaro’s Z Wave controllers are ideal for you if you want a Z Wave controller for your home appliances and lighting but not for use with other Z Wave devices.
The RGBW Z Wave controller from Fibaro is a great option if you want to utilize Z Wave to control LED strip lights in your home. Because it supports both Z Wave and Z Wave Plus devices, it is also highly flexible in terms of the gadgets you may use with it.
Since this Z Wave controller actually has a reasonable range of up to 164 feet, you can easily alter your lighting whenever you need to.
GoControl’s Z Wave controller is incredibly economical because it is one of the newest and smallest brands of Z Wave devices in comparison to the other accessible options.
For those on a tight budget, the GoControl WA00Z-1 Z Wave controller is the most affordable option available. This entry-level Z Wave controller, which is intended to be mounted on your wall as a smart switch, only supports Z Wave connectivity; Z Wave Plus is not supported.
Fortunately, for the price, you can obtain a respectable range of up to 130 feet, which is always a benefit.
Fibaro also produces standard Z Wave controllers, which are extremely adaptable and portable if you require a Z Wave controller for controlling other devices.
The Fibaro KeyFob Remote is one of the tiniest and most compact Z Wave controllers on the market. As the name implies, you can easily operate Z Wave and Z Wave Plus devices with this keychain-sized Z Wave controller.
Similar to the previous Z Wave controller, this one has an impressive range of up to 164 feet for its size. In fact, the same 2-year warranty is included with this Fibaro Z Wave controller, making it perfect for prolonged use.
An intelligent smart home hub that supports a wide range of connection properties and is highly compatible with a wide range of smart devices.
Samsung SmartThings capability is ensured by the Aeotec Smart home hub, which can also act as a SmartThings hub.
The major control center for all of the automation and intelligence in a smart home is the Z-Wave Aeotec.
You may systematize your everyday activities, keep a close eye on what’s happening in your home, and control a variety of smart gadgets from a distance.
The Aeotec Home Hub makes it simple to connect a variety of devices, including an air purifier and a light. Additionally, you might develop automation that will enable you to significantly reduce your electricity costs.
Due to its compatibility with a wide range of other smart home products available on the market, this device makes it incredibly easy to set up an automation system in terms of interoperability.
All gadgets that support WiFi, Z-Wave Plus, APIs, and Zigbee 3.0 are compatible.
The Aeotec home hub is easy to install. To get started, download the SmartThings app to your smartphone and then follow the on-screen prompts.
These smart home hubs work with voice control systems like Samsung Bixby, Alexa, and Google Assistant. By fusing voice protocols with the seat, users may access a number of features and manage their smart home devices.
Buying Guide for the Best Z Wave Controllers
Z Wave is one of the best interfaces for managing smart home devices and appliances. In addition to having a good range and being very effective, Z Wave devices may also create a large network of interconnected devices.
To help you manage the many potential Z Wave devices in your house, we’ve put together a list of the best Z Wave controllers. These many Z Wave controllers each have a unique collection of features and standards to aid you in selecting the finest one. Check out this comprehensive buying guide for the best Z Wave controllers if you’re still unsure.
Verify a Z Wave controller’s compatibility with the rest of your Z Wave devices before looking at its performance metrics or supported features. This is because Z Wave and Z Wave Plus devices are the only real alternatives that are currently on the market. Fortunately, almost all Z Wave controllers work with both Z Wave and Z Wave Plus, giving them a wide range of applications.
You have a wide range of options when looking for a Z Wave controller for your smart home system in terms of the functions they offer. Making sure a chosen Z Wave controller is suitable for your needs requires carefully examining these many functions.
Although the majority of Z Wave controllers are designed to manage the functioning of other Z Wave devices, some of them may also be able to manage the lights in your house or act as a power switch when activated. You can select the Z Wave controller that best suits your needs because they are all based on the same technology.
Z Wave accessories, like Z Wave controllers, operate wirelessly when it comes to connecting to other devices, thus figuring out their range is essential. This makes it possible for your home to have a sizable Z Wave network and for you to easily use all of your smart devices without running out of power.
Range ratings of up to 100 feet or up to 150 feet are attainable with entry-level Z Wave controllers, which should be adequate for the majority of users. Some Z Wave controllers have a range of up to 500 feet, providing you with a lot more performance and flexibility if you need something more potent.
Since Z Wave is thought to be very energy-efficient, many Z Wave controllers come with built-in batteries. This indicates that you can use them entirely wirelessly without a power source. Additionally, checking the battery life of your Z Wave controller’s built-in battery is a smart idea if it has one.
Due to the high efficiency of Z Wave devices, many Z Wave controllers can have battery life ratings ranging from a few weeks to a few months on a single charge. Additionally, as you could anticipate, it is usually ideal to have a Z Wave controller that is practical and multifunctional when buying one for your home.
You want to be sure that any smart home device you buy, including Z Wave controllers, will last as long as feasible. You should review the warranty that came with your Z Wave controllers for the same reason. Thankfully, almost all Z Wave controllers come with a one-year, two-year, or even three-year warranty. Some even have a three-year warranty for additional reliability and peace of mind.
What Makes Z-Wave Good for Smart Hubs?
Why is Z-Wave suitable for smart hubs? The key capabilities and features of Z-Wave technology hold the key to the solution. Z-Wave is excellent for smart home systems because of these capabilities.
Even though they are different brands and models, the smart controller can still communicate with or connect to other smart devices, such as smart doorknobs.
The smart controller works with many other smart devices thanks to Z-Wave. Thanks to the Z-Wave Alliance’s accreditation.
Multiple Devices Connection
Various smart gadgets can link to a Z-Wave controller.
You may mix and match various smart sensors, lightbulbs, outlets, and other gadgets. This enables you to use the Z-Wave controller to centralize control of your smart home system.
How Do Z-Wave Controllers Work?
You can link all of your smart home devices with the Z-Wave controller. They might include smart appliances, outlets, dimmers, doorknobs, sensors, appliances, and a range of other devices.
The smart controller will help to centralize your home automation system. Z-Wave can be used as a talking medium for communication between the controller and all smart devices.
For instance, a smart light sensor can alert the smart controller that the room is dark, triggering the smart lights to turn on. This is just one example of the various ways the smart hub can help you manage your home.
The ability to centralize control over your home automation system is one of the best benefits of a smart controller. With simply the smart controller, you will be able to manage, monitor, and control all of the other devices from any location.
Using a mobile phone application, you can manage a variety of appliances at home. You can check the status and receive updates using the program.
In this case, the smart controller acts as the brain of a smart house.
FAQS About Z-Wave Hubs
What is a Z-Wave Hub?
Through an internet connection, a Z-Wave Hub provides remote access to the Z-Wave network for use with PCs, laptops, tablets, and smartphones. It handles and regulates a wide range of Z-Wave devices.
What is a Smart Hub?
Your smart home’s nerve center is known as a smart hub. The presence of a smart hub enables remote management of the smart devices and allows them to communicate with one another.
How is Z-Wave Useful?
Z-Wave provides communication and response between the devices and sensor-enabled items. You have a lot of control over things like fans, lights, security systems, door locks, window coverings, thermostats, and valve controllers.
How does Z-Wave work?
To ensure simple communication between the smart gadgets and other products linked in your house, the Z-Wave network creates a wireless web network.
Why do you need a hub for Z-Wave?
Z-Wave is an entirely closed-off communication system designed for smart devices. It is based on a local network that is only accessible locally and doesn’t require an internet connection. A Z-Wave controller (also known as a “smart hub”) builds and oversees that network, therefore a Z-Wave device cannot be utilized without one of them.
The use of Z-Wave technology has many benefits. These networks employ mesh networking, which enables individual smart devices to operate as repeaters to increase the hub’s range while using lower frequency radio waves to assist reduce interference and better penetrating obstacles.
It’s vital to remember that Z-Wave merely offers a way for smart devices to communicate with one another. The capabilities of your Z-Wave hub and its software will determine what you can do with those devices and the automation rules you can design.
How many Z-Wave devices will you have?
Although there is a strict limit of 232 devices per network for Z-Wave, it’s also crucial to take the software side of things into account. The software of your hub defines the complexity and type of automation rules you’ll be able to run, as well as the user interface you’ll use to handle your smart home.
This is distinct from Z-Wave itself, which merely offers the standards necessary for communication amongst all of your Z-Wave devices. It’s fair to say that cheaper models will have lesser processing power and memory, which might become a problem if you have many devices trying to perform things at once. Your hub is simply a computer that executes that software.
Paying more upfront for the additional power and capability is a wise investment if you intend to develop a comprehensive smart home. The only exception to this rule is Z-Wave adapters that plug into computers, as the capabilities of the computer rather than the Z-Wave controller will determine this.
The many Z Wave devices in your home are connected and controlled by a Z Wave controller, as the name suggests. They are therefore perfect for a smart home setup where you want all of your equipment and appliances to be smart.
Because of this, we’ve already discussed a few of the best Z Wave controllers in this post, along with all of its details and features. We recently released a full buying guide for the best Z Wave controllers to help you in your search for the best Z Wave controller.