If you have Philips Hue lights (or any other smart light bulbs) in your home, you’ve no doubt come across people turning off their light switches randomly. Here is how you can solve this problem.
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With any smart bulb, you can control them by turning the bulb on and off, not the wall switch. Because of this, you have to keep the light switch on all the time. If only you (or maybe also a spouse) lives in your house, you know to keep the light switch on and not mess with it. However, if you often have kids or guests, keeping this switch is not that difficult.
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You can post a note saying «don’t mess with light switches» but that looks pretty tacky. Instead, there is a really great solution for this.
Enter the light switch guards
They are usually sold to people with motion detecting signal lights where the switch needs to be on 24/7, or for switches that control major appliances that you don’t want to accidentally turn off (for example, our dishwasher has a switch that is next to the garbage disposal switch). — Yes!).
However, with smart bulbs becoming more and more popular, these security guards now have a whole new market. They also come in different styles.
If you have regular toggle switches, you can get guards that screw right into the switch cover, providing a semi-permanent solution. However, one side is open so you can flip the switch if necessary without removing the guard.
There are also magnetic fences that use the existing light switch cover screws for attachment. These guards completely cover the light switch and if you ever need to flip the switch, you can easily remove the guard with a quick tug and put it back on.
If you have «decorator» light switches that use a toggle switch instead of a toggle switch, you’re still in luck, as you can buy decorator switch magnetic shields.
If you prefer a semi-permanent decorator switch solution, you can get those that screw in too, and they have small holes at the top and bottom so you can still operate the switch without unscrewing the protective cover.
Obviously this won’t stop someone from still flipping the switch if they really this wants, but adds a barrier that will at least remind people that the switch is off in some respects.
And frankly, sometimes it’s important to be able to get to that switch. Maybe your Echo or Google Home isn’t working properly, or you left your phone in another room and you just need to turn on the lights. The point of most of these covers is to prevent people (and even you) from accidentally brushing them off out of habit.
Get Philips Hue Dimmer Switches as a replacement
Now that your light switches are covered by security devices, you have one drawback: you need to control your lights through an app on your phone or voice assistant if you don’t want to bypass security.
If you have Phillips Hue lamps and want a smarter solution, Philips offers wireless dimmer switches that you can place anywhere and control any of your Hue lights just like normal lighting.
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This still gives your kids and house guests the ability to turn the lights on and off, just like they’re used to with traditional light switches. In addition, the switch has built-in dimming features, which is a nice touch.
If all else fails, go with smart light switches
After all, if you’re not okay with covering your light switches or spending money on dedicated Hue dimmer switches, then your best bet is to use smart light switches instead of smart bulbs.
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Smart light switches replace your existing light switches and control your existing lights and bulbs, but the added benefit is that you can control the switch remotely from your phone and even automate it with schedules or geofences.
This is a good solution if you like your existing lamps and don’t need an extra slot for color changing lamps. Also, it can be cheaper overall as one switch can control multiple light bulbs