How Do You Group Smart Lights? Full Guide
Are you turning off all the smart lights in your house one by one every night? it might be time to group your lights! grouping allows you to control multiple lights at once. In this blog post, I explore how you can group smart lights around your home.
Smart lights can be grouped together using a smart hub or an app. you can select the different lights in your house and group them by rooms or floors. for example, all the smart lights in your living room can be placed in a group. different combinations are suitable for different homes.
if you want to group your lights but have no idea where to start, this blog post is for you. I explore the different devices that can be used to group smart lights together. I also look at different combinations of smart lights for different homes. and discuss why grouping smart lights around your home can make your life so much easier.
what does it mean to group your smart lights?
If you have more than one smart light in your home, you can group them together. grouping smart lights means putting them into a category in an app. this app can be standalone or linked to a smart hub. all the lights in the group can be turned on or off, dim or change color at the same time.
For example, imagine you have three smart light bulbs in your living room. one is in a chandelier and two are screwed into fixtures in the ceiling. each bulb can be connected to an app. you can then use the app to create a group called “living room” and place each of the three light bulbs in that room.
then you can control your living room lights as a group. for example, you can select the “living room” group and turn it off. this turns off all three lights with a touch of your phone.
Learn more about how to control multiple string lights with a single remote. will give you some ideas on how to eliminate light connection problems and how to solve them.
If you have a lamp that can use more than one bulb, it’s also important to be able to group the bulbs together.
If you don’t group all the bulbs into one lamp, you’ll have to turn each bulb on and off separately.
Note that apps from different brands use different names for smart device groups. terms used include “rooms”, “groups” and “zones”. I’ll explain them for each example below.
How to Group Lights Bulbs With a Smart Switch
The cheapest way to group light bulbs in a room is to connect them to a smart switch.
If you have a smart switch that can be connected to multiple light bulbs, you don’t need to buy smart light bulbs. you can buy regular led bulbs which are much cheaper.
You will need to connect the bulbs to the smart switch by connecting the smart switch to the correct circuits.
then the smart switch can be connected to an app. you can use the app to control the switch. this allows you to turn all the bulbs on and off at once. you can also use a smart switch to dim the bulbs.
deficiencies of using a smart switch to group lights
- the colors of ordinary led bulbs cannot be changed with a smart switch.
- It becomes complicated to connect led bulbs from different rooms to one switch. you would have to install a smart switch in each room. this prevents you from being able to create larger zones linking lights in many rooms.
- If the smart switch goes bad, you can’t control any of your lights. You avoid this problem if you have multiple smart bulbs.
how to group your smart lights with a smart hub
some smart bulbs won’t work without a hub. active hive lights, for example, need the hive hub to work.
other smart lights can work without a hub. but, if you have a hub anyway, you’ll probably want to connect your lights to it. then you can control the lights through the hub.
before grouping your smart lights:
- you will need to download an application that will control the hub. the hub then sends the signal to the lights. if you’ve already been using the hub, you probably already have the app.
- I recommend connecting all of your smart bulbs to your hub before you start grouping them together.
grouping of smart bulbs via google home
If you use a google device as a hub, you will need to download the google home app to group your smart lights together.
google devices that act as a hub include:
- the google nest hub max
- the google home smart speaker
- the google home mini
- the google nest hub smart display
Note that google home has two grouping options.
a room is a set of linked smart lights. a group is a set of connected speakers. you’ll want to create rooms to group your smart lights.
once you have linked your smart lights to
once you’ve linked your lights to your google home app, follow these steps to create a room:
- select the light you want to add to a room.
- tap “add to a room” at the bottom of the screen.
- select “start” and tap “next”.
- tap “move device”.
- select the room you want to add your smart light to (or scroll to the bottom to create a “custom room”).
- tap “next”.
- repeat for all your smart lights
About 81% of home buyers would be more willing to buy a home if it came bundled with smart technology products.
controlling your lights
You can use the room name in a command to turn the lights on or off. for example, if you say “ok google, turn off the kitchen lights”, the kitchen lights will turn off.
if your google hub device is in the same room as the lights, you can say “ok google, turn off the lights”. the lights in that room will turn off.
grouping smart bulbs via alexa
in alexa, a group of lights is simply called a group.
once you’ve linked your lights to your alexa app, follow these steps to group them together:
- make sure you’re on the devices tab (select it in the bottom right corner)
- tap the + icon in the top right corner.
- tap add group.
- choose a group name (or scroll to “custom name” to create a new group)
- touch all the lights you want to add to the group.
- tap “save” at the bottom of the screen.
control your lights
You can use the room name in a command to turn the lights on or off. For example, if you say “Alexa, turn off the kitchen”, the lights in the kitchen will turn off.
You can also control the group in the device tab of the app.
smart bulb grouping via philips hue app
please note there are philips bluetooth smart bulbs. These can be linked to the Philips Hue app without a hub. You can also link them to a Google Home or Alexa speaker.
other philips smart bulbs only work if you have the hue bridge to connect them to the app.
In the Philips Hue app, a group of lights is called a room. You can also create a zone that groups light bulbs from multiple rooms.
once you have linked your lights to your philips hue app, follow these steps to group them:
once you’ve linked your lights to your hue app, follow these steps to group them:
- starts at the home screen.
- Tap the 3 dots in the top right corner.
- select “rooms & zones.”
- select “create.”
- select “create zone.”
- on the “create new zone” screen, enter the name of the zone .
- select an icon for the zone.
- add lights to the area.
- tap the check mark in the upper right corner.
grouping smart bulbs via apple homekit app
just like the philips hue system, homekit has both room and zone options.
a room is a group of devices.
a zone is a group of rooms.
There is also the option to create a group, which groups devices that perform the same function. for example, a group could include all of your lights or all of your smart plugs.
once you’ve linked your lights to your homekit app, follow these steps to group them together:
- enter a light’s menu by tapping the light’s name.
- tap “details”.
- tap “group with other accessories”.
- all lights will be grouped by room.
- create a name for the group.
- touch the lights you want to group.
- tap “done” in the upper right corner.
grouping of smart bulbs via ring app
You will need the Ring Bridge to place smart lights in a group in the Ring app. echo devices can replace a ring bridge.
You can connect up to 50 smart lights to the ring bridge.
once you’ve linked your lights to your ring app, follow these steps to group them:
- Tap the device you want to add to the group.
- tap “device settings”.
- tap “group”.
- tap the name of the group you want to add the light to.
grouping smart bulbs via hive app
you can group hive lights by hive actions. this is definitely a more complicated process than in other applications.
Once you’ve linked your lights to your hive app, follow these steps to group them together:
- go to the menu and tap on “actions”.
- on ios, tap on the “discover” tab. on android, tap the + button.
- choose the devices you want to group together and define what they should do by touching the “when”, “while” and “then” boxes. select the available options to create a group.
- tap “done”.
- tap “next”.
- name the action.
- touch “save”.
how to group your smart light without hub
Many bulbs work without a hub. You can group and control these lights using the smart life app.
grouping of smart bulbs via smart life app
Once you’ve linked your lights to the smart life app, follow these steps to group them together:
- select one of the lights you set up in the app.
- tap the three dots in the top right corner.
- select “create a group”.
- add the lights you want to add to the group.
- tap “save” in the upper right corner.
- type the name of the group in the popup window. menu above.
- tap “confirm”.
8 fantastic groups of smart lights to create in your home
You can create a group of smart lights for each of the following rooms or areas of your home. here are some ideas for each space:
You could use ceiling lights in your kitchen and group them with strip lights under the cabinets. These light strips can better illuminate work surfaces in the kitchen. once you’re done, you can turn off all the lights at the same time.
2. living room
You can group both ceiling lights and lamps in your living room.
Some smart device apps can create scenes with grouped lights. these scenes are predetermined to a specific light color and brightness. this can create a specific mood in your living room.
You can select different scenes whether you are watching TV, reading or spending time with your family.
3. dining room
By grouping smart lights in your dining room, you can easily change the brightness of your lights. for a comfortable family meal, you may want to use brighter lights than for a romantic dinner. this can be adjusted with a touch of your phone.
If you have more than one smart light bulb in your bathroom, it’s handy to turn them off at the same time.
It would also be nice to be able to dim all the lights at the same time if you use the bathroom in the middle of the night. you don’t want to be bombarded with bright lights while using the bathroom.
Consider installing lights that you can control individually, even when grouped together. at night, you may only need a smart bulb to provide light.
In your bedroom, you probably have extra ceiling lights and bedside lamps. having these lights grouped together and scheduled to come on at a specific time is good for a smart alarm clock.
But when it comes to a bathroom, I suggest using lights that can be controlled individually and as a group. this will allow you to have your bedside lamp on without the ceiling lights shining on it.
If you group lights together in your basement, you can turn on all the lights at the same time. this allows you to see all parts of the basement as you enter, rather than just the entrance being lit.
This is a nice security feature.
It also helps you find something easier if you have a good overview of the whole space.
If you have a two-story house, you can also create groups of lights for each floor.
7. first floor
If you spend most of the day on the first floor, you can turn on all the lights on the first floor during the day.
You can schedule the lights to turn off at a certain time at night when you’re up in bed.
8. second floor
If your bedrooms and bathrooms are on the second floor, grouping lights can help wake up the whole family at a set time. simply program a group of lights on the second floor to come on at a specific time in the morning.
3 advantages of grouping the smart lights in your home
grouping the smart lights in your home saves you time. It is a convenient way to control multiple lights in your home simultaneously.
The more lights you have, the more you can benefit from grouping them together.
If light groups can be scheduled, they can also help wake the family up early enough each morning.
and turning off all the lights at a specific time each night ensures that you go to bed early enough.
2. create a mood
Since many smart lighting apps allow you to set scenes for groups of lights, you can easily create a certain mood in your home.
You can change the colors and brightness of multiple groups at the same time.
You can even make use of default scenes. this allows you to create an atmosphere that is romantic, relaxing or keeps you focused.
3. saving electricity
Smart light clusters can even save you money by conserving electricity. If all the lights are scheduled to turn off at a certain time, you don’t have to worry about leaving the lights on. this saves energy.
This is also a benefit of smart bulbs that work individually, but installation takes much longer.
4 things you need to group the smart lights in your home
1. more than one smart light
You can only group smart lights together if you have more than one. It makes sense to have these lights in the same room or area of your house if you want to group them together.
2. an application
Smart lights are connected to an app. you can group the lights in the app.
3. compatible smart lights
To group smart lights together, they all need to be compatible with the same app.
4. some smart lights require a hub
The hub connects the smart lights to the smart app. If you only want to connect your smart lights and no other devices, I suggest buying lights that work without a hub.
Does grouping my smart lights have disadvantages?
specific systems have specific disadvantages in terms of grouping smart lights.
disadvantages of using google home to group smart lights
- You can only add a specific light to a room.
- google automatically groups smart lights as they are added. all devices with the name “light” will automatically be placed in the same room. you can rename your lights to avoid this.
disadvantages of using alexa to group smart lights
- you can’t schedule a group of lights in alexa. you will have to program each bulb individually if you want all the lights to turn off automatically at a certain time.
disadvantages of using philips hue to group smart lights
- You can connect a maximum of 50 smart lights to the Philips Hue Bridge. this should not be a problem in most cases. if you have more than 50 smart lights, you will need to purchase a second bridge.
disadvantages of using apple homekit to group smart lights
- if your lights need to be connected to a hub, the homekit option is very expensive. the apple homepod costs more than $300.
disadvantages of using the ring app to group smart lights
- You can connect a maximum of 50 smart lights to the ring bridge. in most homes this will suffice, but it is worth noting.
- You cannot control smart lights individually once they are added to a group in the ring app.
- each light can only be placed in a single group in the ring app.
disadvantages of using the hive app to group smart lights
- the process is unnecessarily complicated.
home streamliner shot:
grouping smart lights has great advantages. If you have a lamp that can use more than one smart bulb, grouping these bulbs together is a no-brainer.
I think sometimes the process is too complicated. it is possible to have smart lights in your home on a budget. It’s also possible to group these lights together without breaking the bank.
If you just want to automate your home lighting (and not add other types of smart devices), you don’t need a hub. rather invest in smart light bulbs that have the features you want and bundle them in the smart life app.