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echo plus dropping zigbee devices

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echo plus dropping zigbee devices
« on: April 02, 2023, 08:47:34 pm »
I recently (1month ago) found 1 of my 5 roller blinds no longer responding to the controlling routine. There are all in the same room with my echo plus from the same manufacturer. Since everything worked for a "long" time, so it took me a while to find the manual instructions how to repairing it. Now I just happen to find 2 others doing the same thing. Having this time the manual handy, it took me not much time to fix these. What is annoying is that there is no rime to the failure. Any suggestions I can find are not applicable. So is this the common finding we have to live with? I suspect something is going on with echo device loosing setup info.

Re: echo plus dropping zigbee devices
« Reply #1 on: April 03, 2023, 08:22:23 am »
I recently (1month ago) found 1 of my 5 roller blinds no longer responding to the controlling routine. There are all in the same room with my echo plus from the same manufacturer. Since everything worked for a "long" time, so it took me a while to find the manual instructions how to repairing it. Now I just happen to find 2 others doing the same thing. Having this time the manual handy, it took me not much time to fix these. What is annoying is that there is no rime to the failure. Any suggestions I can find are not applicable. So is this the common finding we have to live with? I suspect something is going on with echo device loosing setup info.

I've found it common that things stop functioning sometimes after an update. The Echo system updates are sometimes the reason for the treason of your configured devices it's suppose to operate. I find this on almost all brands and types of devices. This morning I had to unpair and repair an Apple TV remote to get it to start working again after an update on the Apple TV device... half of the remote functions just quit working and no settings whatsoever would allow the remote to get back to normal. Since I have a spare remote (due to upgrading the olds one to the latest), this was possible. If I had no other remote, I would have not been able to re-install the remote even. I restarted, rebooted, reset, and reconfigured for almost an hour trying to get things to work and finally decided to go back to the old remote and see if it would work... and it did. So I repaired the new one and it works as it should now... These products nowadays are not ready for end users, and we should have a Huge "WELCOME TO BETA TESTING" warning on the packaging so we'd know what we're getting into.

Just know that anytime the auto updates occur (which I don't think the Echos have an option to not update), you may have some oddity show up on either the Echo you are using or the devices it controls... and there often is no known solution. It's up to you to find the way to make it work.
2 Echo Dots 2nd gen
2 echo dots gen 3 (no clock) -2 Echo Dot 3rd gen with Clock
1 echo dot Gen 4 with clock
1 Echo Spot
4 10" Fire Tablets
1 15' Echo show
23 Hue Lights 1 Hue bridge - 1 Amazon Smart plug outlet
One Ring Doorbell Pro
4 cell phones with Alexa app installed!
You should see My Apple Device List!

Re: echo plus dropping zigbee devices
« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2023, 12:21:48 pm »
@Joachim47
sometimes you just need to power cycle everything before messing with any settings.  and when I say power cycle everything, it is the echo device (for at least 40 seconds), the blinds, and your router(both for a 20 count).  Do this one at a time to see if it working after each. 

Re: echo plus dropping zigbee devices
« Reply #3 on: April 03, 2023, 01:19:17 pm »
Thanks for the responses. I should have mentioned that the blinds are all battery operated with no connection to the my wifi network at all. So the only culprit can only be the echo device and its inability to keep information which is clearly a general design flaw of the echo support firmware. Microsoft can do this a lot better these days but amazon is way behind in system design and finesse.

Re: echo plus dropping zigbee devices
« Reply #4 on: April 03, 2023, 05:40:04 pm »
blinds being battery does not change my response.    something was not talking to something and power cycling will hopefully reset the connections.  It should usually be the first thing to troubleshoot with.   

Offline jwlv

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Re: echo plus dropping zigbee devices
« Reply #5 on: April 03, 2023, 06:12:47 pm »
I was one of the very early adopters of the Amazon Echo. I got the original one a year before anyone else. One of the first things that Amazon quietly changed was the support for Wemo devices. Wemo makes smart plugs and light bulbs. Originally, support for it was built-in. I believe Philips Hue was also supported. When Amazon rolled out Skills, they quietly turned off the built-in support. So one day, I noticed that I couldn't control any of my Wemo devices. It took some digging to find out that I needed to install the Wemo skill for them to continue to work.

In summary, Amazon turns things on or off at their will and has never notified anyone about these changes. The last thing I noticed that they turned off was the ability to add or edit Echo Buttons. This happened about 6 months ago. Then about a month after that, they quietly put it back. No explanation at all.

Similarly someone else mentioned a week ago that the PC/web interface for Alexa is gone. No official mention of that either. They're just forcing you to use the app now.


Offline jwlv

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Re: echo plus dropping zigbee devices
« Reply #6 on: April 03, 2023, 06:17:20 pm »
@Joachim47
sometimes you just need to power cycle everything before messing with any settings.  and when I say power cycle everything, it is the echo device (for at least 40 seconds), the blinds, and your router(both for a 20 count).  Do this one at a time to see if it working after each. 

I think it's actually a good idea to turn off the main circuit breaker to the entire house once or twice a year just to keep things going. Too many things in our homes are computer controlled. Your TV has an embedded microprocessor (i.e. a computer), your microwave, coffee maker, and just about everything else you plug in has a microprocessor. The simpler the device, the less complicated the microprocessor and the software that runs it. The simple stuff probably never need to be power cycled (reboot). The more complex stuff, like your HDTV, cable box/DVR, HVAC, dish washer, laundry machine, etc. would probably benefit from a reboot every now and then.

Re: echo plus dropping zigbee devices
« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2023, 12:02:44 pm »
Due to new information I like to share here which gives my initial concern a new angle.
In the process of rectifying another failure with the identical blind I had the original problem, the blind motor started to misbehave and never reconnected with my echo. In the end it lost even operability with the associated remote. The customer service rep from graywind ultimately revealed that the generation of blind motors on my delivery from last year had shown problems and are meanwhile replaced by a next generation motor. I am now waiting for a replacement of 5 motors which I am asked to install to ensure proper operation on all 5 blinds. So my problem seems to have more to do with the hardware provided by the blind manufacturer than the echo automation environment and/or changes done by amazon.

Re: echo plus dropping zigbee devices
« Reply #8 on: June 12, 2023, 06:03:22 pm »
This issue seems to point more clearly to a problem with the echo zigbee hub design after the following findings. After replacing 3 of 5 blind motors things got really interesting a couple of days later when 2 new motored blinds and 1 old motor failed in the sunrise routine sch4duled to open all blinds in the living room. There was no way to reconnect with shutting down rebooting the echo to those blinds unless I reran the discovery step over again for each. So I checked on all programs running at sunrise and came to the conclusion that to several other routines started simultaneously with the sunrise call. In general, my unrecoverable fails are all associated with direct zigbee linked devices to echo. Any lights and other shades operating with skill and separate hub never loose actual connectivity even when a routine at times fails in complete execution on all respective devices they remain connected and usually a simple rerun or hub reset will correct the situation. So I am more convinced that the echo zigbee hub has problems and hence more users are recommending to use a separate quality zigbee hub instead. Is this a fair conclusion?

Re: echo plus dropping zigbee devices
« Reply #9 on: November 24, 2023, 07:34:02 pm »
After several months now without a single failure of any zigbee device linked through a separate hub to my echo plus I am now ready to call all the drop failures of direct connected devices to the echo build-in hub caused by the amazon side and hence gives me a degree of satisfaction to have found the route cause of my previous failures to keep my devices consistently operable.

Re: echo plus dropping zigbee devices
« Reply #10 on: November 25, 2023, 04:37:15 am »
After several months now without a single failure of any zigbee device linked through a separate hub to my echo plus I am now ready to call all the drop failures of direct connected devices to the echo build-in hub caused by the amazon side and hence gives me a degree of satisfaction to have found the route cause of my previous failures to keep my devices consistently operable.

what hub did you get?    I do not use the hub on the echo devices either.   I just make sure whatever smart device I get, it will work with wifi,ring or hue hubs.   

Re: echo plus dropping zigbee devices
« Reply #11 on: November 25, 2023, 11:08:07 am »
All my Zigbee devices are either on HUE or the troubling shades are now on a graywind supplied multi mode gateway supporting wireless protocol: 2.4G Wi-Fi, Zigbee, BLE, & Mesh.
« Last Edit: November 25, 2023, 11:35:26 am by Joachim47 »