Top automatic light switches and buying guides in 2021

An automatic light switch does both turn-on and off function automatically in several ways. It works by a light-sensing sensor or motion-sensing sensor. A timer can give the on-off signal to the switch. The automatic light switch is very convenient and energy-saving. Day by day, the automatic light switch is becoming popular. Its use is getting common in business and public areas as it is convenient for employees to turn on and off. It turns off the lights automatically after inactivity for a certain period. Therefore, it saves energy and money.

If you are in a rush, you can use the comparison table below to buy the most suitable item. The comparison table is basically the summary of the different items described in this article. You can buy the best item based on your budget, material preference, and also our commendation. Based on our study we concluded that-
– The overall best – Honeywell Home Programmable Light Switch
– The best value – Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Light Switch
– The Premium Quality – GE SunSmart Programmable Digital Timer Switch

The top 5 automatic light switches in 2021

1. Honeywell Home Programmable Light Switch
2. Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Light Switch
3. Lutron Motion Sensor Light Switch
4. GE SunSmart Programmable Digital Timer Switch
5. Lutron Maestro Motion Sensor Dimmer Switch

Comparison of top 5 automatic light switches

Produce NameHoneywell Home Programmable Light SwitchKasa Smart Wi-Fi Light SwitchLutron Motion Sensor Light SwitchGE SunSmart Programmable Digital Timer SwitchLutron Maestro Motion Sensor Dimmer Switch
Product URLProduct 1Product 2Product 3Product 4Product 5
BrandHoneywell HomeKasa Smart LutronGE Lutron
Switch style
Push Button Switch
One-wayON-OFFON-OFFON-OFF
Dimensions2.3 x 6.3 x 8.7 inches1.5 x 3.3 x 5 inches1.75 x 2 x 4.2 inches6.8 x 4.75 x 2.3 inches1.75 x 2.2 x 4.2 inches
Plug profileEmbedded Wall mountWall mountWall mountWall mount
RecommendationOverall BestBest valuePopular ItemPremium QualityArabica Coffee

Here are the details of each item described on the above comparison table-

1. Honeywell Home Programmable Light Switch

Photo: Honeywell Home Programmable Light Switch

Honeywell Home programmable light switch helps you save money by ensuring that your lights are only turned on when they are needed. This environment-friendly product is compatible with CF Bulbs, incandescent, halogen, and fluorescent lights. It is a great product for indoor and outdoor use. It is also can be fitted for ceiling fans, pond pumps, and pool pumps. It has three modes of operation and seven programs. It is a programmable switch for lights and motors that best suits your individual needs.

The various features such as customizing capability, energy-saving ECONOSwitch, control from multiple devices, multi-mode operation, and sleek design make it one of the best automatic light switches in the market.

The 7-day solar timetable switch allows you to create various options in your corporate office, home, or studio. The sleek design can fit with standard wallplates, while the large screen and backlight provide clear viewing, even at night. It is easy to install and equipped with automatic daylight-saving updates. This switch works to reduce energy costs even when you’re not around.

Installation guide of Honeywell Home programmable light switch, Video Courtesy: Dvbdvbdvb

2. Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Light Switch

Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Light Switch
Photo: Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Light Switch

Kasa Smart Wi-Fi light switch dimmer is the most reasonable product in the market. It is a single-pole switch that is compatible with Amazon Alexa, Google Home. It is capable of handling the 2.4GHz Wi-Fi connection. It is UL certified product, and you do not need any hub to connect.

Control your room’s brightness and set the ambiance for any mood or activity using the Kasa Smart app. You can dim the lighting and set the perfect atmosphere for a romantic movie night with special someone.

The installation is also very easy. You do not need to understand complex wiring. You can do it by yourself following the step-by-step wiring process in the Kasa Smart app. It comes with labels, a faceplate, and the necessary hardware.

You can use the grouping feature on the Kasa Smart app to combine your devices together for unified control with one single tap on your smartphone. You can combiner living room bulbs, plugs and light switches together for an easy way to turn them on when you get home. You can also fade off the lights with a simple double-click or set up your voice assistant to do it. It is a a great product to dim the light slowly when your child drifts to sleep or to give yourself enough time to exit a room.

Insstallation Guide of the Kasa Smart light switch. Video Courtesy: TP-link.

3. Lutron Motion Sensor Light Switch

Lutron Maestro Motion Sensor Switch
Photo: Lutron Motion Sensor Light Switch

Maestro occupancy/vacancy sensors automatically turn lights on when you enter a space and off when you leave, making them convenient to save energy in a home or commercial space. They’re ideal for rooms where lights are accidentally left on, such as an office, or rooms that you often enter with your hands full, such as a laundry room or supply closet. Lutron offers various sensors to meet the needs of any space, including sensor switches, dual-circuit switches, and dimmer sensors.

Lutron now offers Maestro occupancy/vacancy sensor switches in passive infrared ray (PIR) or dual-technology sensing models. Both technologies provide coverage for major, minor and fine motion, making either option ideal for most residential and commercial applications. For applications where very fine motion activities such as typing are most common, the dual-technology sensor is the better solution.

The new model Maestro sensor combines 0-10V dimming and PIR sensing into one simple, cost-effective solution. Lutron uses XCT sensing technology and smart, adaptive settings to provide reliable sensing and optimized dimming performance. Installation is a snap with mis-wire alerts, no neutral required, and easy adjustable settings.

Installation Guide of Lutron Motion Sensor Light Switch, Video Courtesy: Lutron Electronics.

4. GE SunSmart Programmable Digital Timer Switch

GE SunSmart digital timer
Photo: GE SunSmart programmable digital timer

GE SunSmart programmable digital switch is a very highly, multi-function digital timer. It can be used for versatile purposes. This is one of the excellent products for your home, studio, or corporate space.

You can set multiple On-Off settings for lights or appliances throughout the week. It is possible to set up to 7 individual weekly programs. This product is also compatible with LED, CFL, and incandescent bulbs.

The timer will auto-adjust to sunset-sunrise times and Daylight-saving time throughout the year for easy programming, and it also features a vacation setting to help deter crime when you are away.

It is an easy-to-install device with direct wire. The timer replaces a standard wall switch, fits in a single or multi-gang rocker plate, can be used in single-pole or 3-way installation, and includes white and light almost faceplates.

The timer features a backup battery to maintain settings in the event of a power outage, the easy-to-read LCD display makes programming simple and door also functions as a convenient On-Off to override push-button. This is one of our highly recommended products in the list.

GE SunSmart Timer Switch unpacking; Video courtesy: Cvideos.

5. Lutron Maestro Motion Sensor Dimmer Switch

Lutron Maestro LED+ Motion Sensor Dimmer Switch
Photo: Lutron Maestro LED+ Motion Sensor Dimmer Switch

This is one of the great products of Lutron electronics. This product works right out of the box. The features including-
• No programming required
• Optimized for ideal sensitivity
• Settings are simple to adjust—no dip switches or dials
• Neutral optional—one model has you covered with the option to connect the neutral
• 3-way—works with a Maestro® accessory switch or mechanical switch.

Adjustable sensor settings-
• Timeout: Adjust to 1, 5, 15*, or 30 minutes
• Mode (sensor modes): Lights automatically turn
off in all sensor modes
– Occ – Occupancy mode*
– Lrn – Occupancy with learning ALD mode
– Fixd – Occupancy with fixed ALD mode
– Vac – Vacancy mode (no ALD)
• Sensitivity: High*, medium, low, minimum

Adjustable dimmer settings
• High- and low-end trim: The user has the
option to set the high-end and low-end light level
• Adjustable fade time
– fade-to-on: .75 – 15 seconds
– fade-to-off: .75 – 15 seconds
• Selectable dimming curve: Optimizes
driver performance
– Linear*
– Square Law (logarithmic)

Lutron sensors detect fine motion better than other PIR sensors
• Provides exceptional prevention of false-ons and false-offs
• Superior sensitivity—recognizes the difference between fine human motion and background noise.

Optimized dimming performance
• Selectable dimming curve ensures optimal performance
– Linear*
– Square Law (logarithmic)
• Smooth fade-to-on and fade-to-off

If you have a handsome budget for the automatic light switch, this would be a great product for you.

LED+ dimmer installation Guide, Video Courtesy: Lutron Electronics.

How does an automatic light switch work?

In a light-sensing automatic switch, the cadmium sulfide photo-resistor (also known as a CdS cell) is used. Depending on the amount of light that arrives on the resistor, the resistance value of photo-resistor changes. When enough light (for example, on a sunny day) hits the resistor, it conducts electricity very well, as it has almost zero resistance. Therefore, the automatic switch activates to turn off the light.

When there is no light (for example, at night), the resistance value becomes high. So, the electrical conductivity becomes poor. In this case, the automatic switch activates to turn on the light. In a real-life lighting switch, the circuit is more advanced with additional functions. It has a CdS cell, transistor, and relay but might need more than one transistor depending on the size of the relay.

In a motion-sensing automatic switch, there is a small electronic sensor that detects infrared waves. The infrared wave is the radiation wave created by moving objects such as humans, animals, moving objects, etc. When any object moves across the field of view of the sensor, it detects the infrared wave. For this detection, the automatic switch activates to turn on the light. In a real-life motion-sensing automatic switch, there are additional timers and transistors to provide more features.

How to turn off and on an automatic light switch?

(a) Deactivation of automatic light switch

If you are not enjoying the on and off clicking of the automatic sensor light, you can deactivate it. Most manufacturers make it simple to turn off this vital feature of the switch. The fixture should have an “on time” switch, normally located right beneath the motion sensor. Set it to any position other than the test position and turn off the light’s linked switch. If you are not confirmed, test all accessible switches before fiddling with the “on time” button.

(b) Restoring the automatic light switch

If you want to restore the automatic switch function after disabling that, don’t worry. It is a very straightforward procedure, thanks to the makers. They have also made the restoration procedure easy to follow. Locate the control switch and swiftly turn it off and on. This quick switch flip instructs the lamp to reintroduce motion into its function.

Do automatic light switches save money?

Automatic light switches are best suited for corporate places and retail stores. It eliminates the duty from the last employee leaving to check that every light is either turn off or not. Automatic light switches with motion-detecting sensors would be great to link with many lights, purchasing the sensor more economical. So, it will save the cost of human work, energy, and money.

Installing a motion sensor is recommended in a medium or low-traffic area, where you habitually leave a light on and do not notice accidentally. If you want to use an automatic light switch for your kitchen or bedroom, it might not be cost-effective. Because it’s very unlikely you’re leaving your lights on that often, especially in places with high traffic, such as a living room or kitchen. This may include closets, bathrooms, entrances, utility closets, garages, or guest rooms.

Typically, an automatic light sensor costs $13 to $35, and the switch lasts 15 to 20 years. So, the average cost per month for a switch is 5 cents to 20 cents. These light switches are always on standby to respond to movement and thus consume some amount of phantom energy. So unless you forget to turn off your 60-watt light bulb 14 hours a day every day for a year, the cost of purchasing and powering the standby light switch isn’t worth the investment. That cost is similar to the energy cost of leaving a 60 watt light turned on for 12 to 20 hours.

Do automatic light switches worthwhile at home?

Due to the increased use of Amazon Alexa, Google Home, or other Wi-Fi-controlled devices, automatic light switches are a good idea. You can command the Amazon Alexa, Google Home to turn on-off the device without moving from your desk. Moreover, if any thief crosses a dark area, the security camera can not record the clear face. If you have a baby in your home, automatic light switches are highly recommended. You do not need to worry about the room of your baby plays. When your little angel moves from one room to another room, the light will turn on and off automatically.

What factors need to consider buying the best motion detector light switch?

(a) Number of Traffic in the designated area
(b) Type of sensor (Active or Passive)
(c) Daylight sensing
(d) Light, valve compatibility
(e) Other features

Conclusions:
When you would like to buy an automatic light switch, you will get many options. But you should choose an automatic light switch, timer, or dimmer that is best suited for your need. If you buy a great product, you do not need to worry about 15 to 20 years. But making a wrong decision may cost more money. If you want the best light dimmer or switch, you can trust our review. If you have any questions or comments, you can comment here or contact us directly.

-Our editorial board has reviewed this article and has been approved for publication according to our editorial policy.

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