Review of Dual Wi-Fi 16A socket: energy monitoring, Tuya Smart, local control in Home Assistant 2022.
In this review, we will consider an interesting device for a smart home – a powerful dual wi-fi socket from the Tuya Smart ecosystem in the European form factor. The device has separate control of each of the outputs and a common energy monitoring system.
I will also talk about the local, that is, independent of the Internet, the integration of the socket into the Home Assistant with the forwarding of energy monitoring sensors into it.
- Maximum total load current – 16 A
- Operating voltage range – 100 – 250 V
- Wireless interface – wi-fi 2.4 GHz
- Ecosystem – Tuya Smart
- Supports Google Assistat and Amazon Alexa
The device comes in a white cardboard box, there is no manufacturer’s brand name or model number. Dry definition – double wi-fi socket with energy monitoring.
There is not much information on the sides of the box – the parameters and main capabilities of the device are briefly indicated, there is a QR to download the Smart Life application, one of the clones of Tuya Smart
The delivery set is laconic. It includes an outlet and a rather thick instruction booklet.
The most understandable language in the instructions is English, and the most valuable information concerns resetting the device and changing pairing modes – for this you need to hold the power button for 6 seconds.
The rounded body of the device is made of white matte plastic. On the front there are two deep sockets of the Schuko standard, for thick 16 A plugs, with grounding.
The socket is symmetrical, on the narrow sides there are round buttons for manual control of each of the two sockets. Separate control is a big plus.
The plug of the device is also made in the Schuko standard with thick blades and a grounding pin through.
The contacts of the sockets are protected from children and splashes – they are covered with plastic curtains. Another plus for security.
The pluses also include the fact that when installed in a standard row of sockets, I have Legrand, the device does not block access to adjacent connectors.
In my case, this is critical, since I needed to make four outlets of three so as not to constantly swap the plugs.
When power is restored, the outlet will always turn on, no matter what state it was in. If it is used only for energy monitoring, it is very convenient.
Let’s start the logical part with the standard Tuya Smart control system. The smartphone needs to be switched to the 2.4 GHz range, click on the option to add new devices and wait until the socket appears on the search screen. After that we add it to the system.
On the main screen of the plugin, on the left side is the relay control panel. The top button turns on and off both sockets at once, and below – two more buttons for separate control. Each of them can be given its own name.
There are standard options for each of the sockets – a timer that can be set either once or repeatedly. You can receive notifications from the application about triggering. And the countdown, the time after which the outlet turns off.
Energy monitoring – it is full-fledged, that is, both the load current and the network voltage, the current power and the power consumed by months. Since the application depends on the cloud, the values are updated with a delay of about 10-15 seconds.
In automations, a device can be both a trigger and an action. By the way, unlike mihome – where sockets are usually only actions. Moreover, there are many more than 10 options. Starting with the change in the status of the sockets.
There are triggers for a countdown time in seconds, an increase in power from 0 to 50 watts, and the cost of electricity.
In addition, you can configure the trigger for the current values of voltage, current and power.
Fewer options are available for actions – only five.
Four – clear and logical, this is the control of each of the sockets – turn on, turn off and switch the state. This is the ability to set a countdown interval before turning off each outlet. But the fifth – an increase in power, is not clear. How can you force the outlet to increase its power?
Tuya Smart account can be connected to Google Home. This makes it possible to have one point of control for devices from different ecosystems. The hero of the review threw three switches at once – a common one and separate for each outlet.
Everything is simple here – you can turn it on and off, including by voice, but there is no data on energy monitoring here
Let’s move on to Home Assistant. The system already has a standard integration called Tuya.
To connect it, you need to specify your email account, password, phone prefix and application – I have it Tuya.
After that, the devices connected to the account fly into the system, but not all, the zigbee gateway, for example, did not appear. But then scripts and automation appear.
The socket appears here in the form of two switches. As in the case of Google Assistant, there are no energy monitoring sensors.
The sockets can only be turned on and off, in addition, the integration depends on the Internet and the quality of the connection with the cloud service.
But there is a way out – local tuya integration. How to configure it and get the local keys of your devices – I told in my lesson on Home Assistant number 9.5 Using this method, we get the local key of the device.
In the Settings – Integration menu, add Local Tuya. The socket will be found, among other Tuya devices if you have one. You can define it by id
We select it and to continue, you need to click Confirm. In the next window, you need to set your device name and copy the local key. The rest will be substituted by itself. If after that you get a connection error, try again after 10-15 minutes.
When the connection is successful, the integration will ask what type of device it is
Today there are 6 classes of devices available that are supported by the integration. But in fact, they can be used to connect other devices, such as thermostats.
In our case, this is a switch – one of the basic entities, along with lamps.
Now the most interesting thing is that we need to figure out all the parameters that we get from the outlet, and there are a lot of them here. The relay is easiest to find – these are the first two parameters with the status True or False
In the friendly name – we write our name, and in the attributes – I added the parameters received from the socket just one by one. Why – a little further.
In the next window, uncheck the Do not add new devices checkbox, and select switch again.
Here in the ID we set the second parameter with the status True or False, and in the attributes – the following values, after those that we added to the first socket.
We don’t add anything else, we connect our device to the system.
A new one has appeared in the list of integration devices, with the name we have specified.
It consists of two entities – these are two sockets. All the rest are attributes to them.
First, we check whether we have chosen the correct parameters for the sockets – but here it is unrealistic to make a mistake, since only two of all had the binary status True or False
Now we look at the attributes of the switches, these are the parameters that we added to the fields of current strength, voltage and power.
We need to compare them with those that we see in the application in order to determine the numbers of each of the energy monitoring parameters.
Here’s a voltage – we remember or write down the number under which this value is broadcast.
The current power has also been determined. The typing method has to be used because at the moment of choosing the parameters during setup, they are not updated online.
Finally, they brought everything together – current strength, voltage and power.
The convenience of defining this using attributes is that they can be changed online. To do this, go to the socket settings.
In the first window, leave everything unchanged.
But further – you can change the current, voltage and power in the attributes on the fly – the numbers of the parameters received from the socket.
To get what we need from this whole list. We write down or remember the number of each identified parameter, repeat until we find everything.
I prefer to have energy monitoring parameters in the form of separate sensors, rather than attributes, as, for example, in the zigbee2mqtt integration. Therefore, after I have found the numbers of all the values I need, I delete this outlet.
Immediately add it again. In the first window – devices, we leave everything as it was.
Selecting the switch device type
But now – we only indicate the relay switch and its name. Leave the attributes empty.
We select the next entity – it will again be switch – the second socket.
It’s the same here – all attributes are empty, only the name.
But we do not stop there, we continue to add, this time the sensor.
And then we indicate the parameter we found using the attributes. Number 18 corresponds to the amperage. We set the name, indicate the units of measurement – Amperes, select the class of the device – the current sensor. Since the socket transmits the value in mA, then we specify the scaling factor – one thousandth to get the Amperes.
Similarly, we add the power, it was found at number 19. We indicate the name, units of measurement and class of the device. Empirically, it turned out that to get the correct value, you need to set the scaling factor to one tenth.
And finally, number 20 is tension. It’s the same here, including one-tenth scaling.
Now we save the resulting device.
In integration, it now has five separate entities – two switches and three sensors.
Everything is beautiful and correct – status and control of sockets, energy monitoring parameters, online and without dependence on the Internet
Can be compared with the readings in the app.
Using this technique, you can connect any other controlled wi-fi outlet of the Tuya Smart ecosystem to the Home Assistant. For zigbee versions – a coordinator or gateway should be used, but that’s a completely different story.