Electronics Home Automation

Adding a Zigbee Smart Thermostatic radiator valve to Home Assistant

Controlling our loft radiator with a Zigbee controlled thermostatic radiator valve and Home Assistant

We have another new addition to our Home Assistant smart home setup with a Zigbee controlled thermostatic radiator valve (TRV) installed on the radiator in our loft workshop.

In the past we have used a basic manual controlled TRV on the loft radiator which runs from our gas fired central heating system with the TR set to turn off once the temperature reached a set point.

The radiator is located next to the loft hatch so hot air from the rest of the house would rise past the TRV and radiator which resulted in the set temperature not working correctly. With a digital controlled TRV we can now add a temperature offset to control the valve and radiator and change its settings based on the other Zigbee temperature sensor located in the loft.

The target temperature can also be changed depending on the loft hatch being opened or closed and when it is closed, we can set a lower target temperature as the loft is not being used at that time.

Most smart thermostatic radiator valves use their own custom protocol and smart hub and use cloud-based services which we wanted to avoid. Some use Wi-Fi but this would reduce the battery life due to the extra current consumption of a Wi-Fi module compared to a Zigbee based system.

New Zigbee TRV
New Zigbee TRV

We found a Zigbee TRV on Amazon UK marketed as a “KETOTEK Zigbee Radiator Thermostat Valve Head WiFi Compatible Alexa Google Home, Smart Radiator Valve Thermostatic Programmable Tuya Smart Life APP“ which the comments showed it was compatible with Home Assistant via Zigbee2MQTT.

This model is also sold under the Tuya and Moes brands, but they all seem to be the same model but with different labels.

Specifications

  • Power: 2* 1.5V alkaline batteries (NOT included)
  • Display accuracy::0.5?
  • Sensor::NTC(10k)1%
  • Range of temperature display::1~70?
  • Default range of temperature adjustment:5~35?
  • Maximum current:90mA
  • Maximum route:4.5mm
  • Thread size:M30*1.5

I ordered the TRV from Amazon but couldn’t get it to setup and the house icon on the front which is supposed to be the main button to access the menus wouldn’t work reliably and so I was unable to use it.

Touch button trigger area

I returned the unit to Amazon for a refund and after returning the TRV, I found this video “Moes Zigbee Smart Valve TS0601 in Home Assistant” by BeardedTinker on YouTube who was setting up the same valve for his Home Assistant setup.

It appeared the button area was higher than the graphic showed meaning the unit I had purchased may not have been faulty and so I ordered a second TRV to try it again.

The image shows the active touch area on the new unit compared to the green house icon which the documentation showed was the button.

Installation

The new TRV is supplied with several mounting adapters for different types of radiator valve, but our radiators have older valves which are not compatible with the supplied fixing kit. Luckily, we have an older digital dumb TRV which had a suitable adapter, so we were able to use this with the M30 * 1.5mm thread on the base of the unit.

With the TRV fitted to the radiator we installed the batteries, and the unit goes through a self-test which takes several minutes to complete. When the test is complete the display shows the current target temperature.

Linking to Zigbee2MQTT

Home Assistant screen with TRV controls
Home Assistant screen with TRV controls

Hold down the central button on the TRV for several seconds to put it into setup mode, click the plus icon until you get to menu item 5 and then press and hold the central button again until the wireless icon starts to flash. This starts the paring process.

In Zigbee2MQTT click the top dropdown to Permit join (All) and the paring will start.

Once the TRV has been pared with Zigbee2MQTT the new device will appear in the devices list.

Selecting the device will take you to the About page where the friendly name can be edited along with other information about the device.

The Exposes screen below shows all the available settings for the TRV. Many of these are not editable in Home Assistant so you can update these in Zigbee2MQTT.

The TRV has a setting only available in Zigbee2MQTT called “local_temperature_calibration” This allows you to add a temperature offset to allow for localised heating by the radiator or other heat sources.

Adding to Home Assistant

Home Assistant screen with TRV controls
Home Assistant screen with TRV controls

In Home Assistant go to Configuration, then Integrations. If you do not already have MQTT installed, add the MQTT integration and once it is setup it will show the number of detected devices and entities.

Click the Devices total which will take you to a list of all available MQTT devices and select the new TRV entry.

An overview page will load showing the device information, Entities, Automations, Scenes and Scripts.

At the end of the Entities list is a link to “ADD TO LOVELACE”, clicking this will open a dialog with all your exiting views and after selecting the required view the new entities will be shown in Home Assistant.

A list of all the entities is added and a Thermostat Card which allows you to set the target temperature.

If you want to force the valve to the fully open or closed position, you can use the “force” menu from Normal to Open or Close and after several seconds the valve will start to move to the new position.

Battery Life Update 28th October 2021

After the first six weeks of the TRV being installed it has used three sets of Amazon Basics AA batteries and one set of 1400 mAh nickel metal hydride rechargeable batteries.

The TRV is installed less than 2m away from the Zigbee dongle so the RF system shouldn’t be struggling to get a good signal. I am now going to be going back to a manual controlled TRV for the loft radiator and have cancelled the plans to purchase five more of the Zigbee TRVs for the houses other radiators.  

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10 comments

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Marco
19 November 2021 at 8:38 pm
Hi, nice article. Is there a way to reset to factory? I have some issues, the main is that valve goes to full open, even if room temperature is higher than desired. I think I did something wrong in the first config, but now I can't remove to reconfigure. Help please!
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Craig
21 November 2021 at 11:29 am
Hi Marco
I have the same issue as you did u find a solution as is it useless
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Luis L.
21 November 2021 at 6:29 pm
Thanks. After reading your report on battery usage I am keeping the old manual controlled TVRs.
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Nick
23 November 2021 at 4:55 pm
I bought 6 of these and was running them off NiMH batteries. The valves would show the battery warning sign within a few days, and stop working after 2 weeks or so. It turns out they don't work with NiMH which only outputs 1.3 volts or so. I've replaced my batteries with Li-ion rechargeable batteries and they've been working solidly for a month now with no battery issues reported.
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Mat Smith
05 January 2022 at 12:28 pm
Thanks for saving me the hassle of buying these and getting annoyed that it eats batteries :) I wanted to play with them, although every time I think about automating TRV in rooms, I think "surely the whole point of a (manual) TRV is that it exists to set the temperature of a room, i.e. relative to the temperatures of other rooms?" A TRV is already automated, it has a feedback loop - once the temperature is reached, the valve turns to reduce heat in the radiator. The idea with a (manual) TRV is that you set it once - perhaps taking into account the temps in other rooms, then forget it and don't touch it. The only exception I can think of is if you choose to *not* use a room, or if like me the head of your bed is right next to the rad and you don't want to wake up with a headache in the night time...
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Robin
05 February 2022 at 8:58 am
Thanks for a very informative article. I was hoping to find a Zigbee TRV since I already have Zigbee build into an Echo unit. Seems strange there is not a quality product available today but providers must make money off selling hubs and locking you in.
Sticking with manual TRV for now. Thanks for saving my time and sharing this.
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Edouard
20 February 2022 at 6:28 am
Thanks for this article. I replace Tuya zigbee trv with Schneider (or Drayton) Wise. It's work very well, no battery issue, and we have a really full integration with HA thanks to the community.
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David
29 March 2022 at 12:52 pm
What Zigbee2MQTT set up do you have? I have Conbee 2 to deConz. It will not pair up with the Moes TRV. I followed the Bearded Tinker video too.
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Brian
29 March 2022 at 2:54 pm
I am using a Conbee 2 and ZigBee2MQTT is running on a docker instance on the host computer.
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Kris
08 April 2022 at 8:12 am
Hello, I bought one of these last year and had the same issue as others here with the valve seeming to go open even when it was above the set temp. I gave up on it at the time but I have just updated to the latest Home Assistant and thought I would try it again, now it seems to be working fine! I bought a different, more basic, zigbee TRV from Tuya at the same time that doesn’t have any built in scheduling, this one has been running for at least a few months on the same set of batteries and works great.

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