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Best Z-Wave add-on for Home Assistant

If you're setting up a an automation system to manage your smart home, you'll undoubtedly land upon Home Assistant - it's considered to be one of the best automation software stacks available, it's free, and it lets you run your automations locally and privately. You'll also undoubtedly land upon the Z-Wave automation standard - it's also amongst the best automation standards and is already powering millions of homes globally. And while Home Assistant supports Z-Wave, you'll have to enable it using an add-on. But which?

Z-Wave JS add on vs Z-Wave JS to MQTT Z-Wave JS add on vs Z-Wave JS to MQTT

There are two Z-Wave add-ons for Home Assistant:

  1. Z-Wave JS ‐ is the official Z-Wave plugin for Home Assistant
  2. Z-Wave JS to MQTT ‐ (aka Zwavejs2Mqtt) is a plugin developed by pro Z-Wave users amongst the Home Assistant community

Z-Wave JS vs. ZwaveJS2MQTT

The advantages between Z-Wave JS and ZwaveJS2MQTT largely come down to usability and compatibility. And that's because ZwaveJS2MQTT also uses Z-Wave JS. The following are key points of differences between the two add-ons, including points raised by users of Atrim Stick.

Z-Wave JS

  • Is Home Assistant's official Z-Wave add-on
  • Offers fewer features than ZwaveJS2MQTT which some users report as increasing ease-of-use
  • Some users report poor compatability between Z-Wave JS and certain Z-Wave products they buy, while those compatibility issues are resolved by using ZwaveJS2MQTT
  • Allows end users and device makers to help resolve compatability issues by contributing device-specific code
  • Offers advanced Z-Wave Plus features including SmartStart and S2 security.


  • Is powered by Z-Wave JS - so offers the same reliability and compatability
  • Extends the functionality of Z-Wave JS by offering additional features and operational code
  • More features than Z-Wave JS. Users particularly benefit from the control panel UI which offers wider network configuration options and diagnostic tools

Which add-on is best?

If you're building a home automation system, you're going to want maximise device compatibility and configuration options. There's nothing more frustrating in home automation than discovering you cannot access a device's full features simply because configuration settings are not available to you ‐ this is something that severely limits the power of commercial gateways such as SmartThings. Thus, while ZwaveJS2MQTT is slightly more complex to setup, it's our Z-Wave Home Assistant add-on of choice.

Next steps

Once you've chosen a Z-Wave add-on, it's time to get Home Assistant setup and then connect Z-Wave Plus 800 series to it. If you've decided against ZwaveJS2MQTT and would prefer to use Z-Wave JS, follow the link to our separate guide.

Need assistance?

Atrim's team is just an email away and ready to answer all of your questions. If you need further help with any of our products, please let us know how we can help you.

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