Homey Community Forum

Homey antenna mod


#81

Well, for me, yes :wink:


#82

The next level. Experimental with booster.


#83

Looks great guys!!

I think that these enhancements are far more interesting than a Homey with more RAM and a faster CPU…


#84

@TedTolboom

Has it helped on the range?


#85

Right, there we go… just ordered these.


#86

so 399 and i have an homey pro with better range and microphones XD
if you are serious i think i will hire you guys!


#87

No, for €399 you buy me a Homey Pro, and I will mod your Homey for free!


#88

hmm to bad.


#89

Looks badass! :grinning:


#90

For those that are about to go ahead with a z-wave antenna mod, here is something I’ve experienced regarding the antenna shield connected to GND.

Initially, I did not connect the antenna shield to GND. You can notice this in the above photos. As per my posts, the z-wave improvement exceeded my expectations.
Then, I decided to connect it. From here, big problems. The z-wave mesh was changing all the time like every minute! Devices were responding sporadically only. Very weird, perhaps some interference. I definitely picked up the right GND on one point on the PCB, I checked 10 times.
Then I disconnected it and all back to normal.
I’ve seen a photo on this forum where someone has connected the shield to the opposite terminal of the original z-wave antenna. Actually that terminal is floating (connected nowhere) only used to hold in place the original z-wave coil antenna. So no point to have it there unless you want to prop the shield wire somewhere, I heat shrink mine.

After reading a bit more about RF antennas, I’ve decided to cut off the original z-wave antenna. I did it in such way that I can anytime solder it back.
From here, the reception has gone even a bit better. So I won’t solder it back.
Your mileage might vary… good luck.

P.S. I know a couple of installers that replace the z-wave antenna from the Fibaro HC2 with a high gain antenna. So don’t cry that only Homey has a bad z-wave range.


#91

Thanks for the update Dan!
I received the required parts this weekend (ordered late October :exploding_head:) and installed them. After installing the antenna the reception improved, but I did see regular changes in the mesh but not in such a way I found it disturbing.
Your latest reply just made me also cut off the original antenna :slight_smile:
:+1:

I ordered these:

Zigbee:

Zwave:

The benefit of these are that one has a male connector and the other female so no worries about swapping antenna’s :wink:


#92

Could someone post some additional pictures of the internal stuff? For instance, where to cut of the original antenna?


#93

We also removed the original antenna.

You don’t need to cut of the original Z-wave antenna. Put the soldering iron to the connection points and it will let go “easily”…

I’ll make and share some pictures this evening.


#94

And maybe if you could explain how you opened up the device? Because there is one method which i don’t really like which is pulling through the screws.


#95

@Smarthome had another method for opening up Homey, which didn’t involve messing about with the screws perhaps he will post the image and instructions if you ask nicely.


#96

Oh My God.
image


#97

The top half of the white orb is glued to the bottom half, right above the semi-transparent LED ring that runs around Homey.

You need to insert either a very thin knife (Exacto-type), or a strong thin wire (dental floss) in between the LED ring and the top (on @TedTolboom’s Homey, it was glued shut so well that we couldn’t use floss), to cut through the glue. This is the most difficult part of the process. Just take your time, run the knife around the circumference loads of times until you feel that the top half separates a bit. At some point, you may have to use a bit of force to pry it off (it may sound a bit scary, like you’re breaking things, but it’s the glue “breaking”).

Don’t put too much force into pulling the top half off, as there are a few wires running from the PCB (which is fixed to the bottom half) to the top of the dome (antenna wires).

Once it’s off, you can disconnect the Zigbee and NFC antenna’s (there’s still the WiFi antenna attached, but it’s on a relatively long cable), take out the plastic screws that hold down the LED ring and PCB, and gently pry out the PCB (which is also a bit of a challenge, because it is stuck in there hard).


#98

Oh, careful with this one. The z-wave PCB is located on top of the main PCB. Too much heat and potential to permanently damage something. I would recommend using a precision side cutters and gently snapp of the existing antenna.


#99

I wonder if it’s possible to replace the 433 antenna with a better one somehow?
For example use the antenna that I had in rfxcom which worked really good?
My problems with homey is mostly with 433 Mhz and my temp sensors that I have inside and outside my house.
Rfxcom works fine and can see all my sensors and more but homey only sees a few of them, the closest ones.


#100

I imagine it would be trial and error, perhaps the antenna from homey is already better than the one from the rfxcom (doubtful), but with the amount of signals with in homey, or the cone shape or some other reason.

Something more is needed.

You wont know until you try.