Install & Configuration of GE In-Wall Smart Outlet
I’ll be replacing the outlet in my kids entertainment room where they have their consoles (XBox and Wii) connected. This will not only give me wireless control of their playing time on the consoles but also allow for me to setup the devices on a schedule where they can only play their games during certain hours (like after homework) or on the weekends. Not only will this cut down on their screen time but will also help save energy costs as these consoles use a ton of energy even when they are off (sleeping).
Here’s the decor style outlet that I will be replacing, nothing special here it’s the most utilized outlet in US homes.
After removing the cover plate and unscrewing the outlet from the outlet box, I found the wiring. Before doing any of this, be sure your breaker is turned off!
I removed the wires from the existing outlet and then wired the new switch in to the existing wires per the manual.
Finally, I secured the new GE In-Wall outlet in place within the electrical box. The entire process maybe took 10 minutes, but definitely no more. The top outlet is the always on and the bottom one is the Z-Wave controlled (indicated by the logo). In the center there is a blue indicator light which can either be on when the outlet is on, off when the outlet is off, or off entirely if you prefer not to have an indicator light. The center button can manually turn on and off the Z-Wave switch. This is handy if you’re having issues with your smart home hub or want to manually turn it on.
Finally, here’s the finished look with the cover plate. Since I replaced a decor style outlet with this duplex outlet, I had to purchase this outlet cover as the decor style cover will not fit. Keep this in mind when purchasing these outlets, so you know how many outlet covers that you need to purchase. I bought mine at a local hardware store for about 50 cents. They are very affordable and can be found in the electrical aisles.
As far as automating the GE In-Wall Z-Wave outlet, it works the same way that the Plug-in modules worked. I was able to quickly find the outlet within the Smartthings hub application. I was then able to setup a schedule that the outlet will turn on and off, to help control my kids console time which has been working out great! They know the exact time that it comes on and goes off now, which helps keep them on a schedule (which kids need) and I don’t constantly have to keep telling them to turn it off and go outside! All at the same time, I’m saving countless dollars per month as the consoles are running 2 hours a day instead of 24 hours a day.
As I mentioned before, the lack of these outlets being ZigBee means I cannot track the energy usage which is very unfortunately. What’s worse, GE does not currently have a ZigBee in-wall outlet product, bummer!
Read on to the next page to learn my final thoughts and overall impression of this GE In-Wall outlet.