The Ikea Trådfri range of smart lamps can be configured to work with motion sensors, so that someone’s presence in the room can trigger them instead (or as well as) using light switches or the Trådfri application.
Ikea actually sells a Trådfri sensor itself – you can use it to connect a Trådfri bulb to a Trådfri gateway, or operate a sensor and up to 10 bulbs (per sensor) independently.
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On top of that, you can take advantage of the Zigbee support that comes with Trådfri bulbs to make them work with third-party sensors as well. Here we are going to present all the options to you so that you can choose the one that suits you best.
Configure Trådfri bulbs and a Trådfri motion sensor without a gateway
Take a tour of your local Ikea (or the Swedish furniture company’s website) and you will see that you can purchase a Trådfri motion sensor kit as a set that includes the motion sensor itself and a light bulb. . You can make it work without any other hardware and attach up to nine more bulbs to the same sensor if you need them.
This means that the Ikea Trådfri gateway is not necessary, as the sensor and the bulb (s) simply communicate directly. This is a good option if you need a simple and inexpensive motion sensor setup, but it also means you can’t use the Trådfri app to control your bulbs or take advantage of advanced features like scheduling. .
First, use a Phillips screwdriver to remove the back of the motion sensor, insert the two supplied batteries, then put the cover back on. Next, making sure that the appropriate light or lamp is turned off, screw your Trådfri bulb to where you want it to go. Once it’s secure, turn the light or lamp back on.
If you are within 5 meters or 16.4 feet of the sensor, the light will turn on. Pairing should be done automatically between the motion sensor and the accompanying bulb, but if not, hold the sensor near the bulb while it is on and press the button. pairing on the back of the sensor for 10 seconds (until the bulb flashes).
All settings are on the sensor itself. You have two dials on the back: one controls how long the light stays on when motion is detected (one, five, or 10 seconds), and the other controls whether or not the light turns on when the room is not dark (if you don’t want the light to turn on both day and night, point the dial to the moon icon).
To add additional bulbs controlled by the same motion sensor, repeat the pairing process with the new bulb – hold the sensor a few inches from the new bulb when it is on and press the pair button for 10 seconds until until you see the bulb blinking.
Configure Trådfri bulbs and a Trådfri motion sensor with a gateway
Adding a Trådfri gateway to the mix means the Trådfri app kicks in and you can control your bulbs from a phone or tablet as well as through the motion sensor. Once you have connected the gateway to the power supply and to your router (via an Ethernet cable), launch the Trådfri app for Android or iOS.
If you are setting up a gateway from scratch, follow the on-screen instructions to first pair the sensor with the gateway, then the gateway to the bulb (s). If you already have a setup like the one described in the section above, you will be prompted to reset the sensor first – to do this, press the pairing button four times within five seconds.
If you’ve already set up the Gateway with another ‘steering device’ (as Ikea calls it), tap the cog icon in the app (top right), then navigate to Manage devices. Press the + symbol on the next screen to add a motion sensor (which you will need to do first) or a light bulb (which is done via the motion sensor).
The motion sensors are paired with the gateway and with your bulbs in the same way: by pressing and holding the pairing button while the two devices are brought together, until confirmation appears in the app (which should happen fairly quickly).
When you have a gateway involved, the paired bulbs can be controlled through the Ikea Trådfri app, but the motion sensor will still function as normally – so if a light is motion activated, it turns off after the specified time, no it doesn’t matter if you turned it on or off through the app to start.
Configure Trådfri with another motion sensor
As we mentioned before, Trådfri bulbs are Zigbee compatible which means you can get rid of the Ikea made walkway and Ikea made motion sensor and use your bulbs with another setup… like Philips Hue.
We’ve already covered adding your Trådfri bulbs to a Philips Hue gateway: check out our in-depth guide here. If you have already added your lights to a Trådfri gateway, you need to delete them in the Trådfri app and then reset them by turning them on and off six times in a row.
Then you need to search for new bulbs in the Philips Hue app to identify your Trådfri bulbs again. We have found it to work best if your Trådfri bulbs are close to the Philips Hue bridge and your other Zigbee and Hue devices are turned off.
Once your Trådfri bulbs have been tagged and configured through the Philips Hue app, you can use them as a Hue bulb. Assuming you’ve already set up a Hue motion sensor on your system, go to Settings, then Accessory Setup in the Hue app for Android or iOS, then tap the name of the sensor to make changes.
Now that your Trådfri bulb has been recognized by the Hue system, it will appear as an option when you press the Or? label. You can choose the times of the day when the sensor is active, how bright the light is when it turns on, how long it stays on, etc.
Got a Samsung SmartThings setup? Trådfri bulbs work here too, if they are in this list. As with a Hue setup, you must first disconnect your Trådfri lights from the gateway and the Trådfri app, then access your SmartThings app for Android or iOS: press the + icon, then Add device, then select Ikea and follow the on-screen instructions. You can then pair the bulbs with any SmartThings sensors you have installed.