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Best Remote Controlled Lighting Systems (2020 Update)

When you take control of the lighting in your home, you increase your chances of enjoying sound sleep. That’s because research suggests minimizing your exposure to artificial light in the hours before bed can help you fall and stay asleep. And that’s easy to do when you can automatically or manually dim the lights in your home with a remote controlled lighting system.

How does one go about finding the best remote controlled lighting system for their needs? Start by thinking about whether you need the system to integrate with a particular smart device(s), whether you want it to operate using a Wi-Fi connection (or not), whether your home’s electrical wiring can accommodate a system that requires a neutral wire, and how many lightbulbs you want to control. Then begin your search with our roundup of stellar options!

Editor’s Choice

Lutron Caseta Smart Start Kit

Pros: 

  • The kit allows you to control your lights in multiple ways: via a remote app, via voice control, or manually via the wall switch. You can also set the lights to adjust automatically or create custom lighting schedules. 
  • The system connects with a variety of smart home devices including Alexa, Apple Home Kit, Google Assistant, Serena shades, and Sonos, so it should integrate with most smart devices. 
  • The system doesn’t require a neutral wire and doesn’t rely on Wi-Fi connectivity, so it integrates with older electrical systems and won’t stop working if your Wi-Fi goes down. 
  • One switch can control multiple bulbs, including dimmable LED, halogen, and incandescent bulbs. 

Cons: 

  • The kit doesn’t come with a wall plate (it’s sold separately). 
  • The dimmer’s functionality might not be the most reliable. 

Lutron Caseta Smart Start Kit

Lutron Caseta Smart Start Kit

The Lutron Caseta Smart Start Kit integrates with most smart devices and allows for remote lighting control via app or voice. Control multiple bulbs at once and create custom lighting schedules based on your preferences.

Contender

Lutron Caseta Smart Home Switch with Wallplate

Pros: 

  • The switch integrates with a variety of bulbs, so you don’t have to replace all of your existing bulbs with smart bulbs for the system to work. It can also control many bulbs at once. 
  • The switch works with a variety of smart devices, including Alexa, Apple Home Kit, Google Assistant, Serena shades, and Sonos.
  • You can control the lights remotely via app or wireless remote, or adjust them manually at the wall. 

One con?  Installation requires a neutral wire and a smart bridge. 

Lutron Caseta Smart Home Switch with Wallplate

Lutron Caseta Smart Home Switch with Wallplate

Control lights remotely via app or wireless remote with the Lutron Caseta Smart Home Switch with Wallplate. The switch integrates with a variety of bulbs, so you don’t have to overhaul your home with smart bulbs. 

Also Consider

Kasa Smart Light Switch

Pros: 

  • The system allows you to remotely control lights from anywhere via the Kasa app. It can also be controlled via voice and integrates with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Microsoft Cortana devices. 
  • The app guides you through installation, which takes some guesswork out of the process. 
  • You can create personalized lighting schedules so the system automatically adjusts itself. 
  • The system doesn’t rely on a separate hub or subscription service. 

Cons: 

  • Installation requires a neutral wire.
  • The system’s functionality relies on a Wi-Fi network connection, so it won’t work if your Wi-Fi goes down. This can make the system less reliable.

Kasa Smart Light Switch

Kasa Smart Light Switch

Control your lights from anywhere with the Kasa app and the Kasa Smart Light Switch. The system integrates with several smart devices and allows you to create personalized lighting schedules. 

Honorable Mention

Philips Hue Smart Bulb Starter Kit

Pros: 

  • The system lets you control smart bulbs remotely via the Philips Hue App. You can also control the lighting via voice control with Amazon Alexa. 
  • The system’s manufacturer claims the Hub should be able to control up to 50 Hue lights without affecting your Wi-Fi’s speed. 
  • The system allows you to create automated lighting schedules. 
  • Installation is fairly straightforward. 

One con? The system relies on a Wi-Fi connection, which can diminish its reliability.

Philips Hue Smart Bulb Starter Kit

Philips Hue Smart Bulb Starter Kit

Control up to 50 Hue lights at once with the Philips Hue Smart Bulb Starter Kit. The system lets you create automated lighting schedules and allows for remote app and voice control. 

How We Picked

To select our picks for best remote controlled lighting systems, we emphasized the following factors.

Connectivity

Some remote controlled lighting systems utilize Wi-Fi, while others will function even without internet connectivity. If your Wi-Fi is spotty, then you might want to avoid lighting systems that rely on it. Or maybe you have great Wi-Fi connectivity and you want all of your smart devices to run that way. No matter your preference, you’ll find an option here.

Control Options

“Remote controlled” can mean a variety of things. In its simplest form, it just means that a lighting system needs to be controllable by something more than standing at a light switch and manually adjusting it. That could look like voice control, app control, or pointing a remote at the switch from across the room. You’ll find different options on this list, but most of the systems here offer at least voice and app control.

Integrations

Most of today’s remote controlled lighting systems are smart devices. If you’re interested in one smart device, then odds are good that you might have other smart devices in your home. For this reason, we prioritized options that integrate with smart home products such as Amazon Alexa, Apple Home Kit, Google Assistant, and so on. These integrations provide broader options for controlling your lighting.

Sleepopolis Buying Tips

Trying to choose the best remote controlled lighting system for your home? Consider the following:

  • Connectivity. Are you comfortable using a system that relies on Wi-Fi, or not? The answer to that question will help you refine your search.
  • Integrations. Do you already have a smart home device(s) that you want to integrate with your new lighting system? Then keep this in mind while assessing different options.
  • Wiring. Do you have a neutral wire or not? Some remote controlled lighting systems require a neutral wire for installation, while others will work with older electrical systems.

A remote controlled lighting system can make it easier to control the lighting in your bedroom (and throughout your house). This can help you set the stage for sleep by dimming the lights in the hours before bed, among other benefits. By taking control of your lighting, you’re also taking control of your sleep!

FAQs

How does remote control lighting work?

Each remote control lighting system is a little different. Many remote control lighting systems work via a Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connection. Others utilize radio frequency or infrared technologies. 

How can I control my lights when away from home?

Many remote controlled lighting systems allow you to control lights when you’re away from home using an app. These apps let you turn lights on and off, dim lights, and so on — from anywhere. Some systems will let you create lighting schedules, so your lights automatically adjust themselves even when you aren’t home.

Do smart switches use electricity when off?

As a general rule, yes. Even when smart switches or bulbs are in the “off” position, they’re usually still drawing a bit of power in order to maintain contact with the network. This is typically a small power draw, but it’s still more than nothing! 

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Logan Block

Logan is the content director of Sleepopolis, which means he not only reviews new mattresses every week, but also curates all the comparisons, best of pages, and video guides on the site. He takes a straightforward, honest approach to his reviews and endeavors to give viewers an objective look at each new product he tries out. Logan has perfected his method by personally testing over 200 different mattresses, so he’s not only able to discern the overall vibe of a specific bed, but to contextualize its feel within the bed-in-a-box market as a whole. When he’s not hopping on a new bed or working with our editorial team to whip up an engaging sleep education guide, you can find him reading books on world history, walking his dog Pepper, or searching for the best cheeseburger in New York City.

Logan Block

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