Zooz ZEN20 Z-Wave Power Strip Ver 2.0 Review

Zooz ZEN20 Z-Wave Power Strip Ver 2.0 Review
The ZEN20 Ver 2.0 Zwave Power Strip offers 5 Z-Wave controlled outlets on one strip along with two USB ports. The two USB ports offer 2.1 Amps split between both ports, the USB ports are not Z-Wave enabled but will provide status, and you do have the option of using them to set up charged or standby charging notifications. The power cord on the unit is 2 feet long similar to standard power strips. It has a high-quality build and comes packaged well in a nice fancy box that is similar to high-end cell phone packaging. The Power strip features buttons on each of the outlets that double as blue status indicators when the outlets are on. The manual control of the buttons has a low tick sound to it similar to depressing a key on a keyboard. It is important to note that it is not a surge suppressor, but it does have overload protection. The Power Strip will automatically shut off if the total power draw exceeds 1800 Watts. You can lower the limit any time you wish via your z-wave hub advanced setting configuration.

The ZEN20 works with Fibaro, HomeSeer, Hubitat, SmartThings Hub, Vera, Wink and Wink 2 but the Wink 2 has no Energy Monitoring. You should verify your specific hub works on the Zooz website prior to ordering to make sure your specific hub works. We just tested and confirmed that it also works with OpenHab when using the latest Openhab snapshot binding and that is what we used for our testing. Note that Zooz mentions it does not work with Vivint, ADT, or 2GIG hubs.

The Powerstrip allows for wall or under desk mounting and has a flat plug that allows it to fit easily behind furniture. The plug is also angled and the idea is if you had two power strips, you would be able to put them both on a standard outlet. The Unit is ETL Listed which is basically the same as the UL (Underwriters Laboratories) Listed. ETL actually uses the same standards but many manufacturers go with ETL because they are quicker at approving devices so that they can get to production quicker.

The pairing process was relatively simple, you simply press the button on the channel 1 outlet 3 times and the device goes into pairing mode. Quickly put your hub in inclusion mode and within a few seconds, your device is added to your hub. Upon pairing, we found a switch for each channel added to our hub, the main switch that controls all the channels, two switches to indicate status on the USB ports, and a meter reset switch to match each of the outlet switches is also provided. For telemetry, we see the Watts and kWh readings on each outlet. We were somewhat bummed out that you only get kWh and wattage but No amperage or voltage like the Zooz ZEN25 double plug that we reviewed previously had. Even without load, the device runs warm to the touch however it is nothing to be scared about. It has a built-in signal repeater to strengthen your Z-Wave network and features the latest 500 series chip for faster, more reliable connectivity with the new S2 security protocol.

The device by default will remember status upon power failure and return to the last status when the power comes back on. Advanced features allow you to modify this setting to default the unit to turn on all outlets after a power failure, or Off if you would like. The advanced features also allow for disabling of the buttons so that devices aren't enabled or disabled by mistake, at this point, it will require control via your hub.

It is important to know that the power strip has a limit of 15 amps max. This is the size of a typical house electrical breaker for outlets in the US so we feel this is adequate and not something to worry about. Connecting heavy duty equipment to this Power Strip will damage it and may cause the connected appliance to malfunction so if you are unsure contact Zooz, they have great support for their devices and answer questions within 24 hours from our experience. Zooz recommends that the device not be used by washers, dryers, refrigerators, electric heaters, fans, pumps, chargers, or routers. We easily understood the devices with heating elements as they draw lots of power and similarly electric motors but we were somewhat confused about routers. After contacting Zooz, they stated that just like cell phone chargers, these devices are impulse loads that don't draw power evenly. They discourage chargers because they may not be pulling enough to power the electronics in the devices; depending on the device, it may be pulling too much at times which will cause the unit to overload. This is the main reason that they included the USB port option on both the ZEN25 and ZEN20.

Our experience with the power strip has been a positive one. The device works as described and does so without incident. As noted earlier inclusion was a sinch. Operating the device is no different from any other z-wave device. We believe this is a great device for things like Christmas trees where you will need lots of outlets and individual control. It will also work well for home theater equipment where lots of outlets are required. The build on the ZEN20 is great, it feels very sturdy and has a shiny white finish. We would have liked the outlets to be offset a little more from each other to allow for larger plugs.

To further customize your power strip, Zooz offers the following Advanced features
  • Power Recovery after a power failure, Turn On, Turn Off, Remember ( Default)
  • Power Wattage Reporting Threshold. (By default its set to 5 so it will report anything above 5 Watts)
  • Power Wattage Report Frequency (By default the strip will report status every 30 seconds)
  • Energy kWh report frequency (By default the strip will report status every 300 seconds or 5 minutes)
  • Overload Protection for wattage across all 5 outlets ( Device will trip after sensing 1800 watts by default)
  • Auto Turn-Off TImer (Disabled by default for each outlet individually)
  • Auto Turn-On TImer (Disabled by default for each outlet individually)
  • Manual Control (Enabled By default)
  • LED Indicator Mode (default) on when an outlet is on, on when an outlet is off, off all the time

  • The device currently retails for $98.95 but seems to be much less than that most of the time. Currently, The Smartest House has it on sale for $66.95 which is a fair price considering a single socket adapter could cost you close to that much.

    The Manual can be found here Zooz Z-Wave Plus Power Strip ZEN20 VER. 2.0 Manual (PDF)

  • Z-Wave Signal Frequency: 908.42 MHz
  • Power: 110V
  • Maximum Load: 15Amps TOTAL between 5 outlets
  • USB Charging Port Power: 5V up to 2.1 A
  • Cord: 2.5'
  • Range: Up to 100 feet (30m) line of sight
  • Installation and Use: Indoor Only
  • Operating Temperature: 32-104° F (0-40° C)
  • Dimensions: 11" x 2.5" x 1"
  • Weight: 13oz

  • Don't Use with
  • Washers
  • Dryers
  • Refrigerators
  • Electric heaters
  • Fans
  • Pumps
  • Chargers (impulse loads with an uneven power draw that may damage the device over time)
  • Routers

  • Use With
  • Floor Lamps
  • TV’s and video equipment
  • Computers
  • Game Consoles
  • Alarm Clocks
  • Printers
  • Speakers
  • Audio Players

  • The Good
  • Price Point
  • Status on USB ports
  • Angled plug
  • Footprint not larger than a standard power strip
  • Buttons on each outlet for manual control with status lights
  • Use of the latest Z-Wave chip and the new S2 security protocol

  • The Bad
  • Bulky plugs can take up space that overlaps with other outlets.
  • limited capability on impulse loads devices. Hard for a user to determine if what they are plugging in is an impulse load.
  • Warm to touch even with no load.
  • No control of USB Ports
  • No amperage or Voltage reporting

  • What we would like to see in future
  • Surge suppression to protect expensive equipment from a power surge.

  • Get your very own Zooz ZEN20 at The Smartest House. or on Amazon.

    For Openhab, you can find the latest snapshot binding here
    https://ci.openhab.org/job/openHAB2-Bundles/org.openhab.binding%24org.openhab.binding.zwave/ws/target/org.openhab.binding.zwave-2.5.0-SNAPSHOT.jar. Note that you should be running Milestone Builds or the latest OH2 Snapshot to get this device working.

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