How to install a Philips Hue Dimmer Switch

1 November 2019

One of the greatest benefits of Philips Hue smart lighting is the ability to control your lights with the Hue app or your voice via smart home assistants. Sometimes, however, you still want to be able to use a light switch.

Luckily, we've covered all the bases: we've got several types of smart light accessories, including indoor and outdoor motion sensors, the Tap switch, and, of course, the Dimmer switch. Installing a dimmer switch – a standard one – can be tricky, often requiring an electrician, an expensive switch or your own know-how if you'd rather do it yourself. With a Philips Hue Dimmer switch, however, you only need the Hue app, a Philips Hue light and your own two hands.

Step-by-step guide to installing a Philips Hue Dimmer switch

Installing a Dimmer switch and pairing it with your Hue ecosystem requires very few steps: it's an easy, intuitive process created so that anyone can complete it without issue.

Step 1: Find a good spot for your dimmer switch    

Because a Philips Hue Dimmer switch isn't meant to cover your traditional light switch, you have the freedom to choose exactly where you'd like your new smart switch to be. Even after mounting, though, you are still able to use your switch anywhere.

Woman in a bathroom pressing on a dimmer switch

The switch is made up of two parts: the base plate and the remote control, which attaches magnetically to the base and can be used wherever you can carry it. The best places to install a Hue Dimmer switch are near doorways or seating areas, such as around the living room sofa or the dining table.

Step 2: Mount it with adhesive or screws

The Dimmer switch can be mounted in two ways: with the included adhesive backing on the base plate or by screwing the base plate into the wall (screws not included):

Though the Dimmer switch doesn't come with the required hardware, you can use screws to mount the base plate to your wall. Insert small-sized screws through the base plate's screw holes. Depending on the type of wall, use a screwdriver or drill to secure the screws in place. Some walls may require wall anchors to properly secure the base plate.

Person holding a dimmer switch

If you decided to mount it with the adhesive backing from the base plate, line up your plate exactly where you want it (make sure it's straight!) and then press the wall plate firmly onto the wall. The backing takes about 24 hours to set, so try not to jostle or bump it for at least day after you install it.

Bright idea: You can also place the Dimmer switch itself (without the base plate) on any magnetic surface, such as a fridge.

Step 3: Remove the plastic tab from the remote's battery compartment

Each new Hue Dimmer switch comes with a small plastic strip that must be removed in order to engage the battery. Simply pull this strip out and the LED will begin flashing orange.

Step 4: Pair your Dimmer switch with your lights

Setting up a Dimmer switch is simple regardless of the method you use, which depends on your current smart lighting set-up:

  • With a Hue Bridge: Open the Hue app and navigate to Settings > Accessory set-up and tap on Add accessory. Follow the on-screen instructions to put your Dimmer switch into pairing mode and connect it to your existing Hue smart lighting system.
  • Without a Hue Bridge: If you have Philips Hue lights that aren't connected to a Bridge, hold the Dimmer switch up to the light you want to control (try to stay within about 15 cm of the bulb or fixture). Press and hold the 'ON' button for 3 seconds until the green light starts to blink. You can now control this light using the Dimmer switch. Repeat for up to 10 bulbs. To remove a light from the Dimmer switch, repeat the same process, but hold the 'OFF' button for 10 seconds

Step 5: Customise your settings

You can use the Hue app to personalise the settings of your Dimmer switch however you like. Open the Hue app and navigate to Settings > Accessory set-up, and tap your Dimmer switch to customise what each button does on one or more presses. For example. you can turn the lights in a certain room of your home to a dimmed state when you press the 'ON' button three times or set all the rooms connected to your Dimmer switch to turn off when you tap the 'OFF' button once.

Different lighting formulas using the dimmer switch

Bright idea: You can even use some Hue Labs Formulas with the Dimmer switch, including Living scenes, Candlelight romance and more.

Troubleshooting the Dimmer switch  

If you are having trouble with your Hue Dimmer switch, perform a soft reset by pressing and holding all four buttons simultaneously until the LED indicator on the switch turns green.

Factory reset the Hue Dimmer switch

Factory reset your Dimmer switch by pressing and holding the 'Set-up' button on the back of the Dimmer switch for at least 10 seconds until the LED indicator on the front turns green. After the LED turns green, it will blink orange for several minutes.

Factory reset a Hue light

Sometimes an issue with a Hue light can be fixed by factory resetting it with the Hue Dimmer switch:

  1. Power cycle the light: switch it off, wait for 15 seconds then switch it back on.
  2. Hold the Dimmer switch within 15 cm of the light.
  3. Press and hold the 'ON' and 'OFF' button for at least 10 seconds until the LED indicator on the switch turns green.

*When a bulb displays "Up to" a certain number of lumens in its specifications, it displays the maximum lumen output of the bulb. It shows how bright the bulb can get at 2700 K (White bulbs) or 4000 K (White ambiance or White and colour ambiance bulbs). Learn more about brightness