Philips has been providing us with products throughout the home for many decades. One of their well-known, more recent products is the Philips Hue, a smart lighting system giving you that perfectly cozy ambiance.
One way to control this is through the Hue App which requires pairing it with a hub. This hub is called the Philips Hue Bridge and it acts as the brain for the Hue lights and connects to lights and other accessories.
However, even with its stable and trusted technology, some might still encounter issues on the connectivity of the Hue Bridge.
Here are some ways to get you back online.
Hue Bridge Versions
Currently, there are two manufactured generations of Hue Bridge – the 1st and 2nd generation. The 1st generation Hue Bridge has a circular design whereas the 2nd is a square with rounded corners. Can be easily spotted, right?
The 2nd generation bridge is also compatible with Apple HomeKit. So if you are an iOS user, or if your smart home operates within the HomeKit ecosystem, you can make use of many of the features of the 2nd generation Hue Bridge.
General Guide in Connecting your Hue Bridge
If you are a first-time user of the Hue Bridge, you will most likely encounter the procedure below to set up your devices.
Starting your Hue Bridge physically
- Plug in your Hue Bridge to an outlet.
- Connect the Hue Bridge directly to your Wi-Fi router using the included Ethernet cable.
- Wait for the 4 lights or LED indicators to turn on.
LED indicators meaning:
- (Left) Power Indicator – Power adapter is connected.
- (Middle) Network Indicator – Hue Bridge successfully connected to the router network.
- (Right) – Hue Indicator – Hue Bridge successfully connected to the internet.
- (Blue ring around the button) – Zigbee/Link Indicator – Zigbee communication is running. Hue Bridge is controlling your lights.
B: Hue App connection
- Download the Hue app from the App Store or Google Play Store.
- Open the Hue app and make sure that your phone is connected to the same Wi-fi network as the Hue Bridge.
- Follow the on-screen instructions to connect your Hue Bridge to the app.
- Tap “Hue wall switch module” and follow the on-screen instructions.
- Once the Hue app has found the wall switch module, you can select which Room or Zone the wall switch module controls, as well as what the switch does.
If the steps above for starting up your Hue Bridge and Hue App connection are not followed properly, there is a possibility of encountering connectivity issues.
General causes for internet connectivity issues on Hue Bridge
The Philips Hue application does not need a constant internet connection, per se. However, the Hue Light, Hue Bridge and Hue App all need to be connected to one local network in order to produce a single path of connectivity.
Likely causes of no internet
- Poor network connection
- Ethernet cable is faulty
- Hue app’s cache is full
- Alexa connectivity problem
- Hue Bridge and phone operating system compatibility
As mentioned above, internet connection is only needed when:
- You want to control Hue Lights from the app when you are away from home, and
- You want your lights to turn on or off when entering or going out of your home.
Fixes for network connectivity issues on Hue Bridge
You will find below a list of solutions that can help you fix your connection issues with the Hue Bridge. Read along and perform them to test the most appropriate fix.
#1 Restart then reconnect your Hue Bridge
Restarting erases previously made settings and modifications to your system.
- Power on the Hue Bridge
- Unplug the Ethernet cable
- Turn the bridge bottom up to find the factory reset button
- Press it using a pointed tool for 5 seconds.
- The Front LED will blink while on reset. Reset is finished if the LED stops blinking.
#2 Restart your Router
- Switch the router off and unplug from the power outlet for 3 mins
- Plug in the router to the power outlet again and restart
#3 Reconnect your Ethernet cable
Check your Ethernet Cables. They might not be attached properly to the Bridge and the Wi-Fi router. You will hear a click sound when you plug the cable in. This is a signal of a good physical connection of your devices.
Alternatively, if you have an extra Ethernet cable, you can swap that and see if the connection works. Ethernet cables that work from one device should be working on a different one.
#4 Decrease the distance between your bridge and Wi-Fi Router
Move your Hue Bridge close to the Wi-Fi router. Same goes to your Hue Bulbs. The nearer they are to each other, the easier it is for them to establish a good connection.
#5 Hue Bridge is overheating
Check if your device is above the normal operating temperature of 0 – 40 degree Celsius. You can turn off your Hue lights and bridge and let it rest for 10 minutes before restarting.
#6 There are a lot of accessories connected to your Hue Bridge
Control your lights and accessories connections to the Hue Bridge to avoid overloading. The limit for one hub is a maximum of 50 lights and 12 accessories.
If you have more than those limits, your devices will not respond properly or you will lose connection. Why? Because more devices connected to the hub will increase the use of internal memory and processing power.
#7 Update your Hue Bridge Firmware
Upgrading your firmware to the latest stable versions can help you resolve connectivity issues. To do that:
- Click the setup icon and then click the center button to start.
- Navigate through the terms and conditions and click Accept found at the bottom of the screen.
- Tap the Update button. Click Done to continue and Tap the Pair Bridge button
- Scan the pin code of the Hue Bridge or enter it manually.
- Add your Hue lights on your app. Tap on the hue wall switch module and follow the directions.
- You can select the Room or Zone to control and add functions to the switch.
#8 Update your physical Hue Bridge device
All bridges are compatible with all Hue light generation – a 1st generation light works with a 2nd generation bridge and vice versa. If there is a compatibility issue, update your system or your physical device.
Philips announced in April 2020 that they will cut off the 1st-generation Hue Bridge support to focus on the improvement of the 2nd generation bridge.
For those who own the first version of the Hue Bridge, you can still connect to your Lights and the Hue Bridge App version 1 via a local network. You can also access Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa voice assistant.
However, there are some functionalities accessible on the new version of the bridge, as they provide:
- HomeKit iOS connectivity (Siri)
- Internet connectivity for outdoor access
- Security patches, new features, and future-proof system
If all else fails, experts are your best problem solvers. You may contact the Philips Hue tech support and detail to them your issue.
Setting Up Hue Lights with Alexa and Google Home
For many smart home enthusiasts, the real fun begins when you can seamlessly control your devices through voice commands. Luckily, Philips Hue Bridge can connect to popular voice assistants like Amazon’s Alexa and Google Home. Here are simple steps to help you pair your Hue Bridge with each of these platforms.
Pairing Hue with Alexa:
- Make sure your Alexa device, Hue Bridge, and Hue lights are all powered on and connected to the same Wi-Fi network.
- Open the Amazon Alexa app on your smartphone and tap the menu icon.
- Tap ‘Skills & Games’ and search for ‘Philips Hue’.
- Select the ‘Philips Hue’ skill and tap ‘Enable to Use’.
- Log in with your Philips Hue account credentials to authorize Alexa to control your lights.
- Once authorized, Alexa will automatically discover your lights and allow you to control them using voice commands.
Pairing Hue with Google Home:
- Make sure your Google Home, Hue Bridge, and Hue lights are all powered on and connected to the same Wi-Fi network.
- Open the Google Home app on your smartphone and tap ‘+’ in the top left corner.
- Tap ‘Set up device’ and then ‘Works with Google’.
- Search for ‘Philips Hue’ and select it.
- Log in with your Philips Hue account credentials to authorize Google Home to control your lights.
- Google Home will then automatically detect your Hue lights, which you can control with voice commands.
The article above hopefully helped you in fixing your dilemma with the Hue Bridge not connecting to WiFi.
Manufacturing companies provide warranties to each unit they produce, so make sure to utilize it if your devices stop working within the warranty period.
If you are successful in connecting your bridge to the network, congratulations to you!
However, if you keep on getting the connection error even if you have consulted with the experts, it may be time for you to consider buying a new one. Devices like these will still have errors that we might not be able to detect the first time we buy them.
Can I control Philips Hue lights when I’m not at home?
Yes, you can control your Hue lights remotely using the Philips Hue app. This requires your Hue Bridge to have an active internet connection.
Is there a limit to the number of Hue lights I can control with one Hue Bridge?
Yes, one Hue Bridge can support up to 50 Hue lights. If you need to control more lights, you will need an additional Hue Bridge.
Can I control Hue lights without a Hue Bridge?
While some functions are available without a Bridge, such as turning lights on/off and basic dimming, you need a Hue Bridge to access features like light scheduling, remote control, and voice assistant integration.
Can I use a Hue Bridge with non-Philips smart lights?
The Hue Bridge is designed to work with Philips Hue lights, but it may work with some third-party lights that use the Zigbee Light Link protocol. However, compatibility and functionality can’t be guaranteed.
Do I need an internet connection to use my Philips Hue lights?
A: An internet connection is not necessary for basic functions, but it’s required for features like remote control, firmware updates, and integration with voice assistants like Alexa and Google Home.