The Best Smart In-Wall Dimmer Switches of 2019

By Sarah Kovac and Daniel Wroclawski, February 21, 2019, Updated April 17, 2019

We have lots of choices when it comes to smart lighting, but for hassle-free operation, you've got to go with a smart dimmer switch. Even the best smart bulbs become dumb with the accidental flick of a light switch, but these dimmers always stay powered since they have a direct power line. After all of our testing, it's clear that Lutron's Caséta Wireless system (available at Amazon for $79.95) is the best dimmer around.

While dimmers, and even smart dimmers, have existed for decades, these new models are taking off thanks to smart assistants like Amazon's Alexa, Apple's Siri, and Google Home, which allow for voice control, scheduling, and remote usage from cell phones and tablets.

Even though pretty much all dimmers work the same, there can be big differences in the quality of their app-connected smarts. That's why we found the most popular dimmer switches on the market and put them to the test to find the very best for you and your smart home ecosystem of choice.

These are the best smart in-wall dimmer switches we tested ranked, in order:

  1. Lutron Caséta Wireless Smart Lighting Starter Kit
  2. Martin Jerry Wi-Fi Dimmer Switch
  3. Meross Smart Wi-Fi Dimmable Switch
  4. Leviton Decora Smart Dimmer (Wi-Fi)
  5. Leviton Decora Smart Dimmer (Z-Wave)
  6. Leviton Decora Smart Dimmer (Apple HomeKit)
  7. Noon Smart Lighting Starter Kit
  8. GE Z-Wave In-Wall Smart Dimmer
  9. Insteon 6-Button Dimmer Keypad
— Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

Updated April 17, 2019

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Lutron Caseta Wireless Dimmer Best Overall
Credit: Reviewed.com / Daniel Wroclawski

Lutron Caséta Smart Lighting Dimmer Switch Starter Kit

Product Image - Lutron Caséta Smart Lighting Dimmer Switch Starter Kit
  • Editors' Choice

Lutron Caséta Smart Lighting Dimmer Switch Starter Kit

Best Overall Best for Amazon Alexa Best for Apple HomeKit Best for Google Home

As it's been in previous tests, the best dimmer of the pack was once again Lutron's Caséta Wireless system. This dimmer really nails the software details, even responding to the scrubbing of the app's digital dim slider in real time! The app worked well across Android and iOS, and we were able to connect and control it easily with all three major smart home ecosystems—Amazon Alexa, Apple HomeKit, and Google Home.

Unlike every other smart dimmer we tested, Lutron also offers the only dimmer that doesn't require a neutral power line, something which isn't common in the electrical wiring of older homes. If your home's electrical system doesn't have a neutral line, we highly recommend this system over getting an electrician to add a neutral line to your home, as it can get very expensive.

While the Caséta Wireless starter kit is priced at almost double the competition, it's well worth the money. And once you're up and running, additional Lutron dimmers and Lutron switches can be added on to your system.

The only downside to this system is that it doesn't truly support three-way switches (where you have multiple switches for the same light). Instead, the company offers Pico wireless remote kits to mount its remotes over additional switch boxes. It's not a perfect solution, as you'll have to replace the remote batteries every now and then, but it'll work.

Note: These dimmers fade on and off, instead of immediately turning on and off like regular light switches. Some smart dimmers offer the ability to customize these fade on and off rates, but Lutron dimmers do not. We liked the effect on these particular switches, but we know they aren't for everyone.

  • Works with: Amazon Alexa, Apple HomeKit, Google Home
  • Neutral wire requirement: No
  • Three-way switch compatibility: No
  • Customizable fade on/off rates: No
Martin Jerry Smart Dimmer Switch Best Value
Credit: Reviewed / Sarah Kovac

Martin Jerry Wi-Fi Dimmer Switch

Product Image - Martin Jerry Wi-Fi Dimmer Switch
  • Editors' Choice

Martin Jerry Wi-Fi Dimmer Switch

Best Value

The Martin Jerry dimmer was a pleasure to work with and install. While the appearance of this dimmer isn’t quite as sleek as some others we tested, the physical switch is sturdy, the installation directions were clearly written and easy to follow, and the Smart Life app Is intuitive and pleasant to use on both IOS and Android.

While this dimmer is not HomeKit compatible, it worked beautifully with both Alexa and Google assistant. So as long as you have a neutral wire and you don’t need to integrate with HomeKit, it’s hard to beat the Martin Jerry dimmer for the price. As with many smart home devices, this dimmer requires a 2.4 GHz WiFi connection.

  • Works with: Amazon Alexa, Google Home
  • Neutral wire requirement: Yes
  • Three-way switch compatibility: No
  • Customizable fade on/off rates: No

How We Tested

In order to adequately test these dimmer switches, we built a custom lighting rig to house them for our tests and connected them to a regular home WiFi router. We evaluated their setup processes, apps, physical dimming performance, digital dimming performance, smart home ecosystem integrations, remote control capabilities, and how well they work with popular virtual assistants, including Apple's Siri, Amazon's Alexa, and Google Assistant.

As for Z-Wave dimmers, we standardized our tests by connecting them to the same Wink Hub 2. We then subsequently ran them through the same tests mentioned above. For more on how we test products, please visit our How We Test page.

Do I Need Smart Bulbs or a Smart Switch?

Replacing every light in your home with smart bulbs can get expensive quick (especially if you have lots of multi-bulb fixtures). That's one of the best things about buying smart dimmers and switches—you can convert an entire chandellier's-worth of "dumb" bulbs to smart ones with one switch. Depending on the smart dimmer you choose, the initial cost of installation may be slightly higher than it would be to simply install the cheapest smart bulbs, but your dimmer switch will never burn out or need to be replaced, which will save you money over time. Plus you will never run into the frustrating scenario where you are yelling at Alexa to turn on the light, but she can't because somebody turned the regular light switch off without thinking, and therefore your smart bulbs are off-line and there you are just screaming into the darkness for no reason. Not that we have ever experienced anything like that.

Lutron, the brand behind our favorite smart dimmer, offers a handy compatibility checker that will show you which dimmers are compatible with the brand and model of bulbs you already own.

Smart bulbs might be a more attractive starting point for those who want to ease their way into smart lighting slowly, one bulb at a time. The more expensive smart bulbs are also loaded with lots of options when it comes to color lighting and scenes. A smart dimmer won't offer you the same bells and whistles, but it's generally just less fussy—and tech that's less fussy is something we could all use a little more of.


Meross Smart Wi-Fi Dimmable Switch

Product Image - Meross Smart Wi-Fi Dimmable Switch

Meross Smart Wi-Fi Dimmable Switch

The Meross Smart WiFi dimmer switch really excels when it comes to ease of installation and integration with both Alexa and Google Assistant. The Meross app offers a wizard to guide DIYers through installation of the switch itself, and in the app’s settings there are in-depth instructions for connecting the switch to Alexa and Google. None of the other apps had such thorough and helpful instructions for using the product with voice assistants. The wires on the switch were clearly labeled, and the app (while simple) offers just enough options to get your lights operating on basic routines and schedules. This is just a solid little switch that isn’t loaded with potentially confusing bells and whistles.

  • Works with: Amazon Alexa, Google Home
  • Neutral wire requirement: Yes
  • Three-way switch compatibility: No
  • Customizable fade on/off rates: No

Leviton Decora Smart Dimmer (Wi-Fi)

Product Image - Leviton Decora Smart Dimmer (Wi-Fi)
  • Editors' Choice

Leviton Decora Smart Dimmer (Wi-Fi)

Thanks to sporting a WiFi radio and not requiring proprietary chips (for Apple HomeKit) or extra hubs, our Best Value pick goes to the Leviton Decora Smart WiFi Dimmer. This model performed very well in our tests and scored just behind the Caseta Wireless system. The My Leviton app was not as polished as Lutron's, but it came very close. The biggest thing holding it back was the quality of its digital dimming, which didn't change in real time as you slide the digital dimmer.

Regardless, it still dimmed smoothly and worked flawlessly with Amazon Alexa and Google Home. The only thing to be aware of is the fact that the smoothness of the digital dimming is tied to the adjustable fade on/off rate. So if you want your lights to turn on and off instantly, be prepared to see the lights pop from one level to another, at least if you dim them from the app or your virtual assistant of choice. And unfortunately, it seems all smart dimmers with adjustable fade on/off rates act this way.

  • Works with: Amazon Alexa, Google Home
  • Neutral wire requirement: Yes
  • Three-way switch compatibility: Yes
  • Customizable fade on/off rates: Yes

Leviton Decora Smart Dimmer (Z-Wave)

Product Image - Leviton Decora Smart Dimmer (Z-Wave)

Leviton Decora Smart Dimmer (Z-Wave)

Best for Smart Home Hubs

From the exterior, you'd think this Leviton Decora Smart Z-Wave Dimmer is identical to its WiFi brother, and it essentially is, except it requires a smart home hub like the SmartThings Hub or Wink Hub. If you don't own a smart home hub, I'd recommend one of the above picks. But if you already own a smart home hub connected to multiple devices, these Z-Wave dimmers will likely be a better solution for you.

Unlike WiFi smart devices, which require an Internet connection to talk to other smart devices, these Z-Wave dimmers talk directly to your smart home hub without having to access the wider web. We tested this Leviton dimmer with the Wink Hub 2 and found it performed almost identically to its WiFi sibling. We didn't like the Wink app as much as the My Leviton app, but if you're already invested in that system, you won't be disappointed. And of course, you can control these dimmers via your hub's integration with Amazon Alexa and/or Google Home.

  • Works with: SmartThings, Wink, Amazon Alexa (via hub), Google Home (via hub)
  • Neutral wire requirement: Yes
  • Three-way switch compatibility: Yes
  • Customizable fade on/off rates: Yes with hubs that support Z-Wave Advanced Configuration

Leviton Decora Smart Dimmer (Apple HomeKit)

Product Image - Leviton Decora Smart Dimmer (Apple HomeKit)

Leviton Decora Smart Dimmer (Apple HomeKit)

The third member of the Leviton Decora Smart dimmer family, this version also works over WiFi, but packs the special chip necessary to work with Apple HomeKit. And for better or worse, it only works with Apple HomeKit and Apple devices.

Despite its compatibility limitations, the Decora Smart HomeKit dimmer actually had an easier setup process and a better, simpler, slicker app. And since it works over HomeKit, Siri was ready to control it as soon as setup was complete. The only downside to this dimmer is that it requires an Apple TV or iPad for remote control, whereas the Lutron Caséta Wireless system does not (unless you're trying to use Siri or the Apple Home app). But at $50 per switch, it's definitely a more affordable HomeKit option.

  • Works with: Apple HomeKit
  • Neutral wire requirement: Yes
  • Three-way switch compatibility: Yes
  • Customizable fade on/off rates: Yes

Noon Smart Lighting Starter Kit

Product Image - Noon Smart Lighting Starter Kit

Noon Smart Lighting Starter Kit

For the price, we expected the Noon Smart Lighting bundle to offer something exceptional. We weren’t disappointed. Everything about the installation process felt high-end. The packaging was beautiful and clearly labeled. The kit came with stickers to attach to your existing wires to make it easy on those who don’t know much about wiring (we left those stickers on to help with the installation of the other dimmers we were testing!).

The installation method was very different from all of the other dimmers in that what you actually install is a base—not the dimmer itself. The dimmers later pop into these preinstalled bases. The bases were thoughtfully designed to hang from a mounting plate while you connect the wires, so both hands are free to work on making the connections instead of having to hold a dimmer while you wire it. This is one of the rare smart dimmers that supports three-way switches and it has a lot to offer in terms of a beautiful and minimal interface on the switches themselves as well as within the app. There are lots of customization options and each custom program can be accessed from the touch interface of the in-wall switches as well as via the app.

Even if you don’t have your phone with you, you can access your favorite lighting settings with ease. The Noon smart lighting system is pretty awesome, but if you need just basic on/off/dim functionality, you can definitely achieve that with a much more affordable dimmer.

  • Works with: Alexa, Google Home
  • Neutral wire requirement: Yes
  • Three-way switch compatibility: Yes
  • Customizable fade on/off rates: No

GE Z-Wave Plus In-Wall Smart Dimmer

Product Image - GE Z-Wave Plus In-Wall Smart Dimmer

GE Z-Wave Plus In-Wall Smart Dimmer

If you have already invested in smart home devices that use Z-Wave (you likely have a Samsung SmartThings hub or a Wink hub) you’ll probably want a Z-Wave compatible dimmer so it will integrate nicely with your current setup. GE’s Enbrighten Z-Wave Plus Smart Control Dimmer is one such product and a reasonable choice for anyone who is happy to stay with their Z-Wave smart stuff. That said, we weren’t terribly impressed with this dimmer’s installation process and app responsiveness.

All the other dimmers came with caps to join wires during installation, but the GE just used screw terminals, which aren’t ideal if you’re working with wires that are on the shorter side. That’s a pretty small thing, and probably a personal preference, but the extremely sluggish response time is definitely an issue. After tapping to turn the light on in the Wink app, there was a marked delay (several seconds) before the light responded. This was the case on both iOS and Android platforms.

  • Works with: SmartThings, Wink, Amazon Alexa (via hub), Google Home (via hub)
  • Neutral wire requirement: Yes
  • Three-way switch compatibility: Yes
  • Customizable fade on/off rates: Yes with hubs that support Z-Wave Advanced Configuration

Insteon 6-Button Dimmer Keypad

Product Image - Insteon 6-Button Dimmer Keypad

Insteon 6-Button Dimmer Keypad

Insteon is unusual in that its a proprietary DIY smart home system, which means it makes its own devices for just about every smart home category. And while Insteon's keypad dimmer itself works well, it's really hampered by Insteon's apps. The iPhone app is okay, but the Android app is atrocious and doesn't look like it's been updated in a long time. The app is very buggy, making the switch much less responsive to app commands compared to the competition. But if you've invested in Insteon and own an iPhone or iPad, you can get by okay with this dimmer.

  • Works with: Apple HomeKit (via Insteon HomeKit hub), Amazon Alexa (via Insteon hub), Google Home (via Insteon hub)
  • Neutral wire requirement: Yes
  • Three-way switch compatibility: Yes
  • Customizable fade on/off rates: Yes

More articles you might enjoy

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below