Limiting IFTTT applets to run every hour

Sometimes you want an IFTTT applet to only run once every hour, but this can be tricky when there’s only one condition available in the applet. Paired with SEQUEmatic, you can limit your IFTTT to run only once per hour (or day or any other frequency you’d like)!

We’ve built a shared sequence to help get you started, so click this link and import it into your account. Then, we’ll take a look below at what this sequence does as well as the settings you need in IFTTT to make it work.

How the sequence works

Let’s run through the sequence step by step:

This sequence will limit an IFTTT applet to run only once in an hour
  1. The sequence is triggered by the IFTTT webhook service (you’ll need the URL from this trigger when setting up the IFTTT applet futher below)
  2. It checks the variable ran_within_hour and only continues if it is false (ie it didn’t run in the last hour)
  3. It then makes a call back to IFTTT via a webhook to trigger the rest of the IFTTT applet
  4. The variable ran_within_hour is set to true so that the condition in step 2 will fail if the applet fires again in the next hour
  5. It will pause for 1 hour (you can adjust this to any other duration you wish)
  6. Finally ran_within_hour is reset to false so that if the applet is triggered again the sequence can run

To get this running, you will need to create two IFTTT applets which are described below.

The IFTTT applets

You probably already have a working IFTTT applet and this is what you’re wanting to limit to once an hour. We’re going to break that applet into two separate applets, with the SEQUEmatic sequence in between.

SEQUEmatic can be added in between two IFTTT applets to limit it to run once in an hour

The IF THIS applet

Your IF THIS applet can have any type of trigger. In this example we’re going to use the location applet when I enter a certain area. The important part here is the THEN THAT component which will use the webhook service to make a web request. When setting up the web request you only need to provide the URL. This should be copied from the trigger step in your SEQUEmatic sequence. Leave everything else with the default settings. You can view the full applet here.

Use the webhook service for the THEN THAT component

The THEN THAT applet

You will need to create a second applet to take care of the THEN THAT component. Here the trigger should be the webhook service when it receives a web request. The event name should match the event name in step 3 of the sequence. In our example this was trigger_event. You can use any meaningful name here, as long as it matches in both IFTTT and SEQUEmatic.

For the action you can use any other IFTTT service – this would be the THEN THAT step from your original applet. I’m going to have it turn on my Philips Hue balcony light. You can view the full applet here.

Finishing up

That’s just about it. Be sure to enable both your IFTTT applets as well as the SEQUEmatic sequence. If you haven’t used IFTTT with your SEQUEmatic account before then you’ll also need to set up your IFTTT key in your account settings. You can read more about this here.

Finally, if you want to use this for multiple IFTTT applets, you will need to use a different variable name otherwise the sequences will interfere with one another. You can just duplicate your sequence, or import the template again, and modify the variable ran_within_hour in steps 2, 4 and 6 to any other variable name.

If you have any questions, post in the Q&A forum, leave a message in the comments below or contact me directly. Happy automating!

How to connect eWeLink and Sonoff devices

How to connect eWeLink and Sonoff devices

Following the positive reception of the Tuya Smart Life integration last month, I’m please to announce you can now also control your eWeLink or Sonoff devices directly from sequences. Read on to learn how to link your account.

Login to your account and navigate to the linked services page. Here’ll you find a number of services which are available to link to your account. Click Link account next to eWeLink / Sonoff to begin.

Click ‘link account’ to begin

You’ll be taken to a page where you should enter your eWeLink credentials. Either your email address or phone number is required, depending on what you used when creating your eWeLink account, along with your eWeLink password. Once you’ve entered your credentials, click Authorise to link your account.

Enter your eWeLink credentials then click ‘authorise’ to link your account

You will be redirected back to the linked services page, and it will show that your eWeLink account has been refreshed. If at any time you no longer wish to have your eWeLink account linked to SEQUEmatic, simply click unlink account to break the connection.

You can remove the connection at any time by clicking ‘unlink account’

Using eWeLink in your sequences

Controlling eWeLink devices from your sequences is simple. Just select smart device from the list of step types and a list of available devices will appear. For a single channel switch, there will be only one property which is switch, however others may have more than one channel which you can select.

In general, the only action available is to turn the device on or off. Click save once you’re done and you’re ready to go!

Use your eWeLink devices by choosing the ‘smart device’ step type

As always, if you have any questions post in the Q&A forum, leave a message in the comments below or contact me directly.

View custom webhook trigger payload

Many users are creating very powerful sequences using the custom webhook trigger. This feature allows you to trigger a sequence from another service via a webhook request, and you can even pass through JSON data. People are using this to trigger sequences from events on their Emby media server or based on weather updates.

In the past month there have been two important updates to this feature.

Viewing content of payload

To help debug sequences, it’s now possible to view the content of the payload which was sent to SEQUEmatic in the webhook call. Head to your sequence log and click the magnifying glass to view the detailed log of that sequence run.

Next to the trigger step you’ll see a link to ‘view the payload’ which will display the JSON which SEQUEmatic received. Note that this is only available for custom webhook requests which pass a JSON payload.

Access parameters from all levels of the JSON in your sequence

The key benefit of using the custom webhook trigger is the ability to pass additional data into SEQUEmatic. In the case of the Emby media server this could be the playback event or film title. In the case of a weather service it could be the current temperature or upcoming forecast.

SEQUEmatic allows you to access this data in your sequence using sequence parameters. Take a look at the JSON below:

Sample JSON for a Hogwarts student

Perhaps this payload is sent to SEQUEmatic every time a student walks through the door at Hogwarts. It provides information including their name and house. When this comes through into SEQUEmatic, you can access the data by enclosing the variable names in curly brackets, for example {House} to get the value Gryffindor.

Now, you can also get the value of second (and third, fourth, fifth, etc) level variables by connecting their names with a hyphen, such as {Student-FirstName} to get the value Harry.

This can be used in most steps which take text inputs, for example in checking a variable value, in the content of an email alert or stored in a variable for use in another sequence, as in the example below.

The webhook data {Student-FirstName} is stored in the SEQUEmatic variable student_name

You can read more about this in the docs.

So, what are you waiting for? Go ahead and see what you can create with the custom webhook trigger. I’d love to hear how you’re using this in the comments below, and as always if you have any questions just ask in the Q&A Forum or contact me directly.

Limit IFTTT applet to a certain time of day

Limit IFTTT applet to a certain time of day

IFTTT applets can be really powerful in automating your home, but sometimes you want them to run only during a certain time of day. Yes, you could enable and disable the applet throughout the day, but that seems to defeat the purpose of automation. Using SEQUEmatic, you can limit the time that your IFTTT applet runs so it only triggers during a certain timeframe or perhaps only at night or during the day. Read on to learn how.

The sequence itself is quite straightforward, and to help get you started you can import this shared sequence into your SEQUEmatic account. Here’s a screenshot of what it looks like.

Breaking this down, here’s what the sequence does:

  • First, it’s triggered by an IFTTT webhook call. Take note of the URL provided here as you will need this when setting up your IFTTT applet.
  • Then, it checks if the time is between 6pm and 10pm on any day of the week. You could modify this to a particular day, and also any time during that day. Or, maybe you want it to run only after dark or if it’s during daylight.
  • If this condition is met, then it makes a call back to IFTTT to trigger your device. You even have the option of adding multiple steps here so that more than one device can fire.

Let’s go through what is required in IFTTT to make this work. In this example, I want my Philips Hue lights to turn on when I arrive home but only between 6pm and 10pm.

The IFTTT trigger

To trigger the sequence, I need to create an IFTTT applet which is triggered by location and then uses the webhook service to run my SEQUEmatic sequence.

In the IF THIS component, select the location service and set the location you need to enter.

Set up a location trigger when you enter an area

In the THEN THAT component you select the webhook service and populate the URL field with the URL provided in the trigger step of your SEQUEmatic sequence. Apart from the URL, you can leave the other settings with their default values.

The action will be a call via the IFTTT webhooks service

That’s all there is to the IFTTT trigger applet. You can view the full applet here.

The IFTTT applet to control your devices

The final piece you need in IFTTT is an applet which will control your device. SEQUEmatic will trigger this applet if the time conditions are met.

In the IF THIS component, select the webhook service to receive a webhook request. The event name should match the name provided in your SEQUEmatic sequence. In this example it was named trigger_device.

Etner the event name you used in your SEQUEmatic sequence

In the THEN THAT component, select whatever service you want to run. In my example I want my Philips Hue lights to be turned on as you can see in the screenshot below.

My applet will turn on the balcony lights

And that is all you need. Your applet here might look quite different depending on which service you trigger, however if you’d like to look at the full applet you can find it here.

Wrap-up

In summary, what you’ve now created is:

  • An IFTTT applet to trigger a SEQUEmatic sequence when a particular event occurs (eg entering an area)
  • A SEQEUmatic sequence which checks the time of day
  • Another IFTTT applet which is triggered by SEQUEmatic if the time conditions are met

Hopefully this has been helpful in getting you started, and you can now modify and expand on this set up for your own scenario.

As always, if you have any questions post in the Q&A forum, leave a message in the comments below or contact me directly. Also, if you’ve found this helpful share your use case in the comments!

How to connect IFTTT to Tuya Smart Life

How to connect IFTTT to Tuya Smart Life

With the recent shutdown of the Tuya Smart Life service on IFTTT, many people are left wondering how to integrate their Tuya Smart Life devices with other smart devices around the home.

SEQUEmatic now supports direct integration with Tuya Smart Life. Combined with the IFTTT webhook service, SEQUEmatic can bridge that gap! Read on to learn how.

Link your Tuya account

First, you need to link your SEQUEmatic account to Tuya. Navigate to your settings page and click the Linked Services button.

Next, click Link account next to the description of the Tuya Smart Life service.

You will be redirected to the secure Tuya Smart Life login page, where you should login with your Tuya credentials.

Tuya will explain what it means to link your account, then you will need to click Confirm authorization to complete linking.

Once linking is complete, you will be redirected back to the Linked services page. You’ll notice the link which previous read Link account now reads Unlink account, confirming your account was successfully linked.

If you ever wish to disconnect your Tuya account from SEQUEmatic, you should return to this page and click the Unlink account link.

Create your sequence

If all you want to do is hook a service from IFTTT into your Tuya Smart Life device, then the SEQUEmatic sequence is very simple. However, if you’re new to SEQUEmatic I’d encourage you to explore the other step types and see what else you can achieve. Sequences can be very powerful and you might be able to create an even better home automation than you had before!

Anyway, the sequence you need will look like this. You can also view this here in the shared sequence library.

Let’s go through this step by step. First you should select the IFTTT webhook trigger. Enter anything for the event name, as long as it’s meaningful to you. Leave all the parameter fields blank. Here’s what I used in the sample sequence:

Then, you just need one other step which is the Tuya Smart Life step. I’ve chosen a single device, but you could also use a device group or scene. Select the action you want to perform or the property to modify as well as the new value, and that’s it! Here’s the step I created in the sample sequence.

While you’re here, if you want multiple Tuya Smart Life devices to be triggered, you can add any number of Tuya Smart Life steps to the sequence.

The IFTTT applet

Next head to IFTTT and create a new applet. The trigger, or if this component, should be the other smart device which should cause your Tuya Smart Life device to be triggered. In this example I’m using an eWeLink plug. Set up the trigger as you need, and then click next to create your action.

The action, or then that component, will use the webhooks service. There’s only one action available in this service, the make a web request action.

The only field you need to set in this action is the URL field. Head back to the SEQUEmatic sequence, and copy the URL provide in the trigger. Once copied, paste it into IFTTT.

Copy the URL highlighted here
Then paste it into this part of the IFTTT webhook service

Click through to save the applet, and your finished product should look something like this.

Now, when the other device (in this example the eWeLink plug called water feature) fires, it will make a webhook call to SEQUEmatic and trigger the sequence. The SEQUEmatic sequence will then control your Tuya Smart Life device!

If you have any questions getting set up, head over to the Q&A forums, post in the comments below or contact me here.

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