To Home Assistant or not to Home assistance

I have been using NodeRed for about a year now, the main purpose for NR is as a rule engine for my Arduino and esp8266 devices. All of them are communicating through MQTT. I find the NR and the dashboard works quite fine to me.

However, search through the internet, i found that many use HA together with NR, so I just wondering should I be adding HA into my current setup too? What can HA benefits me?

Note, all my devices are either connected to Arduinos or esp8266 (sonoff, wemos d1 mini, Nodemcu) and I don't have other IoT devices like Nest, Echo or google home.

What are you missing or looking for ? Personally I think there is no benefit, just added complexity. Then again, I try to automate everything and expose devices to homekit, no need for additional apps/interfaces. It is a personal thing.

If you want to know the benefits of HA, you’d be better off asking on a HA forum

If you are comfortable using Node-red then it is easy to integrate it with Home-Assistant. There are numerous benefits to integrating the two - the most obvious is that HA and the forum around it are all about Home Automation and focusing on solving those specific issues - if you have a piece of hardware you want to integrate etc - it has probably already been tackled and solved by someone over there.

It seems that more advanced users of HA use Node-red to do all of their rule processing and automation and use HA for the hardware integration and interfacing - it is a win win situation.

The guys here on the NR forum are some of the most knowledgeable and helpful i have come across on the internet - the combination of the two is a definite winner.


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I've been using NR for the last year and just started to look at HA as well, I'm finding it another learning curve but a good one. I find that flows can get quite complex quickly where in HA it may just be part of the system. One of the major pluses I find is that I find working with the config files more structured, where with the flows and tabs in NR you can easily get overwelmed.

With the ESP stuff, what do you use to program? I've just started out and quite liking ESPHome which intergrates with HA nicely.

One of the reasons why I'm now liking HA, it's just a lot easier to implement homekit or emulate hue for all your different type of devices, where in NR it's additional flows that need creating. The frontend for HA is just really a overview of your devices and like you automation means automation.

I use ESPEasy and Tasmota on my devices - mainly because i do not want to be tied into ESPHome and what looks like a single developer. I am trying to decide what to standardise on though as i have just recently found ESPHome and intend to start Integrating some Xioami Temp sensors into my system and it looks like ESPhome on an ESP32 makes this dead easy (just waiting for the ESP32 boards to arrive to implement Bluetooth sensing) . If ESPHome makes it as easy as it appears i may well look at moving all my ESP stuff across to it


I looked at ESPEasy but it doesn't look to support ESP32's (yet). I have those Xioami sensors, but be warned the range from the ESP32 is limited to max of around 5meter. It works well tho and it is easy to implement.

I was hoping the ESPHome would support hue_emulation directly so could be pure standalone to with Alexa without the need of HA, but it doesn't look like it will be implemented :frowning: I'm all DC so my lights and light switches are purely controlled via a few ESP32's.

It all depends on the flow implementation :wink:
I can add a homekit device with one 1 line, even if that is an unsupported "chinese" rgb light, which is why i never bothered with HA.

With HA, you can add all devices with just adding the line "homekit:" into the configuration file. No need to enable for every device, it's the same with Emulating a Hue Hub (I use this for Alexa). You can also easily restrict to certain type of devices so only enable for lights, etc. or just manually enable for each device. I also used InfluxDB/Grafana in NR for graphing temperature and other stuff, this is alot easier in HA as you can just enable InfluxDB support and it will start logging all devices to it.

I use Arduino IDE to program all my devices, the ESPs simply send and receive MQTT messages and toggle outputs accordingly. NodeRed is used as brain for all automations.

One of the big conveniences with HA is by design it keeps a database of all state changes that you opt-out of for specific devices/families. Graphing this history is then a doddle. With NR you would have to hand-roll the storage yourself. But at the end of the day, if you've got all your devices defined to NR, why would you bother defining them again in HA (although a lot configure themselves in "integrations" these days). I'm guessing most people using HA and NR, used HA first, then added NR (like me), which is a more natural progression.