What Is SWITCHMATIC?
Looking a lot like a traditional thermostat, SWITCHMATIC easily installs over any standard wall-mounted switch in seconds, and acts as a digital timer to automatically turn lights on or off based on your pre-set schedule.
Or, you can manually switch them on or off at any time, so you always have control over your lights. And you won’t have to worry about wiring, or hiring an expensive electrician to accomplish it.
The website emphasizes that SWITCHMATIC isn’t just for indoor lights—you can also have control over appliances, porch lights, ceiling fans, side door entryways, landscaping lights, and vestibules, whether you’re using standard, toggle, or decorative wall switches.
Combined with features like a digital, easy to read display (time and room temperature, low battery indicator) and AA battery power, SWITCHMATIC’s digital switch technology certainly seems like it could help make programming your lighting simple.
Therefore, it might also be an inexpensive method of adding security by creating the appearance you’re home, as well as saving energy and reducing your utility bill, as advertised on the website. But does that mean it’s the right option for you?
Over the next couple of minutes, we’ll briefly outline the core details we learned during our research—starting with functionality.
The Basics of How SWITCHMATIC Works
The primary reason you won’t have to worry about any wiring with SWITCHMATIC is that it’s basically just replacing your hand.
In other words, instead of using your finger to flip a switch, the device installs over any wall plate (using the existing screws, so you’ll need an appropriate screwdriver), and then uses a battery-powered plate of its own to manually move the switch up or down, whether you press the ON/OFF button, or program pre-set times and allow it to handle the rest.
Here, we can see how SWITCHMATIC’s plate fits over an existing switch and uses battery power to manually move it up and down. We can also see that it installs using existing plate screws, along with its digital display. Credit: Lenfest Media Group
With these details in mind, it’s important to point out these are SWITCHMATIC’s only two lighting functions (manual and program). In other words, it doesn’t feature light sensors that allow it to automatically turn on or off in the morning or evening, and it also doesn’t come with motion detection, such as automatically turning on when you walk into a room.
But is there anything on the market that does offer features like these? Let’s first address price and manufacturer.
How Much Does SWITCHMATIC Cost?
Two SWITCHMATICs are priced at $19.99, plus $4.99 S&H.
All orders come with a 30-day refund policy, as well as a 30-day warranty against defects in materials and workmanship, less S&H. To request one, customer support can be reached at 866-595-9226.
What Do We Know About the Company Behind SWITCHMATIC?
Lenfest Media Group is based out of Wayne, PA and has been in business since 2007. In that time, they’ve released dozens of popular products, including recent options like Hover Cover, Multi-Cut, Wobble Wag Giggle, and Furniture Feet.
The company held an A rating with the Better Business Bureau, based on five customer reviews and no closed complaints, as of 3/1/18.
Pro tip: Based on our years of experience writing about hundreds of ASOTV products, we’ve learned it’s not uncommon for more than one company to sell the same product—just branded differently—at the same time.
For example, while we didn’t test any of these devices, the SWE Autochron Wireless Wall Switch Timer ($19.43, Amazon) appears to be identical to SWITCHMATIC, with only a different brand printed on the front. And since they seem to be the same device, we think it’s relevant to quickly discuss its customer feedback.
On Amazon, the SWE Switch had more than 720 reviews and an average rating of 3.9 stars. There, most compliments appeared to reference ease of installation and use, along with good functionality, while complaints frequently related to lower quality than expected and limited (or hard-to-use) functionality.
Let’s carry this thought over to the next section.
SWITCHMATIC vs. Switchmate & Other Programmable Switch Converters
Outside of the seemingly identical SWE switch, perhaps the most popular device competing with SWITCHMATIC is Switchmate ($22 - $35, each), which has been around for quite some time.
Compared to the product in question, it snaps into place without the need for any tools (even a screwdriver), uses only one AA battery, offers the ability to set several different timers, and features built-in voice commands. It also comes in two different models to fit toggle and rocker switches.
Another functionally similar device to SWITCHMATIC is the Woods 59744WD Flip Switch Timer ($13, Amazon), which also features easy installation, battery operation, manual ON/OFF switches, and program functionality. It only features four buttons for a slimmer design.
Outside of these, you’ll also find dozens of programmable in-wall switches available (many of which also include a built-in digital display) for as little as $18 both online, as well as local home improvement retailers. In addition to times, some of these models also come with remote controls, Wi-Fi connectivity, and app access.
Compared to the above options, you'll have to wire a switch on each circuit you want to use, but if you have even a moderate amount of electrical knowledge, this something you could probably do on your own in less than 20 minutes.
How to choose? In the end, it’s largely going to depend where you’re placing your emphasis. For example, if price is your number one concern, the SWITCHMATIC’s $20, two-for-one deal might be optimal. Or, the Woods Flip Timer, if you’re only looking for a single device.
On the other hand, if you’re interested in the most robust functionally, an in-wall model is obviously the way to go—and in many instances, these can be less expensive than SWITCHMATIC. However, you’ll also need to wire each one, which means it comes with the most complex installation.
Our Final Thoughts About SWITCHMATIC
SWITCHMATIC features a highly competitive price, comes from a company with more than a decade in business, who seems to have a positive online reputation with customers, and who gives customers 30 days (from their order date) to decide whether or not the device meets their needs.
On top of this, the identical SWE switch timer seemed to meet most customer’s needs on Amazon.
So, other than the initial $4.99 S&H charges (plus whatever it’ll cost to send them back to the manufacturer if you request a refund), you might not have much to lose by giving it a try.
Just keep in mind SWITCHMATIC might be considered more of a bare-bones model, depending on your needs and preferences, since it doesn’t come with Wi-Fi or app functionality, motion or light detection, or ‘smart’ home connectivity.