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Hue bridges are one of the coolest parts of the Hue ecosystem. They power the ability to connect bulbs into a coherent scene and the ability to control Hue lights outside of your home. But can you have multiple Hue bridges?
You can have as many Hue bridges in the Hue app as you want. Most people only need one bridge, but a second bridge lets you have more than 50 smart bulbs, increases the range of your Hue network, and lets you add a second location to your Hue app.
In this article, we’ll cover all of the use cases for having multiple Philips Hue bridges, the limitations of adding more bridges to your network, and how well multiple Hue bridges work with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Apple HomeKit.
Can You Have Multiple Hue Bridges?
The Hue app can support multiple Hue bridges. Each bridge controls its own smart lights, rooms, and zones and acts largely independently of the other bridges.
The Hue V4 app, released in 2021, made switching between Hue bridges incredibly easy. When you have multiple bridges attached to your app, a new button appears in the upper-left corner on the home screen. Clicking that button brings up a list of your bridges, letting you select the one you want to use.
Because the bridges don’t talk to each other, there are a few limitations. You’ll only be able to use lights and accessories from a single bridge for automations and scenes. You can only have one bridge per Hue account for out-of-home control. If you want to control multiple bridges while you’re away from home, you’ll need to set up multiple Hue accounts, each with its own email address.
How to Add a Second Bridge in the Hue App
You can add a second Hue bridge using exactly the same steps you used to add your first bridge.
- Go to the Settings tab in the Hue App.
- Select Hue Bridges in the Settings menu.
- Click the plus (+) button in the top right corner of the app screen.
- Follow the on-screen instructions to connect to your second Hue bridge.
How Many Hue Bridges Do You Need?
Most Hue users only need one bridge. Most Hue lights support Bluetooth now, so you can even operate without a bridge. However, there are still several Hue features (out-of-home control, scenes, advanced routines, etc.) that require a Hue bridge.
There are three major reasons you might need to add more bridges.
1. You need more Hue bridges to support more Hue lights
Philips recommends that you only use 50 devices with each bridge. That’s not a hard limit, so you can go up to 50–60 devices if you really need to. However, your Hue bridge will strictly limit you to about 63 devices.
Fifty smart bulbs is enough for anyone, right? At first, it will be, but once you have multiple lights per room plus light strips and outdoor lights, you can easily cross that limit. Hue accessories also count toward the limit, including buttons, switches, and plugs.
Let’s say you connect your TV to a smart plug to save power. Now, you add an LED strip to the TV to reduce eye strain. Lastly, you put in a button to activate your TV and backlights. That’s already three of your 50 devices just for one TV!
2. You need more Hue bridges to cover a larger home
A Hue bridge has a range of about 100 feet, but physical barriers or other signals can drastically decrease that range. Fortunately, each Hue bulb acts as a repeater, extending the range by 100 more feet. Cheaper devices like Hue plugs also extend the range of your network, so it’s usually pretty easy to cover an entire home with one bridge.
Still, some larger homes might need a second bridge to extend the range of your Hue network. You may need a dedicated bridge for areas that are far from the rest of your home, have a lot of signal interference, or have heavy walls separating it from the rest of the home. Garages, additional floors, or basements are the most common culprits.
3. You need one Hue bridge for each location
Each Hue hub can only handle a single location. You’ll need a second bridge to control Hue devices in a second home, a guest house, or an external building like a shed. You will need a separate Hue account for each Hue bridge.
How Many Hue Bridges Can You Have?
There’s no limit to the number of Hue bridges you can add to your Hue app, although each will require a separate Hue account with its own email address.
I’m sure there’s some limit after which you’ll crash the app, but you can easily add dozens of Hue bridges without any issues. I would love to find anyone that needs more than a dozen bridges for their Hue lights.
Does Alexa support multiple Hue bridges?
You can control multiple Hue bridges and all of their smart lights in the Alexa app. They’ll work fine with Alexa routines, too. The only limitation is that the Alexa Hue skill only supports a single bridge. The skill is required for Hue scenes, so you’ll be limited to using a single bridge’s scenes with Alexa.
Does Google Assistant support multiple Hue bridges?
The Google Home app connects to the Hue bridge through your Philips Hue account, linking the Google and Hue accounts. That means that you’ll need a second Hue account and a second Google account to add a second bridge. You can have multiple Google accounts on a single device, so it’s possible to control multiple Hue bridges on your Google Home device, but it’s not a particularly easy process.
Does HomeKit support multiple Hue bridges?
HomeKit makes it very easy to add a second bridge. You can control both with a single account by just adding the second bridge exactly the same way you added your first bridge. However, HomeKit does not let you add a third bridge this way. You’re effectively limited to two bridges maximum on HomeKit.
Are you confused by that limitation? So am I. Hue has confirmed their knowledge of this issue on Twitter, but I haven’t seen any indication that it will be changing anytime soon.
The Hue bridge is one of the biggest differences between Hue lights vs Wiz and other lower-end smart lighting competitors. With the ability to add multiple Hue bridges, there’s virtually nothing that Hue can’t do—whether you need dozens of locations or hundreds of bulbs controlled in a single app.
Sure, Hue bridge connection errors are frustrating, but they are much easier than the bulb-specific issues that some other brands have.
Looking for more ways to enhance your Hue smart lighting system? Try using Hue Sync with Alexa Spotify commands to turn your living room into an immersive club experience. I’ve also compiled a massive list of smart plug ideas, many of which work with Hue plugs to complement your smart lighting setup.