How to Set Up Alexa Routines to Control Multiple Smarthome Devices at Once

It’s great to control your smart house with your voice, but it’s even better when you can say one command and have multiple things happen at once. Here’s how to set up Routines to use with Alexa and your Echo devices.

Before this, if you wanted to turn on your lights and the space heater, you would have to give Alexa two separate commands. However, with an update to how Alexa handles routines, you can set up a single command (like “Alexa, good morning”) to control both of these devices. Let’s get started.

Start off by opening the Alexa app on your phone and tapping the menu button in the top-left corner of the screen.

Select “Routines” from the list.

Tap on the round, blue plus button to get started making a routine.

On the next screen, tap on “When this happens”. This is what will trigger the routine.

Next, you can either give Alexa a command to trigger the routine, or have it trigger at a certain time on certain days.

If you choose “When you say something”, you’ll type in the phrase that you’ll say to trigger the routine. In this case, I’ll just type “good morning”. So to start the routine whenever I want, I’ll just have to say “Alexa, good morning”. Hit “Save” at the bottom once you type in the command you want to use.

If you choose “At scheduled time”, you’ll select a time of the day, as well as what days you want the routine to run at that specific time. Hit “Done” at the bottom when you’re finished with this.

Once you’ve completed this step, tap on “Add action”. This involves choosing what you want to happen when you say your specific command (or at the specified time).

There are four categories to choose from: News, Smart Home, Traffic, and Weather. These are pretty self-explanatory, but for my purposes with this specific routine that I’m making, I’ll be selecting “Smart Home”.

On the next screen, select either “Control device” or “Turn on scene”. If you want to simply turn a device on or off, you’ll select “Control device”, but if there’s a specific Hue lighting scene that you want activated, you’ll choose it from the list after tapping on “Turn on scene”, which is what I’ll be doing.

 

Once you’ve selected the scene, hit “Add” at the bottom.

Next, tap on “Add action” to add your next device that you want controlled.

Again, select “Smart Home”.

For my space heater, I’m just going to want it turned on, so I’ll select “Control device”.

Scroll down and select the device you want turned on (or off).

By default, the action will turn on the device, but tap on the big circle to change it if you want. Then hit “Next” at the bottom.

Tap on “Add” at the bottom to confirm.

Then, hit “Create” at the bottom to finalize the routine and get it up and running.

From now on, whenever you say “Alexa, good morning” (or at the scheduled time), she’ll turn on your lights, as well as your space heater. Of course, you can set a schedule for these devices in their own separate apps, but Alexa makes it a bit more convenient.

Craig Lloyd writes about smarthome for How-To Geek, and is an aspiring handyman who loves tinkering with anything and everything around the house. He's also a mediocre gamer, aviation geek, baseball fan, motorcyclist, and proud introvert.