The Ultimate Guide to Inching Feature

The Ultimate Guide to Inching Feature

What is the Inching feature

First thing first, many of you may ask “what the heck is an inching switch?” Inching is also called jogging. The definition of jogging or inching by NEMA is “the quickly repeated closure of a circuit to start a motor from rest for the purpose of accomplishing small movements of the driven machine.” In short, this kind of switch allows you to turn it on for a short time. That’s also why sometimes it is also called a momentary switch.

In the past, eWeLink Support devices include physical inching switches, which have higher requirements for background knowledge on the users. You must be very familiar with DIY and comfortable with wiring. However, this is such a useful type of switch that we realize we should make it easy to use for everyone.

Therefore, we released the inching feature for our regular plugs and switches. This feature changes your normal switch into a virtual momentary switch. It allows you to turn on your connected device for a preset duration ranging from 0.5 seconds to 3600 seconds (1 hour).

Where To Use It

1.Auto-off Scenarios

Even though schedules and timers are very useful to control devices at preset timing, they can not meet the demand for turning off devices automatically each time the device is turned on, regardless of how it is activated. Considering that you cannot set a scene with the same device being the condition and action, the inching feature is the best option for you.

Exhaust Fan

You can enable the inching feature on a switch connected to an exhaust fan so that it turns off in 3 minutes each time it is turned on.

Access Control

Turn your access control smart in a few minutes. Just set an inching duration to release the door magnet for a few seconds and turn the circuit off to close the gate.

Aquarium Pump

Schedule to turn on your aquarium pump to supplement oxygen and set an inching duration of 30 minutes when oxygen is enough.

2.Momentary Switch Scenarios

Garage door

Adding app control to your garage door has never been easier. Just connect your traditional garage door controller with an eWeLink Support switch and set an inching duration of 0.5 seconds to send a pulse to the garage door controller to open and close the garage door.

Supported Devices

Supported App version: eWeLink V4.0 or above

The inching feature is now available for most 1-gang and multi-gang switches and plugs. For the best outcome, you are recommended to always keep your eWeLink app and device firmware up-to-date.


SONOFF BASICR3 is a 1-gang universal WiFi smart switch that turns anything smart and adds the inching feature to any home appliances.


The compact size and neat design make SONOFF MINIR2 a perfect match for an external switch upgrade, not to mention that it supports 3 connection modes for your diversified needs.


For a complicated Aquarium system that has multiple channels for different functions, the 4-gang SONOFF 4CHR3/PROR3 serves as a central control panel and allows for inching features enabled separately on different channels.

How to Set It Up

Click here to learn how to set up the inching feature and its duration.

I would like to use a Sonoff PIR3 to activate a light using a ZBMINI-L. I can get it to switch on but I would like the light to switch off again after a time. I cannot find any inching-function on these devices. Is there a way to accomplish what I need? Maybe using other devices?

Hi there, I think an auto scene could help.

Hi Stephen, I have a similar issue with not being able to inch a ZBMINI.
Ideally I’d like to have one auto scene
If - ZBMINI on
Then - delay ….
Then - ZBMINI off
(Actually ideally I’d just like to have an inching ZbMini lol)
Only way I can get it to inch is having a manual scene to turn it off then creating an auto scene with a delay to then trigger the manual scene off, which gets is pretty messy when you have a few ZBMINIS.
Any easier, cleaner way?
Thanks Jake.

Hello folks. I am a brand new eWelink owner and enjoying some success. However the “Inching” feature will not allow my relays to stay activated for longer then momentary. The app says my changes are saved and I was successful but the relays are still momentary. Any help you can offer would be greatly appreciated.

Good morning every one
Can we inverse the inching ?
That means the sonoff basic R2 is always on and when I activate it he turns off for 5 sec and turn on again.
For exemple to restart the modem.

Hi there, could you provide the device ID? Some devices already support the inching mode - reverse function. I can check if this device supports it.

Hi @StephenJ

Any answere?

Hi there, at present, some device models, such as SONOFF MINIR3 and S40, have implemented the Inching-ON feature. I will pass on your suggestion to the team for evaluating the implementation of this feature in the next several product models.

Please enable inching on ZigBee mini l2 devices

The Zigbee devices like Zigbee switches should comply with Zigbee 3.0 protocol created by CSA. However, a feature like inching mode is not included in the standards. Therefore, we won’t be able to add the inching mode to the Zigbee devices.

Hello, appreciate your reply. I asked because tuya ZigBee devices has inching option and I was wondering if possible for sonoff ZigBee as well.

I have a Zigbee plug (OEM model which is advertised as “works with eWeLink”) which DOES have Inching, but only gets presented when paired with the iHost. The option isn’t available on the eWeLink app when paired with a Zigbee bridge.

Hi there, thanks for the additional info. After the confirmation, it’s feasible to add the inching mode to Zigbee devices, however, whether we will add this feature to the Zigbee devices depends on Sonoff’s requirement. So far, we haven’t received any plan from Sonoff to implement it.

Hello, thank you for your feedback .

Hi there,
I am trying to water plants using a Sonoff TH-R316D with a soil humidity sensor.

The sensor updates very slowly and my pump is rather strong, so by the time the sensor reacts to fresh water, the pot will overflow, unless I can get some INCHING going.
Ideally, it should water for 3 seconds, then wait 30 minutes, and repeat.

However, even if the inching will try to toggle the pump off after 3 seconds (it clicks!), the sensor logic turns it back on right away.

Somehow, inching seems to work on manual triggers only with that device ?

Can I fix that somehow?

Hi there, you can take advantage of Delay in Scene. Create a Scene like this one:

When the temperature is higher than xxx

Turn on pump
Delay for 3 seconds
Turn off pump
Delay for 30 minutes
Turn on pump
Delay for 3 seconds
Turn off pump

1 Like

Thank you, this approach works!
Unfortunately, a delay cannot be at the end, or the beginning of a scene. So I would need to pump on - delay 3s - pump off - delay 30min - pump on - delay 3s - pump off - and repeat

Instead I resorted to create a manual scene that activates the pump for 3 seconds, and call that at two fixed times a day (20h+20:30) if the humitity condition is met.
This way I am also sure not to overflow or run the pump dry if something hangs.

I also have to say that the Sonoff MS01 soil moisture sensor is really difficult to work with. It has a narrow range of meaningful readings and a lot of error margin. In my case, 40% moisture equals literally dripping wet (so 100% by my definition), and less than 20% is too dry for anything but a cactus. In fact, I have to keep moisture readings between 25 and 30 % to keep the plant alive, but if the sensor is 2cm closer to the pot’s rim, the reading will differ by more than 5% - so no two sensor locations / pots are compareable. I suggest to plant the sensor as close to the center of the pot as possible (ouch).

It’s true that the delay cannot be at the end because the scene requires the device to be at the end to execute the final action.

As for the performance of the soil moisture sensor, I think you can bring it to Sonoff’s attention.