What do you think of when you hear the word home? For some people, a home is a place that feels safe.
For others, home is a symbol of comfort and family. Some might even associate home with memories from their childhood. But what if we told you that it could be all three? That’s right! With smart home automation, you can make your house into a smart home where everyone feels at ease and connected.
“The Connected Home: Turning Your House into a Smart Home” is a blog post about making your house into a smart home. It also discusses the benefits of having this type of home and how it can provide safety for you and your family.
Here’s what people are saying: “’The Connected Home’ has allowed us to stay in touch even when we’re away from each other, so we don’t feel as lonely.” A smart home allows people to enjoy their time while staying up with current trends which means that they will have more life experiences than someone who lives without these innovations!
Can I turn my current home into a smart home?
Yes! This is a very common question. Not everyone is building a new home and can create a smart home from the ground up. There are so many smart home products out there that can be easily installed and provide ample benefits. To get started, you’ll need to assemble a list of your needs (i.e. the types of devices you want to control), measure your space, figure out where certain appliances will go in the room (if they’re not already placed there), and finally, purchase all necessary equipment for installation.
This means that you will need to spend some time researching online and then planning how best to utilize each device based on which gadgets work best together. The result? A connected home full of comfort and convenience for everyone who lives here!
Should I hire a pro to help me choose what smart home products I need?
No matter how long you’ve been an “Internet of Things” enthusiast, there’s always a learning curve when it comes to the latest gadgets. So before getting your hands dirty with installation projects or picking up any tools at all, consider hiring a pro who can help you decide which smart home products are necessary for your needs – and get them installed in no time.
What is the first thing I need to add to my house to make it a smart home?
The first thing you need to add is an internet connection, whether through Wi-Fi or a wired Ethernet connection. You will also want the ability to control your home automation devices, lights, locks, and other household items, from any location if possible.
It’s time for you to make it happen! The next step is getting connected with the right smart home products that are perfect for your needs and budget. (We’ll help guide you through this process in our post on choosing what smart home product lines are best.) Once everything is installed by a pro, all of these gadgets can work together seamlessly so that every day feels like one big vacation at home, where nothing ever goes wrong because someone was able to fix it remotely.
How do I choose what smart home hub to use?
There are many home automation hubs on the market, so how do you choose? It may depend on your needs and budget. Hubs can be grouped into three categories: DIY (do-it-yourself), self-contained systems, and gateway devices. For example, if you want a custom solution that integrates with all of the best smart home gadgets in one place, then an off-site system like Ubi will work for you because it’s built to handle everything from security cameras to door locks.
If your goal is just to control individual lights or other “dumb” appliances without having them connected to anything else then HomeKit might be a better option for you since these single-purpose hubs only offer limited features.
Can I use an Amazon Alexa to control my smart home or is there a better option?
There are many different hubs and smart home devices available, but not everything will work with Alexa. For example, it’s possible to use your Amazon Echo for voice control of a select range of Philips Hue lights or other Zigbee-compatible products through the Philips Hue skill that’s built into Alexa. It is also possible to turn on and off some Belkin WeMo switches from within an Alexa routine. But you can’t currently control Nest thermostats or GE appliances such as ovens using your Amazon Echo because these companies have opted out of providing access via their APIs due to various disagreements over privacy concerns and security risks. The same applies to LIFX light bulbs, which don’t offer support either, even though they’re both compatible.
What is the second thing to add to my smart home after I buy a smart hub?
The second thing to add is a smart home automation controller that controls everything. This device usually connects to your Wi-Fi network and communicates with all of the other devices in your house, allowing you to control them from anywhere in the world on any connected device. Some controllers also have display screens so they can be used as a security camera or even an alarm system for added protection.
Controllers are often sold separately, but many manufacturers offer bundles where one hub comes with its built-in controller making it slightly cheaper than buying separate pieces individually. The WeMo Insight Switch + Motion Sensor starter kit offers just this bundle at just $124 (£99).
How do I know which devices will work in my smart home?
The first step in building your smart home is determining the devices that you want to use. These are commonly categorized as plugs and switches, cameras or monitors (usually used for security), thermostats, sensors, locks, lights/bulbs (including bulbs with outlets), water valves, and sprinklers. The type of device will depend on what functionality you’re looking for; a sensor may show how much energy your appliances are using whereas a light bulb might provide ambient lighting throughout the house without having to switch it on manually.
You should also take into consideration whether there’s an alternative way of achieving this task before investing too heavily in one particular product, some examples include dimming lamps rather than buying LED-compatible ones or using motion detectors instead.
What happens to my smart home if I lose my internet connection?
Depending on the complexity of your smart home setup, you may be able to continue using some or all parts of it even if your internet connection is lost. The more involved a device’s functionality is, however, the less likely this would be possible (for example, cameras are pretty useless without an internet connection). You should always have backup connections in place for critical devices such as those providing security and fire alarms.
These will need power supplies with battery backups so they can still operate when there’s no external electricity supply available. If you’re buying new appliances which connect to wifi networks automatically each time they turn on, then make sure that you also get a landline phone port fitted too.
Can the local phone company help me or should I hire a real smart home installer to get the basics set up?
The local phone company can help you, but the work might be expensive and it’s possible that they won’t have all of the expertise needed to get everything up and running. It’s worth talking with them anyways because many will offer packages that include smart home equipment from a variety of different manufacturers (like Nest) for an already discounted price, which is usually cheaper than buying each device separately.
You may also want to ask if they have a “smart home advisor” program. These are people who’ll come out at no charge if you’re having trouble getting things set up on your own or just need some advice along the way. They typically provide service in specific areas only, so check before making any commitments.
What happens if my smart home gadgets stop working, who do I call and who can help me??
If your smart home gadgets stop working, you’ll want to call the manufacturer or their customer service line. Most of these brands have a live chat option on their website for easy access.
If you need help with setting up things like Nest Thermostats and WeMo Switches but don’t know where to start, then you may want to consider hiring someone. If you’ve hired a professional installer, the best place to start when something isn’t working is probably them to see if they can do some troubleshooting with you.
Do different smart home products communicate with each other?
Usually, smart home products don’t communicate with each other and are made to work as standalone gadgets. If you have an Apple HomeKit device, then your devices should be able to talk amongst themselves, however, this will vary between brands.
Want a more robust solution? Consider using something like Stringify or IFTTT that can help bridge the gap in communication between different types of smart home products (for example, if one product is connected via Bluetooth but not Wi-Fi). You’ll need access to both apps for this setup though, so it’s probably best left up to advanced users only at this point.
How do I know a smart home device will work with my system?
As mentioned above, this is going to depend on the type of smart home system you are using. If your devices communicate via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth, then any device that connects in those manners should work with your setup. But again, you will want to check the specific product’s requirements before purchase. It may be a good idea to research which types of systems other users have had success with, and see if there are general patterns as well.
Just like everything else, the internet can be a great resource. Just make sure you are listening to folks who know what they’re talking about. Feeling over your head? Contact Play where we can design, install, and maintain all of your smart home needs.