How to Get Smart and Upgrade Your Home
The time has arrived to give your home a good talking to. Aside from the novelty of feeling like you’re living in a science fiction movie, there are many practical reasons to automate your household with smart technology.
Make the change and connect with all facets of your home – including appliances, lighting, heating and cooling, security and more – from the convenience of an app on your mobile phone or tablet, or by voice commands when you’re home.
In doing so, you can boost your energy efficiency, eco-friendliness, security and comfort. You might even save on energy bills. The best place to start building your smart home network is with your Wi-Fi connection.
Connecting to the Future
Your first step will be testing your Wi-Fi connection, which is central to home automation. Check your internet plan with your provider to ensure that it will carry the load, or you may need to upgrade to a high-speed plan or get a Wi-Fi booster.
Then you’ll need to choose a hub, particularly if you’re planning on automating the entire home. Whatever brand of technology you choose, it’s advisable to speak with a reputable company that can help in the tricky job of setting up your Wi-Fi hub.
There are different levels to home automation. It can be as straightforward as using voice commands on a Google Home or Amazon Alexa device which is linked to speakers, television and a few other gadgets.
Or you can go a few steps beyond that and really step up to smart home level by connecting to your climate control, smart lighting, appliances and security, all controlled by a central hub through an app on your smart devices (smartphone or tablet).
Setting the Temperature
One of the first things to consider when converting to a smart home is heating and cooling.
If you’re driving home and you want the home to be either pleasantly cool or cosy and warm when you get there, you can turn on the air conditioner or ducted system 10 minutes before you pull into the driveway.
You can even adjust the thermostat to suit the weather. If you’ve got a ducted system or multiple units, you can choose what rooms you wish to heat or cool. You completely control your home’s temperature, your HVAC system only works when you need it.
On the other hand, have you ever left home and then wondered if you had turned off the air conditioning? You can easily check on your smartphone app and make sure you’re not wasting power.
Boosting Home Security
Smart security is one of the key elements of home automation. This means that you are fully in control of your alarm system, cameras, lights, intercom, garage door and more from your smartphone app.
You can even see who’s ringing your smart doorbell and speak to them if desired, whether you’re at home or out. You can record on security cameras and know who’s outside and inside your home at any time.
Given that you can also control your window coverings and smart lights, both inside and outside, it’s easy to make your home appear to be occupied if you’re away for an extended time.
It will give you peace of mind, and simply having a smart home security system is a great deterrent to burglars.
Getting Switched On
A big bonus of a smart home is being able to manage your kitchen and appliances from one interface. Using your smartphone or tablet, you can control appliances and a number of functions. Many popular brands, including GE, Bosch, Kogan, Breville and LG, make a range of appliances with Wi-Fi connectivity.
Having complete control of your oven, microwave, coffee machine, dishwasher and more can help in monitoring your energy consumption.
You will even receive feedback on how much energy your appliances are using. Imagine being able to keep track through your smart home devices of what’s in your fridge when you’re not even home, or your oven telling you the meal is cooked, so you can shift it into warming mode until you’re ready to eat.
That’s Smart Entertainment
The area of the home most often associated with smart technology is entertainment. The luxury of being able to ask your smart device for a certain playlist or a favourite song is already familiar to most people.
Selecting what shows you want to watch or record by talking to your smart TV is another handy benefit of smart home technology. And you can control the smart lighting in your entertainment zone for maximum enjoyment.
The system also allows you to monitor the type of entertainment your children are watching or listening to. You are alerted whenever an appliance in your smart home entertainment system is being used.
When connected devices and appliances are stolen, they can be monitored and tracked. You can also prevent access to your appliances by a single tap on your smartphone.
How to Get Hooked Up
If you’re not sure how far you want to go with smart technology, that’s okay. You can build your own smart home system step by step.
All home automation systems work in the same way but all of them are different, designed to suit specific households. This is a game changer – you can have smart lights, smart locks, smart plugs, smart thermostats, almost any smart home device you can imagine.
These days homes are being built to suit smart technology and smart gadgets, but older homes can be retrofitted and hardwired to become a smart residence.
All you need are smart appliances and smart devices that can connect through a Wi-Fi signal. If you have a fondness for your old appliances, they’ll merely be decorative in your smart home upgrade.
So, your next big domestic project could be to connect your home to the 21st Century and Upside Down will be there to help.
Please note: This information is provided for advice purposes only. Regulations differ from state to state, so please consult your local authorities or an industry professional before proceeding with any work. See our Terms & Conditions here.