Electronic home automation involves connecting your home electronics to a module that allows you to remotely control their settings via computers, tablets, or even cell phones.
Snowing on the drive home? Turn on the heat from your cell phone.
Left the lights on when you left? No problem! Turn them off via your iPad.
The possibilities with these types of systems are endless. Depending on which specific brand you decide to purchase, your customization options will vary but most include custom theme settings (mood lighting, music, etc) as well as the ability to set timers for various electronics. Some of the more advanced systems also give you the option of using motion sensors to trigger events.
How Does It All Work
Without getting into too many technical details, there are essentially two main components to most electronic automation systems.
The first, is a hardware component that plugs into your standard wall outlet. It uses your home’s existing wiring to be able to control the settings on your appliances meaning there is no need to install additional wiring.
The second component is usually a software application of some sort that allows you to control your devices via a user interface. Most companies that are selling automation systems provide software or applications that are compatible with:
- Other cell phones
Most of the systems require that you have an active wi-fi connection available in your home and an available PC or Mac.
How Much Does It Cost
Prices range anywhere from $75 to $500 and up for more complex systems. One of the factors that will ultimately determine how expensive (or inexpensive) your system will be is how many different types of electronics you want to automate.
For example, if you are only looking to automate a few lights around your home, the system would be relatively inexpensive. However, if you wanted to control your lights, HVAC, sliding curtains, entertainment system, and security system, you will likely be spending a bit more.
The reason for this is that some automation systems require different adapters for each of the different types of appliances you want to integrate into the system. Each of these adapters typically costs between $50 and $100. Obviously, your total cost can skyrocket rather quickly.
What Are The Benefits
Aside from the convenience of using a system like this, you can also save a substantial amount of money each year by reducing energy consumption.
With the ability to attach everyday appliances to timers, you can essentially minimize your energy usage by reducing waste. Not only are you saving money on your monthly electric bill, but you will also be supporting a more sustainable way of living. If setup correctly, the system could theoretically pay for itself within a year through energy management.
Electronic home automation is a great way for you to add a unique touch to your home, and save money at the same time!