Before you start researching the market for home automation products and solutions, the most important thing to be aware of is exactly what you want to automate.
When you know what, the questions How? and How much? will be followed by themselves. The first thing we recommend you do when you decide to automate your home is to answer the question clearly: What do i want to do automatically at home ?
Here are some starting points from which to start:
Everything powered by electricity can be automated. With proper planning and design, any process you want can become automatic. There are a variety of products that you can easily add to the appliances, devices and systems in your home and make them "smart".
The best practice for choosing devices is to specify in advance what you need. Before you start choosing products, we recommend that you wake a list of the things you want to be automated. When you have such a list, finding components for your desired installation is much easier and the variety of products becomes a plus for you.
Another good practice to follow when choosing is to focus on devices and standards with good interoperability (those that work seamlessly together) and that allow for easy upgrades over time.
It is important that each of the devices you choose for your installation can communicate with each other in a common language (the technical term for this common language is protocol), i.e. to be compatible with each other.
The home automation protocol is a set of rules for communication between individual devices. Communication takes place by transmitting/ receiving data from device to device.
One of the challenges at this stage in the development of home automation technologies is the lack of a unified industry standard for these protocols. Most of the brands on the market prefer to use their own patented technologies, which often makes it difficult for consumers to upgrade their systems.
Among the most common standards and technologies on the market are Z-Wave, ZigBee, KNX, X10, etc.р.
Z-Wave is a radio frequency protocol that operates on the frequency of 868.42MHz in Europe. At this lower frequency there is less interference and the generated wavelength is greater, which makes the signal pass through walls and objects easier. Z-Wave based devices are connected via a Mesh network, so that each module that is added further strengthens the network as a whole.
ZigBee uses a 2.4GHz radio frequency. There is the ZigBee Alliance, in which a group of corporations develops automation devices that hold the ZigBee standard. This allows interoperability of different modules is possible, regardless of who their manufacturer is.
The X10 is a standard that has existed since the 1970s. The standard was one of the first introduced in the field of home automation. It was originally used to exchange information through the electrical installation, but over the years the X10 added the ability to communicate wirelessly.
The cost of implementing a home automation network depends entirely on what you want to automate and the devices you choose.
No. You can start with very small improvements by gradually upgrading.
No. Home automation devices and installations can be used in any premises and buildings in which you want to automated processes such as heating, lighting, air conditioning and more.
Yes. One of the advantages of home automation is the ability for remote control and remote monitoring. You can monitor all smart connected devices and for this you need a control centre and Internet access.
With well-tuned rules for automatic adjustment of appliances and systems in your home, you can significantly reduce household costs for heating, lighting, electricity and more.
One way to save energy and costs is to set the lights to turn off automatically when no one is in your home, reduce the heating when a certain temperature is reached, or turn off the air conditioner when the window is open.
Z-Wave is a technology developed specifically for home automation by the Danish company ZenSys in the 1990s.
Z-Wave is currently the leading international standard for wireless communication, followed by over 250 manufacturers worldwide. Thanks to the Z-Wave Alliance, there is a rich ecosystem of different products of different brands, which are fully compatible with each other and can be combined in a common network.
Z-Wave products communicate wirelessly with each other on a network that can be monitored and controlled via phone, tablet or desktop computer.
The frequency used by Z-Wave technology in Europe is 868.42 MHz. Z-Wave devices run on batteries and have low electromagnetic radiation.
It would be difficult to define accurate values because the range depends on many factors - most notably the environment and the type of device. The average range between two Z-Wave devices in direct visibility is between 30-50 meters, and indoors (in a building) about 15-20 meters.
Permanently powered devices, such as relays and sockets, act as signal repeaters and extend the scope of a Z-Wave network.
Battery-powered devices have a significantly shorter range than previous ones.
No. The devices are easy to use and install. Most are mounted with screws or double-sided tape. There are also such, for example, smart contacts and power strips, which are enough to include in an existing socket. Installing some products, such as locking mechanisms, may take longer, but the devices are generally easy and convenient to install.
Yes. Z-Wave devices operate within the so-called mesh network, in which one product transmits the signal to another until the final destination is reached. In this way, the system significantly increases its range.
Z-Wave has the largest variety of home automation products. Among the most popular are devices for control and automation of lighting, thermostats, security systems, detectors for - motion, smoke, leaks ; actuators for - blinds and garage doors.
We advise you to firts make a list of the things you want to automate. Then you can start looking for devices that best suit your needs.
If you need help or advice, you can contact us.