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What is Home Automation?

What is Home Automation?

Over the course of several years we have experienced an increase trend in automated homes with the rise of “smart” technology. From smart televisions to smart thermostats, our everyday lives are becoming more connected. It is now easy to control utilities and different features of your home through the internet with your smartphone, computer or tablet. Many people are turning to home automation to make their lives easier, more comfortable and to help spend less on bills.

 

Elan Home System

 

There are Many Reasons to Automate Your Home

 

Comfort and Convenience

Settings are in place to automatically control your environment around you. For example, blinds automatically rising up when it is time for you to get up, allowing you a peaceful transition into a new day. With a smart thermostat your home will always be the right temperature for you. Your favorite music can play from a wireless speaker without you having to leave your couch. The possibilities are endless in creating a comfortable environment for you and your family.

 

Enjoying Lutron Blinds

 

Energy Efficiency

Smart thermostats and lighting control can lower your energy consumption and can reduce energy costs up to 20 percent. Smart thermostats, like the Nest thermostat, learn your preferences and adjust the temperature accordingly, also noting when you are home and when you are away. When your air filter needs changing, Nest will let you know, keeping you organized and your systems running efficiently.

 

Nest Thermostat

 

Entertainment

Create an ultimate home theater. Make lights dim and set up a perfect atmosphere to enjoy a movie. Have motorized projector screen that comes down from the ceiling for a private theater experience. Enjoy a wireless music system and play your favorite songs without sacrificing sound quality and without the complicated cables and cords.

 

AIC Home Theater

 

Safety and Peace of Mind

You can monitor your home from anywhere in the world. Access your security camera feeds from your smart phone and receive alerts when someone is at your door.

 

Security

 

Remote Access

Control your home from your smartphone when you are away. From checking locks to adjusting thermostats you can do it all from your smartphone. No more wondering if you locked your door after you left your house. You can simply check your app and lock your home remotely. Have a rental property? After guests leave you can access the thermostats and change settings, saving you money when the home is vacant.

 

Checking the Phone

 

How Does it Work?

Automation is already a daily aspect in our lives. Coffee makers are equipped with timers so you can have fresh coffee in the morning. When you open your car door, a light comes on to help you see at night. However, your coffee maker and the light in your car are not connected and run independently from each other.

This is what makes home automation is different.  Instead of devices running independently from each other, they are all connected through a network and controlled by a main system. This main system is called a master home automation controller.  The master home automation controller receives input from all the devices on the network and then issues commands based on the programmed settings. Below is a picture of a rack with an ELAN master home automation controller.

 

AIC Rack

 

These are two main types of events that cause a reaction, timed and triggered events. A coffee maker, for example, runs on a timed event. You set the time you would like your coffee to brew and the next morning the coffee is ready for you. Your car door light is an example of a triggered event. Opening the door triggers the light to come on. There are three components for these events to happen, sensors, controllers, and actuators.

 

Sensors

 

Sensors monitor changes such as temperature, motion, and daylight. Sensors help the master home automation controller’s system adjust settings based on your preferences. Controllers would be your smart devices, such as smartphones, computers, and tablets. It gives you the ability to make changes and monitor the system. Actuators are the actual mechanism or function that moves, such as a motor or a switch.

 

Is Home Automation For You?

Home automation can be as expansive as you would like, whether you start with just one room, or the whole house. When considering automation for your home, think of tasks that you do routinely, such as setting the thermostat, drawing the blinds, and turning on and off lights. Automating these features in your home can not just reduce energy costs and provide a comfortable atmosphere, but also make your daily routine easier.

Buying a smart hub like Google Home, is an easy way to get your toes wet in the home automation world. Google home will connect your smart devices together and provide to be an excellent personal assistant.

 

Google Home

 

Whether you want to automate one room, or a whole house, contact us to set up a consultation today and discover how AIC can bring automation into your home.

Written by: Erika Krieger
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