Posts in General


How to Use Z-Wave Smart Plugs Outside With GFCI Safely

Posted on 21st Feb 2021 18:24:07 in General, Smart

When most people think of a smart home, they think of lights turning on and off themselves or coffee being made automatically in the morning. All of these things are related in one crucial way: they use electricity. A computer can send them commands by transmitting data wirelessly to the desired device. What about outdoors or other locations where water could be present? You need to be careful as water combined with electricity can be dangerous. Let's see how we can use a Z-Wave plug in areas such as the outdoors or a bathroom.

Using smart plugs outdoors isn't simple

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3 Awesome Ways to Keep Your Home's Windows Safe With Z-Wave

Posted on 13th Feb 2021 17:39:00 in General, Smart

The idea that your house could be broken into is never something anyone wants to consider. Unfortunately, these things can happen, and the only realistic way to prevent severe damage is to have an alarm system in place. Many homeowners deal with a common problem with the presence of a large window on the ground level, which is almost an invitation for someone to break in. While breaking windows may not be the ideal entry method, it's still common and could result in all your valuables being stolen. A glass break sensor is often used to detect this situation and sound an alarm that will alert everyone while also calling for help in some cases. Let's see how these can be used with Z-Wave along with whether you should use them at all.

Z-Wave glass break sensor

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How to Build a DIY RGB Wall For Cheap With ColorWall

Posted on 7th Feb 2021 19:24:11 in DIY, General, Home Assistant, Tutorial

LED strips have become a popular option for decorating a room as they can be used to create a vastly different ambience with the press of a button. While strips are awesome, they aren't always the most practical thing as they can be difficult to mount in the right way for your application. To make things easier, some companies sell light panels which are easy to mount directly on the wall. They can change color and offer tons of effects to keep things interesting. The most common product in this space is perhaps the "Nanoleaf light panel" which does the job perfectly, albeit a bit expensively. To save some money and get additional personalization I built my own light panels in a project I call ColorWall.

ColorWall DIY light panels

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7 Awesome Ways To Use Home Automation While Renting

Posted on 25th Jan 2021 19:31:34 in General, Smart

Home automation is a great technology that keeps getting better as the various ecosystems achieve widespread adoption and broader compatibility. Many people rent their living space for a variety of reasons which can make home automation difficult. That's because a common downside is that renters are usually not allowed to make changes to the building in any useful way which often discourages them from venturing into the world of smart homes. The reality is that there are plenty of ways you can make your rented space smarter! Here are 9 awesome ways to make your rental smart!

Home Automation while renting can be complicated

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The 4 Best Offline Smart Plugs

Posted on 23rd Jan 2021 17:29:32 in General, Smart

Let's say you are building a smart home and the time has come to purchase smart plugs. As smart plugs can be used to control virtually anything ranging from toasters to air conditioners, they are a must in any smart home. A quick look at what's available will quickly highlight the compromise most of the market is making: using cloud devices to reduce cost. Regardless of who actually runs the servers, anyone who cares about privacy will want an alternative. Here are the 4 best smart plugs that don't need any cloud connection.

The best offline smart plugs

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