With the days getting longer and the weather getting warmer, you're no doubt starting to look at your house with a mind toward some basic repairs or home improvement. Which makes it the perfect time to start adding some smart home enhancements to your abode, as well. Not to worry – upgrading your home with some smart Z-Wave technology is easy.
How much does smart home technology cost? It's not an easy question to answer. It's not as if you can walk into your local big box store and ask for a medium-sized lighting system with a side order of climate control.
ADT Pulse is a professionally monitored security system with smart home capabilities baked in. But did you know that once your system is setup, it's easy to add smart locks, dimmers and light switches, thermostats, and garage door controllers
If you're not one of the 3 million homes with an Amazon Echo in it, there's a good chance you're coveting one. I mean, who doesn't want to be able to tell a lovely woman named Alexa to add things to their shopping list, play a favorite song, tell you the weather forecast AND turn on the lights in the living room?
Working from home can be both challenging and rewarding, depending on your working style. Distractions around the home or loud outside noises can all stand as hurdles when you're trying to buckle down and churn out work.
Everyone wants their home to be safer and easier to manage – but the many benefits of smart home tech appeal to different people. With the upcoming Father's Day holiday this weekend, we thought we'd look at some ways that a smart home makes dad's life easier
If you're one of the roughly 50% of homeowners looking to add smart home technology to your home in the coming year, chances are good that you've either put a lot of thought and planning into your purchases, or you're absolutely daunted by the staggering number of options. It isn't always easy to know unless you look for the Z-Wave logo.
One of the easiest ways of explaining an unfamiliar technology is to compare it with something people already understand. That's why you might hear things like: "It's like Wi-Fi, but…" or "It's similar to Bluetooth, but…" when talking about Z-Wave
How can home automation actually make life better for you and your family? It's a question we hear all the time. There's no denying the enhanced convenience of being able to turn on a light from the palm of your hand, or adjusting the thermostat from the comfort of your favorite spot on the sofa.
Sometimes the smart home can feel pretty futuristic, but often new tech comes along that is aimed at making every day task much simpler. Can you imagine walking into your house, and quickly gesturing at your wall to turn your lights and music on?
I'm an engineer who loves to tinker – but if you told me I'd have to swap out all my smart home products every couple of years the way I do my smartphone, I’d say that's not very smart at all.
For many, home safety and security are intertwined. Seeking peace of mind, homeowners often look for smart home solutions that protect not only their most cherished valuables, but also the home itself and everyone in it.
If you've been searching for an affordable do-it-yourself home security solution that's simple to install, simple to operate, fee-free, and can even be used in a condo or apartment, you may be starting to think that no such thing exists. It does. It's called Piper, and you'd be amazed just how much this one little device can do.
Like most smart home systems, Nexia's backbone is a central hub that not only communicates with and coordinates all of your smart devices, but also serves as a gateway between your connected home and the outside world.
There's an old saying that goes something like this: "If you want to experience all four seasons in one day, come to Alabama." Mind you, that's true of many other places beside the Yellowhammer State, especially this time of year. With the seasons changing, chances are you need the heat in the morning, AC at lunch, and heat again by bedtime.
We often talk about smart home in terms of devices: how flood sensors can save you from soggy disaster; what makes one Z-Wave hub different from another. But when you get right down to it, it's the programming that makes a smart home smart, not to mention uniquely yours.
A smart home can protect you from an unwanted intrusion, but how else can it protect your home? According to the most recent full-year statistics from the National Fire Protection Association, 365,000 home fires caused 12,875 injuries and 2,380 casualties in 2012, leading to $5.7 billion in damages.
If you're at all familiar with smart home technology, you're probably aware of some of the benefits: the enhanced comfort and energy savings, the increased security, the undeniable convenience. But did you know that a smart home can also improve your health and help you get in shape?
I have Somfy motorized blinds, and I ended up buying a Z-wave controller that translates Somfy's proprietary protocol to Z-wave so I could control it with the Echo, $179.99 at Amazon using a hub like SmartThings or Wink, $60.28 at Amazon for voice control.
As this high-tech world we live in continues to bring new advancements to the market, more and more home buyers are also searching for a home that is smart.
A defining feature of the new technology is the way Z-Wave devices actually communicate better with one another as more devices are added to the network.
Exploring not only how a connected home can add convenience and safety to your life, but how it might add value to your home in the future.
Z-Wave wireless sensor: This gadget is perfect for maintaining safety; it monitors the doors and windows and sends out an alarm via text message and e-mail if any suspicious and intrusive activities are detected.
Z-Wave and ZigBee are both radio protocols that require a hub of some sort to translate the language of the device to a language your phone can understand. These plugs are often more affordable if you already use a platform like SmartThings or Wink.
For example, if someone needs to be let into my house when I’m not there, I can let someone in, and can even join with a thermostat or some Z-Wave lights. Z-Wave is a wireless technology that lets smart devices communicate with one another. Household products are made "smart" when Z-Wave connectivity is added inside the product’s design.
Here are 7 things homeowners should consider as they prepare for seasonal adjustments to optimize home performance.