Z-Wave Smart Home Blog

Smart Home 101: What You Need to Know Before Setting Up Your Smart Home

Smart Home 101: What You Need to Know Before Setting Up Your Smart Home

There’s nothing more stressful than wondering if you left the garage door open or remembered to set your security alarm when you left home. But these nagging fears can disappear with the mere swipe of your finger when you transform your house into a smart home.

How Going Smart Can Improve Your Life

When you transform your house into a smart home, you put the power to control your home’s systems, appliances, and security into the palm of your hand. Most smart home gadgets can be controlled through apps installed on your smartphone, which makes managing your home—and your life—easier than ever before.

● Smart homes are more energy efficient, which saves you money and helps reduce your carbon footprint.

● Smart technology makes your home more secure. You can lock doors remotely, double-check the alarm, and view surveillance footage in real time.

● Smart gadgets provide unprecedented convenience. Home automation can take care of everything from making you coffee in the morning to closing the blinds before you turn in at night.

How Smart Homes Interact with the Internet

Making your home smarter takes nothing more than a reliable Internet connection, a Z-Wave network and Z-Wave devices. Z-Wave is a wireless technology that doesn’t interfere with your Wi-Fi network, but allows your Z-Wave smart home devices to communicate with each other. A standard smart home setup uses apps and a hub to connect and control all the smart gadgets in your home.

To make sure your smart home upgrade goes smoothly (and delivers everything you want), you need an Internet speed and bandwidth that can handle everything on your smart network. Fortunately, the amount of data used to communicate back and forth from the hub to most devices is usually minimal.

The Must-Have Smart Gadgets You Need

Now that you know how to transform your house into a smart home, it’s time to identify the smart devices you need to get started. Here’s a look at the essential smart gadgets every smart home should have:

Smart Hub—Pick a comprehensive controller so the heart of your smart home operates swiftly and easily. Samsung’s SmartThings Hub works with Z-Wave and works with Amazon’s Alexa to enable voice control.

Smart Thermostat—Manage your home’s energy efficiency and stay comfortable with a smart thermostat. The GoControl Z-Wave Thermostat is one of the easiest to install and works great with any Z-Wave hub.

Smart Lighting—Automate lighting throughout your home with Z-Wave enabled dimmers, switches, and/or light bulbs. The Linear Wall-Mount Dimmer Switch instantly gives you remote control of your lights from anywhere, at any time.

Smart Locks—Never again wonder if you forgot to the lock the front door with the Yale Touchscreen Deadbolt. It’s compatible with more than fifty smart home systems, including the SmartThings Hub mentioned above.

Going smart isn’t just for techies or people with money to burn. Today, it’s easier and more affordable than ever before to improve your life with smart technology. All you need to do is decide which smart features you can’t live without and make sure you select the right Internet setup to keep it all working smoothly.

Jack is a freelance writer who writes about tech, home services, and innovation. You can contact him at jacktfrey@gmail.com


Z-Wave to the Rescue: Prevent Water Damage

Z-Wave to the Rescue: Prevent Water Damage

Whether your winters are frozen over or soggy and gloomy, the end of winter means one thing for most of us: a greater risk of water damage. Whether it's frozen pipes that have burst, or spring rains that bring flooding, or drainage systems that are clogged, water in the home is a real issue in the spring. Either way, early detection can make all the difference.

Let Your Smart Home Whip You Into Shape

Let Your Smart Home Whip You Into Shape

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?

IFA 2015 LG - Smart Home

GoControl Z Wave AD NSC

Master the Elements with Your Z-Wave Smart Home

Master the Elements with Your Z-Wave Smart Home

Some of the most popular and sought after items for homeowners are things that protect and keep a home safe. Whether it's preventing burglaries and unwanted intruders or making sure your home is protected from the elements, these purchases are among the most important you can make for your family. But what about protecting your home from the elements?

Building Your Smart Home on a Small, Medium & Large Budget

Building Your Smart Home on a Small, Medium & Large Budget

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.

Digital Life Virtual Smart Home - AT&T

Z-Wave Smart Home Lighting & Security

Smarten Up Your Home for Home Safety Month

Smarten Up Your Home for Home Safety Month

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.

School vacation? Let Z-Wave babysit the kids.

School vacation? Let Z-Wave babysit the kids.

Gearing up for school or summer vacation for the kids can be a source of stress for some parents. You may be worried about leaving the kids home alone during the workday – but did you know that a smart home system powered by Z-Wave is just the answer to put your mind at ease?

What's hot in new homes for 2017: Brighter, cleaner, smarter, greener


"The Z-Wave protocol lets you turn on lights from your phone before you get home or open and close a garage door to take a delivery," says Stephanie Miller, Sales Manager for Drees Homes.

Become an Awesome Neighbor with Smart Home Technology


Instead, just use smart locks to give them a virtual key, and to give a virtual key to baby sitters, dog walkers, and temporary guests. You don't need to ask your neighbor to water your lawn while you're out of town, or to check to see if you closed the garage door and turned off the lights. You can monitor your lawn watering, and the status of your doors and lights, with your smartphone or tablet.

The best smart home hub of 2016


Connection to all of your smart devices shouldn't be an issue whatsoever, given that the SmartThings hub offers many of the well-known wireless protocols, including Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Z-Wave, and ZigBee.

Best Smart Locks of 2016

Tom's Guide

Of all the different types of smart home products — lights, thermostats and cameras, to name a few — smart door locks are among the most popular. Going beyond the simple key, these locks can be operated using your smartphone, and can be connected to a larger smart home system to make your life easier.

What's New

A Glance at Top Trends in Smart Home Technology

Security Sales & Integration

Home technology is always moving, always improving, always promising to provide ease and convenience to our lives. So what sort of innovations stand to make a big impact? Here are 10 developments you'll want to keep an eye on.

What Are 'ZigBee' and 'Z-Wave' Smarthome Products?


ZigBee and Z-Wave are the two wireless protocols that pretty much all hub-based smarthome products use. There are a small handful of smarthome accessory makers that use their own standard (like Insteon, for instance), but ZigBee and Z-Wave are the two biggest open protocols out there.

It may look retro, but this Airstream is probably smarter than your house

Digital Trends

One benefit of a connected home is that it should (asuming the system is working) let you know when there's a problem, even if you're not there. It's one reason those with vacation homes are installing smart leak detectors, Wi-Fi-enabled cameras, and so on. And just because your second home is on wheels, it doesn't mean having devices that keep an eye on things is any less helpful.

Basic Smart Home Technology Terms and Definitions


Home automation itself is the process of setting up your home appliances, entertainment, surveillance, and more so that you can control these with functions and features on a computer, smartphone, or tablet. A smart home is a home that has installed products that can be controlled with home automation.