Z-Wave Smart Home Blog

Top Tips to Getting Started with a Z-Wave Smart Home

Top Tips to Getting Started with a Z-Wave Smart Home

With Josh from ZWaveZone.com

This month we're going back to basics with Josh from ZWaveZone.com, an awesome resource for everything Z-Wave home automation related. If you're new to the world of smart home, you may be wondering where to start and how using Z-Wave can benefit you and your home. Josh offers his top tips and tricks to getting started with a Z-Wave home and products he loves.

How should homeowners prepare for installing Z-Wave products in their home if they have no experience with smart home technology?

The most important thing to do when thinking about installing Z-Wave products in your home is to plan out what you want to be able to do with those devices. It's easy to see some really cool devices on the market and buy them without really knowing what you're going to use them for - trust me I've done it. That can get expensive fast, which is why planning is very important before embarking on the journey to a smarter home. Before I transformed my place into a Z-Wave smart home, I had never ever replaced a light switch - much less 30 or more. After spending some time learning how to install these devices, it I discovered that it was easier than I had anticipated. I highly suggest checking out the Resources page on Z-Wave.com and Zwavezone.com prior to starting your smart home project.

What are a few of your favorite Z-Wave devices for first time smart home product buyers?

My house is chock-full of Z-Wave devices, which means I've installed and worked with quite a few of them so it's hard to pick just one. My all-time favorite Z-Wave devices are Schlage's line of smart deadbolts. They're easy to install, easy to program, and feature an awesome warranty. They also work with virtually every Z-Wave hub out there and you can program in many different codes and many even feature a built-in alarm, which can alert you if someone is trying to get in your front door. Another device I absolutely love is the Fibaro Z-Wave Motion/Multi Sensor that also monitors light and temperature, so you can get very creative with your programming!

Any tips on setting up a Z-Wave smart home that newbies should know?

The best thing you can do is start out simple. You don't need to replace every light and device in your home right away, as that would be pretty expensive. I suggest just chipping away at it as you see more and more devices you want to control. In addition to checking out the resources on Z-Wave.com and ZWaveZone, get involved with the smart home community online and through social media like the Z-Wave Facebook page. There are a lot of hobbyists that love home automation and are willing to help should you run into any issues.

If you had to choose one room of the home to start building out a smart home, which would you choose and why?

The best room to start building your smart home in is the room you use most. I personally started in my living room, which is by far the most used room in my home. I started with smart light switches and fan control, then moved to home theater and mood lighting control. After that, I moved to my kitchen and bedroom and slowly "finished" the rest of my house. I say "finished" because once you have the itch, you're never truly done adding, removing, or modifying your devices. What I love about Z-Wave smart home products is that you only need one hub and one app to control such a wide variety of devices. Home automation should make your life easier, not more complex!

Tags

z-wave zone, how-to, z-wave products, best z-wave devices, Fibaro, Schlage, smart light switches, smart fan control





5 Reasons Why Your AirBnB Should Be Connected

5 Reasons Why Your AirBnB Should Be Connected

Vacation properties can provide a holiday oasis for families and friends while being used. But what happens during the rest of the year? Homes often sit unoccupied for long periods of time and until recently, it was hard to maintain and monitor without hiring someone local or spending money on an expensive security system.

Grow your Nexia System

Grow your Nexia System

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.

Z-Wave Smart Home Monitoring Your Kids

Dawn Of The Smart Home - Vivint




5 ways Z-Wave works with Amazon Echo

5 ways Z-Wave works with Amazon Echo

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?

Z-Wave vs. Wi-Fi vs Bluetooth: A Breakdown

Z-Wave vs. Wi-Fi vs Bluetooth: A Breakdown

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

Nexia Trailer

GE Z-Wave - On/Off Switch




3 Smart Home Projects to Work on This Spring

3 Smart Home Projects to Work on This Spring

Whether it's the inside or outside of your home that could use some fine tuning, we have a smart home project using Z-Wave tech for you. Check out these 3 projects that you can do over the weekend without spending a ton of time or money.

Here's why Dad loves a smart home

Here's why Dad loves a smart home

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

The best smart home hub of 2016

BGR

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.

Smart childproofing: How I created a safer home with smart home tech

BabyCenter.com Blog

When my son was five, I overheard him plotting with the girl next door to sneak out and meet up for a play date—after my husband and I were asleep. That was the day I decided to get a smart home security system.

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

How-to-Geek

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.

4 Smart Home Technologies That Can Reduce Your Electricity Bills

Electronic House

Thankfully, smart home technologies can help with the turning off of lights, as well as other habits that can drive up your energy bills.

What's New

Week 2: Paul's Smart Home Diary

Wareable

For while this diary is going to be all about the latest and greatest smart home tech – an area I consider myself at least mildly authoritative on – getting that tech connected and playing nicely is a different beast entirely.

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.

5 Steps to Better Home Security with Smart Lighting

Electronic House

The five tips shared here are solid lighting control suggestions that can boost the effectiveness a home security system, or even be used on their own for your own peace of mind, whether the emergency is finding a snack without stubbing your toe or scaring away an intruder in the middle of the night.

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

WRAL

"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.