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





Make Your Smart Home Pet Friendly

Make Your Smart Home Pet Friendly

Anyone who's ever lived with a pet knows that they're creatures of habit. And really, smart home technology is really just way of teaching your own house a few good habits of its own.

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

GE Z-Wave Plug-in Outdoor Smart Switch

Piece of Cake - AT&T Digital Life




Fighting Fires with Z-Wave

Fighting Fires with Z-Wave

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.

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

IFA 2015 LG - Smart Home

Linear - Z-Wave Wall Mount Switch




Lower your homeowner's insurance with an investment in Z-Wave smart home gear

Lower your homeowner's insurance with an investment in Z-Wave smart home gear

You might already know ways that a Z-Wave smart home system can save you money: smart thermostats that only heat and cool your home when it needs it; smart dimmers that reduce the energy consumption of your lights

Smart Home Technology That Emphasizes The Home

Smart Home Technology That Emphasizes The Home

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.

Get Smart With Stacey: How Do I Set Up Automatic Blinds?

PC Mag

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.

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.

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.

Three of the Best Uses for Smart Home Technology

House O Matic

Smart home technology is still shiny and new, and people are adapting to it more and more every day.

What's New

Become an Awesome Neighbor with Smart Home Technology

House-o-Matic

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.

Three Smart Security Features for Your Front Porch

Alarm.com

The traditional American front porch isn't just a timeless scene. It's also a functional part of your home, where safety, security and convenience are paramount. A few subtle 21st century additions can really enhance your porch, making it an even more enjoyable area to use.

6 Back to School Basics for your Smart Home

ElectronicHouse

By adding a few pieces of technology to your home, you can ensure that your children, your house, and your belongings are safe, everyone gets out the door on time, and that after-school chores are handled promptly.

Top 10 gadgets for your smart home: Bediator, dish cleaner, robotic vacuum cleaner, wireless sensor, others

International Business Times

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.