This happens to the best of us – we forget to take out wet laundry from the washer. It lays there all wet. Ew!

One of the reasons is that our washing machines are usually away in the washroom, basement or even garage. It is only UK they might be installed in the kitchen. Even so very often we do not hear the buzzer and might forget to take out wet laundry.

This routine is part of the Automation Bank, a community-driven list of over 50 practical automation ideas for your smart home. Read more about Automation Bank or search ideas by room, by device or by use case. Also, have a look at best home automation ideas as voted by our users.

This simple automation routine will remind you that is it time to take out the laundry.

How Does It Work?

  • Trigger: To get notified there are few options, for the dryer a power consumption sensor is working the best. Just use a smart plug that can measure the used power consumption. When it’s below 10 watts for 5 minutes the dryer is finished. Try different thresholds as some modern washing machines are very energy efficient and it can be difficult to tell when it’s done.
  • Another option would be to use a vibration sensor – notify when there was a vibration but it stopped for the last 10 mins.
  • Conditions: If your hub support statuses, this is the routine to use them. Statuses will help you to only notify you or your family members if you are at home or just came into your house.
  • Acton: We always suggest you using multiple notification channels. The best ones are:
    • Mobile notifications
    • Smart Color Bulb in a visible area

ADVANCED MODE

  • Use motion sensor attached to the washing machine door to disable the notification in case somebody already opened the door

What Do You Need?

DeviceOur RecommendationPrice

IR hub

A dedicated bridge
that emulates your
IR remote
$10 - $30

Comms Sticks

Use Z-wave and Zigbee with your smart hub
$40 - $50

Home Assistant Server

Use Z-wave and Zigbee with your smart hub
  • If you are new to Home Assistant, start with Raspberry Pi 3 B+ ($84.99). It will cover your basic needs and easily expand. 
  • Intel NUC NUC8i3BEK, i3 (8GB Ram + 128GB SSD) (from $43.99) once you understand how cool Home Assistant is, go for NUC. There are dedicated images for NUC which makes it great to use and simple to set up. 
$80 - $400

RF hub

RF bridge that emulates your Remote

 

  • Sonoff RF Bridge ($23.99) is our favourite RF bridge. The first thing you need to do is to flash it with Tasmota. This will allow you to connect to your bridge but also just control the bridge better.
$20 - $30

Shut off valve

A valve that will close and open water supply
  • leakSMART Water Leak Detection Kit ($361.25) is a more expensive option. It has all you need to set you up shut off valve. There are some negative comments on the hub but it works well in general.
  • Grohe 22503LN0 (from $14.00) is even more expensive. For the additional price, you have flow sensors capable to detect the pipe bursts without the sensors and better overall build quality. At the same, it has fewer options for integrating with your smart hub.
$99 - $400

Door/Window Sensor

Reports if a door or window is open or closed
  • Zigbee:  SmartThings Multipurpose Sensor ($19.28) is the best sensor by Samsung. Reliable, good battery life and looks amazing
  • Z-wave:  Z-Wave Door & Window Sensor ($29.00) is the sensor we recommend by Ecolink. It is easy to install, has up to 3 years of battery life and great customer feedback
$20 - $30

Motion Sensor 

Detects any motion. Ideally combined with luminance sensor.
A relatively simple device, with the price mainly dependent on the protocol you are using:
  • Zigbee Motion Sensor: SmartThings sensor ($19.99) is the best for its price and stability.
$25 - $60

Multisensor 

Measure several environmental factors such as temperature, humidity, or light levels
This is a more complicated device than a motion sensor and can be used where multiple environmental factors need to be detected:
  • Z-wave: Our favourite z-wave sensor is Aeon 6 in 1 ($59.99) for its reliability and flexibility in use. It detects motion, humidity, temperature, light lux, UV, vibration sensor and has 2-year battery life
  • Zigbee: Samsung SmartThings Multipurpose Sensor ($19.28) give you open/close, vibration, orientation, angle (tilt), and temperature measures for multipurpose functionality
    $20 - $60

    Water leak detector

    A sensor that will trigger the shut-off valve to work
    • Samsung Leak Detector ($19.04) is the most affordable and simple solution. At this price, you should cover all the areas in your house. Requires A Smart Hub
    • FIBARO Flood Sensor ($59.99) is a very good Z-wave leak detector. It has great battery life, easy to pair and very accurate at alarms. Requires A Smart Hub
    $20 - $55

    Outlet 

    Allows you to remotely switch on and off. Can be retrofitted to any existing devices. 
    • Wifi outlet: Kasa Smart WiFi Plug (price for 2 - $33.97) is the best for price and local connectivity.
    $20 - $35

    Plug with Energy Monitoring

    Reports the power consumption
      $23 - $32

      Smart Color Bulb

      A colour bulb you can remotely control 

      $24 - $35

      White Bulb

      Practical bulb that would work for majority of use cases
      $10 - $20

      Switch US

      Switch to turn on and off lights. Require neutral wire in the box.
      $30 - $45

      Voice assistant:

      AI driven device that can respond to voice commands

      There is no right answer which Voice Assistant to choose, but we have the following recommendations:

      • The most comprehensive: Amazon Alexa ($99.99) has a lot to offer. Zigbee radio means potentially one hub less (although we still recommend getting a dedicated hub). It also has the biggest ecosystem to tap into (including Ring, Phillips Hue, TP-link)
      • The most intelligent: Google Home is using the brains behind the biggest search engine in the world to deliver the best answers for your questions. It is definitely more capable compared to Alexa
      $100

      Smart Blinds

      Motorised shades that automatically open and close the blinds
      Read more: Best Motorized Blinds
      $40 - $279

      Smart Buttons

      A convenient way to trigger routines and specific actions
      $8 - $50

      Irrigation System

      Make sure your plants are always watered
      $180 - $220

      Outdoor Lights

      Lightning for your garden protected from water
      $49 - $70

      Smart TRV

      Thermo Regulator Valve that can be controlled remotely
      $60 - $200

      Outdoor Outlets

      Protected plugs for outdoors
      $40

      Outdoor Cameras

      Cameras that would work well outdoors
      • Best Overall Outdoor Camera: Amcrest UltraHD 4MP Outdoor POE Camera ($74.99) is a great quality outdoor camera. It has 4k resolution making it perfect for large outdoor areas. It is ONVIF protocol compliant making it easy to connect to almost any NVR
      More: Detailed Review of 4 Best Outdoor Cameras
      $70

      Outdoor Sensors

      Protected sensors for your garden
      HomeSeer HS-FLS100+ Z-Wave Plus Outdoor Floodlight Sensor ($42.95) is a AC powered motion and lightning sensor. It would work with your smart home but also control floodlights.$40

      Moisture Sensor

      Reports the level of humidity
      $30

      Security Alarm System

      System to alarm you of any unauthorized entry to your house
      $89 - $300

      Robot Vacuum

      Little helper to clean your house
      • Best Overall: iRobot Roomba 690 (from $301.06) for great value, good quality and connectivity to all major smart hubs
      $300

      How To Set It Up?

      Section below will have step by step instructions how to set this automation routine in the most popular smart hubs like SmartThings, Home Assistant, HomeSeer and Hubitat

      Please leave comments below if you have any questions, or interested in the instruction for a specific system. This will help us to better focus our effort.