You only need lights when it is dark and there somebody in the room to use it. Both conditions are easy to automate. With the price of motion sensors and smart lights, there are no reasons we need to use the switches anymore.
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We believe that light automation is one of the first things you need to do for your house and below is the guide on how to do that.
How Does It Work?
- There are two ways you can smarten your lights.
- Install a smart switch. The benefit of this is that you will save on the bulb costs and nobody will accidentally switch off the dumb lights. Cons is that you cannot control the color/brightness and so on. You also need a neutral line in the box with your switch.
- Install a smart bulb. The cons are that it is usually more expensive and somebody can switch off the smart lights using a dumb switch.
- Another important element is the motion sensor.
- Make sure that you install it in the right spot to cover the whole of the room and also avoid false triggers
- Make sure that your motion sensor will also have a luminance sensor. It will allow you to also detect when it is dark enough in the room to switch on the lights. You can rely on time, but the luminance sensor is a much more reliable approach.
What Do You Need?
Device Our Recommendation Price
IR hubA dedicated bridge
that emulates your
$10 - $30
RF hubRF bridge that emulates your Remote
$20 - $30
Shut off valveA valve that will close and open water supply
- Dome Home Automation Water Shut-Off Valve - for Pipes up to 1 1/2", White (DMWV1) ($99.99) is the most affordable option. Easy to install (you do not need a plumber) and operate. Requires Smart Hub
- leakSMART Water Leak Detection Kit ($365.72) 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 SensorReports if a door or window is open or closed
$20 - $30
Motion SensorDetects any motion. Ideally combined with luminance sensor.
A relatively simple device, with the price mainly dependent on the protocol you are using:
- Z-wave Motion Sensor: Our favouritez-wave sensor is Dome Motion and Light Sensor ($34.97) for a good battery life, responsiveness and price. It also has luminance sensor built in. For a multisensor we recommend Zoos 4 in 1 multisensor ($33.95) or Aeon 6 in 1 ($59.99).
- Zigbee Motion Sensor: SmartThings sensor ($24.94) is the best for its price and stability.
$25 - $60
Water leak detectorA sensor that will trigger the shut-off valve to work
- Samsung Leak Detector ($19.95) 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 ($54.99) 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
OutletAllows you to remotely switch on and off. Can be retrofitted to any existing devices.
- Wifi outlet: Kasa Smart WiFi Plug (price for 2 - $34.99) is the best for price and local connectivity.
- Zigbee outlet: Sylvania Smart Plug ($18.54) is also a good option for ZigBee outlet
- Z-wave outlet: GE Enbrighten Z-Wave Plus Smart Plug ($34.99) is good practical device that do not take a lot of space and work perfectly
$20 - $35
Smart Colour Bulb
A a colour bulb you can remotely control
- Wifi: Kasa Smart Light Bulb, Multicolor ($35.00) is best wifi colour LED bulb. We recommend TP-link devices for a great value, easy integration with almost any smart hubs and excellent quality.
- Zigbee: Sengled E11-N1EA Smart LED Multicolor Bulb (from $24.99) is the most practical RGB smart bulb around
$24 - $35
White BulbPractical bulb that would work for majority of use cases
$10 - $20
Switch USSwitch to turn on and off lights. Require neutral wire in the box.
- Zigbee: HOUSEYAS ZigBee Smart Light Switch ($27.99) is a great device. It does not require neutral wire so will be really easy to install.
- Z-wave: Honeywell Z-Wave Plus On/Off Switch ($36.99) is a switch that easy to install and operate. Works with all the major hubs and looks great.
- Z-wave Dimmer: GE Enbrighten Z-Wave Plus Smart Dimmer Switch ($43.97) in addition to being a great dimmer can also act as extender.
- Wifi: Wemo Light Switch ($37.54) is really good if you do not have Z-wave of ZigBee and not planning to buy.
$30 - $45
How to Set 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.