I’ve been floating around this forum on topic discussions for a while now as I’ve been researching the viability of getting a little into home automation and I think SmartThings might be a winner for me. Just a little about me, I do program a little, but I don’t consider myself a pro. I do some websites on the side, and I know a little C#. That said, before I make the jump, I would like a little help on evaluating my game plan as well as answer one or two questions.
So what I did first was start out writing what I want my rooms (or zones I guess you could call it?) to do. I only plan to do a few rooms first and then branch off from there as I get better:
Between the hours of 5:00am - 12:00pm, if my room lights are on, I want them to turn off automatically. The exception is only Friday when I want them on all night just in case I’m working. In both cases, should the morning sun come, shut the lights off automatically.
By 7:40pm (6:40pm savings), I want the lights to come on in my room automatically.
If the sunlight detector detects atmospheric light below a specific threshold, then I want the lights to turn on either to a specific level in relation to the amount of light available, or fully on (since my lights are dimmable LEDs).
Smartthings v2.0 Hub
Cree Connected 60W Soft White (2700K) x2: $28.00
Aeon Labs Aeotec Z-Wave Gen5 Multi-Sensor: $49.00
The loft is a little tricky as I’m not entirely sure how to handle it. There are three flood lights, and one fan light. Two of the flood lights are controlled by two switches (non independent). This means that if one switch is set to the off position and the lights are already on, then the other switch’s on position becomes the off position for the lights (stupid -_-). The third light is controlled by its own switch closer to the stairs.
What I want to do is set those floods to Cree LED 2700 700Lm Flood lights which do not have Z-Wave, and add a Z-Wave dimmer to my hall connecting to the loft which has a switch that controls light one and two (the first switch mentioned earlier). There will then be another Z-Wave dimmer to separately control light three. I have not decided how to handle the fan light, but it will most likely have a Z-Wave dim on it as well.
One big problem I see (I think) is determining the state of the switch on light one and two since there would be a fader in the hall, and an analogue on/off switch on the other side. Depending on the position of the analogue switch, this could reverse the state of the dimmer (possibly giving it an inaccurate reading where on is now off) which would be undesirable.
For that problem, not sure if the only solution would be to put yet another dimmer on the same switch, and have the hub reset both at the same time. Considering the second switch is used by another room to light a path to the bathroom, I can’t simply get rid of it.
GE Soft White 700L 2 Pack Flood Lights: $17.97
GE Z-Wave Lighting Control Dimmer Switch: $40.00
Those are my two biggest areas of concern as some of the other rooms mirror a similar scenario (with the hardest being the two switches one light scenario). Nothing fancy just yet. Later on, I might add some door sensors here or there and hopefully some programming to use my phone as a presence sensor to light a path to my room on late nights.
Lastly, I want to ask what is the general difference between professional home automation and consumer grade home automation? More motors (lol)? Also, I’ve run into OpenHAB while on my research. I’ve been hearing that it can get pretty dicey on the setup especially for new comers. I’ve worked a tiny bit with a Linux platform, but still have some to learn. I’d figure that worst comes to worse (if at all), I’ll scale my needs or my experience to that if necessary.
Thanks all for the help!