Holy Crap this is going to get expensive

(Morgan Young) #1

So far I just have two on/off GE/Iris switches for my Living Room lights (controlled by my new Harmony Home remote) and porch light (on/off at dusk/dawn) along with a single outdoor GE switch for seasonal decorations. I thought I’d figure up exactly what I would need if I chose to automate the entire house, this won’t be cheap, over $1400! HAHA. I’ve attached a screen shot of my initial walk through. Now, I won’t be doing everything on this list, but still not cheap.

The list also doesn’t include fully automated fan control, just on/off switches on a couple fans. Luckily, when my house was built (1989) they wired separate switches for all of the ceiling fans, so that makes things easier for sure. Additionally, 95% of my lights are CFL, so all of the lights controlled by dimmers will need to be swapped to LED. Not cheap either but those seem to be coming down in price. Lowes has a two pack of LED can lights for $30 so I am thinking about taking the plunge on those first for my kitchen. I’ll need six total so $15 each isn’t terrible, IMO.

Not complaining as this is something that I have always wanted to do, but just thought I’d share what I’m getting myself into. It seems much more cost effective and reliable today compared to what I’ve seen in the past. Wife isn’t too happy, but she’ll get used to it. Her and guests are the reason why I have to use switches on everything rather than smart bulbs so it’s still user friendly for everyone…

Is this how it starts for everyone? LOL



(Patrick Stuart [@pstuart]) #3

Lol, complain about that total? I paid that per room or more a few years ago to install a high end HA product…

Yes it is expensive, but a heck of a lot cheaper and easier then it was just a few years ago.

(Chrisb) #4

I think the important thing it think carefully about what you do or don’t need automated. For example, we’ve got 3 outlets in our master bedroom. I’ve only replaced one with a z-wave outlet. I just don’t have a need for HA on the other two. Other rooms are similar. One, maybe two outlets need to be converted, the rest can stay as is.

Another thing that, in hindsight, I wish I’d done differently. In my kids rooms I replaced a couple of outlets. I wish I had just used appliance modules instead. They like to rearrange their bedrooms occasionally (Especially my daughter) and when this happens lights and radios and other items get moved around as well. It’s be a lot easier to just unplug the module from one outlet and put it in the other rather than changing device names and rules associated with those devices.

So if you’re looking at a room that may see semi-regular rearrangement, definitely look at modules rather than hardwired outlets.

(Mike Maxwell) #5

expensive?, I’ve got that in wall plates and switches alone…
And it’s still way less money than any decent addiction.

But, yes it’s expensive.

(Wallace McClure) #6

A suggestion?

Buy it by the yard, and install and test before going to the next phase.

I started with some appliance modules and a hub. That was cool.

Then I added dimmers and multi-sensors. And started playing with modes and actions.

Next is going to be smart wall sockets, then motion detectors. And starting to work through logics on what systems come on in what situation (and time).

And eventually, this will include locks and external sensors.

Keeps the purchase price down per month and stretches the cost over several months, and I don’t have a bunch of stuff that isn’t being used every day sitting around while I figure out what to do with it.

Wife acceptance Factor (WAF) is very high now, with little/no disruption, and no change to her ability to control things, and a lot of flexibility at the house level in doing things – and the cost has been reasonable per month.

(Christopher Masiello) #7

That’s one of the best advantages over the old fashioned professional installations. They’re pretty much pay for it all now. You can do an initial setup to cover the basics and add one device (switch, plug, module) per month. In a year, you’ll have a pretty nice setup for $35 - $50 per month.

(DLee) #8

What no door locks or motion sensors? Cheapskate… :smile:

(Chellis Dodge) #9

I don’t see any Sirens, door sensors, motion sensors, a nest/thermostat, water leak detectors, smoke/co alarms…once you get started you just can’t stop. I bought the ST hub 3 weeks ago and I’m at 16 devices already and this is just dabbling or “trying it out”…I think I"m going to be a few grand into this just to get the home partially automated.

(Tim Steele) #10

I agree with the “a little at a time” concept. As SmartThings and the people over at Hue will tell you, I place orders regularly for small batches of things. I’m up to 23 Hue bulbs, 3 door locks, five motion sensors, nine door sensors, 10 water sensors, a couple of receptacles, plug in dimmers, and light switches/dimmers (and more already ordered). I’ve bought several Sonos speakers and connected them to the system already. It’s sort of problem. :slight_smile: Now, for the sake of all of us, burn that spreadsheet before our husbands/wives see it!

(Coolcatiger) #11

you made me realize how much I have spent after getting smartthings. I agree - get few at a time like mortgage payment :wink:

(Elijah) #12

I had a draft list at one time, now I am of the crowed that orders a little here, a little there… I tend to follow the pulse of the wife’s input. “see honey the patio light comes on when you get near home. ok, but can the floods do it too” [runs off to buy more GE Links]

(Alex) #13

That’s my strategy exactly! Now that the daylight will be limited to like 3 hours per day (up north here), I’m just waiting for the Mrs to ask for more connected switches.

(Eric V) #14

One other suggestion. Watch craigslist. You’ll have online companies clearing out product, people moving out of apartments, guys where the wife told them to sell it all after one too many times getting locked out of the house.

I picked up 5 ge/jasco dimmer switches for $90, 3 still in their blister packs.

(Elijah) #15

I 2nd the Craigslist recommendation… I picked up a Schalge Century for &100.00 in perfect condition

(Dawn Fairbro) #16

Not only can it get expensive but it is an addiction also. I’ve had to limit my purchases to $100 per month. It took me two months to get my Sonos play one. I have enough items on my “want list” to keep me busy until 2024 :hushed:

(Chrisb) #17

Christmas is coming! :smile: