My older mom is terrible about arming the home alarm at night or when she leaves the house to do errands.
I just built her a house and I installed wired magnetic reed switches for each window (using two-conductor alarm wire). The reed switch wires from all the windows were run to a media/server room. I have a total of eighteen windows with reed switches. I would be happy with a minimum of six alarm zones for the house.
My mom is good about locking the door when she leaves the house so I was hoping to find a solution that enables the home alarm system when she locks the smart deadbolt… and disarms when she unlocks the smart deadbolt.
These are all the related IOT devices that I currently have in the home:
48-port Cisco POE switch
Google nest hub
Ring elite POE doorbell
In anticipation of making progress on this project, I have already ordered the following items:
I recently ordered a SmartThings Hub v3 (should be receiving any day now)
I also recently ordered a smart deadbolt: Kwikset 916-CNT-ZW (should be receiving any day now)
**At the moment I am thinking that my solution will require the Konnected alarm panel (or something similar)
I am hoping to get some advice from y’all (yes I’m from Texas) with how to proceed. I am not married to any of the IOT devices above. If your solutions require different components, I’m all ears.
Studied Electronics and IT in college. I’m more of a hardware guy and I don’t have a heavy interest in coding (but I will if I have to).
I live an hour away from her and I travel quite a bit for work. I would like a little added piece of mind knowing that she has added protection @her place.
I think you could accomplish a BASIC approach to using your smart lock to arm/disarm her system with webcore. I think it would be quite easy. And you could also include redundancy checks for you to know when those events happen.
Phones for presence sensors.
From there it is just the automations in Smartthings.
As for the door lock. I have one Automation that disarms the house if the door is unlocked.
Locking could also arm the system but I’m not sure how you could determine the difference between Armed/Away and Armed/Stay.
Side note- Phones with a Samsung account and the Smartthings app can be used as the presence sensor. However my family uses life360. This required me to use Webcore to make my away and stay determinations.
Understood, I will get webCoRE setup when I receive my hub. So I take it that I’m gonna have to get a bit creative with setting trigger parameters that determine whether the alarm should enable as “HOME” or “AWAY” state. I hope I don’t run into any issues with her using her iPhone X.
It is possible with smartthings to set up what you described, but it’s very important that you understand that it is not a UL listed security system and in particular it lacks several features that UL listed security systems do have which might cause trouble for your mother.
For these reasons, many people, myself included, use smartthings for convenience use cases in home automation, but use a different system for security monitoring, such as ring or abode. So I just want to be sure that you know what you are getting before you spend a lot of time and money on it.
Arming requires the cloud. First, smartthings remains primarily a cloud-based system. In a security context, this has two different impacts. You can only arm or disarm the system if the power is working, the Internet is working and the smartthings cloud is available. That applies specifically to the use case you asked about, having the system disarm when the door unlocks. That will only happen if the smartthings cloud is available.
A UL listed security system, In contrast, will have at least an eight hour battery back up, will have the ability to send notifications via cellular, and will have the ability to arm and disarm from a local button or keypad press. Smartthings has none of these.
Updates cannot be deferred. The other issue is that we as customers are not allowed to defer or delay updates, and these update to take the hub off-line. Which takes your security system off-line. Historically, these updates have happened about once a month. They try to give us a couple of days notice, but they don’t always. So pretty much any time, the system could stop working. It might be for only a few minutes, but it might be for a couple of hours.
The phone app will not work unless your Internet is working. Also, it’s important to understand that the phone app will not work at all If The smartthings cloud is not available. They didn’t have to design it that way, but they did. This in itself isn’t that unusual, quite a few security systems have apps that don’t work if the Internet is out, but the UL listed ones will still have ways to interact with the system via the local keypad. SmartThings does not.
there’s no officially supported keypad. Oh, and we should also mention that there is no officially supported keypad for the smartthings system. You can get a ring keypad and pay for a third-party custom integration and use that, but while this device is local if used with ring security, it remains cloud-based if used with smartthings.
many people find that presence detection is unreliable with smartthings and its new app. You can find lots of discussion of this in the forum.
Smartthings itself, whether used as a security system or not, has pretty frequent glitches. Some of them are posted to the official status page, but not all. These are errors of the “everything worked on Monday, I haven’t changed everything, but now it’s Tuesday and something stopped working“ variety. You can look at the official status page to see some of the recent major outages.
using the official features, smartthings only has one security zone. That’s also not uncommon in security systems in this price range, but again it’s just something you should be aware of. You can probably work around it with custom code but that will be a lot more work and potentially more fragile.
So what does all of that mean from a practical standpoint?
Imagine that there has been a power outage in your home and your mother arrives home. The security system was armed while she was away. Because there is no way to change the mode locally, as she enters, the security system will alert if you had it set up to do so locally. More than one person has posted to the forum about a siren that just kept going off and ultimately the only thing they could do was take the batteries out of it to get it to stop.
It also means that if your mother is home and the Internet goes out, she will have no way of using the system to trigger a panic button or an alert or even to arm the security system if it was disarmed. Also, the phone app won’t work.
It may be that you still think the system will be a good match to your needs, I just wanted to make sure that you understood this going in. Smartthings is a very flexible, versatile, powerful system and a lot of people are attracted to it because of the fact that it can work with so many different brands of devices. But it is not a particularly stable system and it is only designed to work when the Internet is functioning, which is not what most people think of when they think of security systems.
If you do want to continue with smartthings, you should look into a third-party product, Konnected. It is specifically designed to let you bring in sensors of the type that you describe to your smartthings system. It doesn’t remove the cloud requirement, though. It just let you bring in those other devices.
You may already know all these issues and have made the decision that smartthings is a good fit, but just in case I wanted to bring them up now.
It depends what you mean by “in parallel“. You can use Alexa routines for some integration between SmartThings and any system which works with Alexa, including Ring Security, but it can be glitchy on the smartthings side and it’s only partial integration. So it comes down to the details.
The one thing you will not be able to do is use sensors controlled by smartthings to trigger alarms in your security system. Most security systems locked down pretty tight in terms of what devices can trigger an alarm in order to prevent false alarms. But you should be able to use smartthings devices to arm and disarm the security system using the Alexa routine as an intermediary.
And you would still be able to use the local device from the security system, typically either a keypad or a handheld key fob, to arm and disarm it if for whatever reason smartthings wasn’t working.
BTW, ring/Alexa routines don’t support the same level of complexity Smartthings does, but it does do the basic stuff well. And if you had ring security, you could add a Z wave lock to it and then you could have that lock locking or unlocking arm or disarm the ring security system through a Alexa routine.
But of course that doesn’t bring in your wired sensors.
Excellent. I knew they were working on that feature last year, I just didn’t know it had been released yet. I would check that with them to be sure, but in the pre-announcements they indicated that that would be local, which would be great.
Also the retrofit looks great for your purposes. both Ring and Alexa have been adding new features regularly, it’s hard to keep up.
Also, you probably already found this information, but ring is one of those where you lose a lot of the app’s functionality if the Internet has gone out. But you can still arm and disarm locally from the panel. And as long as you have the paid plan, it will send notifications using the cellular module.