As I described before I am working on a little project to use some Lumia 640s in the house to control the home automation. Besides figuring out how to configure and roll out the devices, and figuring out how exactly I am going to put them in the walls, I also have a laundry list of items I need to figure out for the app on the device. Instead of waiting before everything is done I thought it might be useful to take you along the ride.
The other day I was chatting with Morten Nielsen on twitter about some ideas for home automation. I want to be able to control lights, temperature etc in some rooms in my home. Ideally that would be done with some kind of easy to use touch screen device. The Raspberry Pi came to mind. There are some screens you can attach to it. It’s low power and pretty easy to put inside the drywall and make the screen look nice on top of that.
Using SmartThings lets you automate most of the stuff in your house. Leaving the house automatically turns of all the lights and heating, but only when all of us leave the house. When one of us returns in the house, the lights go back on and the heating is on as well. The last few weeks my mom was visiting and when both me and my wife left the house she got stuck in the dark because both presence sensors connected to our keys were gone and the rule in SmartThings is when everybody leaves the house switch everything off.
This was bothering me for some time. In the hallway we have a wardrobe closet but that part of the hallway is kind of dark. I was already planning to change the dimmers (2 way) for z-wave ones, but I want to have something smart here as well. Whenever I open the closet I want to lights to go to 100% but when I close the closet they should return to the original value (either it off, or dimmed etc).
I tried to add another z-wave switch to my SmartThings network. I bought a on/off switch at Lowes (all the ‘works with Iris’ stuff you can use in your z-wave network), this is just a GE 1-way on/off z-wave switch, to connect to my outdoor lights so I can switch them on/off automatically with sunset/sunrise. When I connected it to the 2 black wires which were used to the existing switch the lights didn’t come on.