The term â€œsmart homeâ€ refers to the concept of using home controls and automation.Â Your house can be as smart as you want it to be. The options are limitless.Â Home automation does not start with gadgetry, it actually starts with aesthetics and appearance. We are all too familiar with the ugly look of the standard gang switches.Â It is not uncommon to see a gang of 6, 8 or more switches installed in one location â€“ it is not a pretty sight. Home automation can replace all that with a compact set of buttons that gets rid of all that clutter and actually adds to the â€œclean lookâ€ of the house.Â When looking for home automation, concentrate on features that appeal to your life style, since after-all, you want home automation to add comfort to your life and not burden it with features you are not going to use or that will be difficult to figure out and operate.Â The most popular features people look for are lighting and climate control.Â The main benefits of lighting control are:
Climate control allows you to remotely control the heating, cooling and ventilation systems via a laptop or an IPhone.Â Climate control is also an energy saving feature since it allows you to use energy saving temperature set points while you are away and readjusting them â€œfrom Grand Centralâ€ while on your way home.Â Other features that are more of a personal preference are: audio and video controls, security system control, irrigation control, appliances control etc.Â When selecting an automation system for a house, look for a reputable manufacturer that offers both: wired components as well as radio controlled units that will allow easier future expansion of the system.
Important note:Â Since the line voltage wiring mayÂ affect theÂ house automation system, it is highly recommended to hire an electrical contractor who is also an expert in AVÂ wiring.
My project, Ridge Haven, is equipped with the Vantage home automation system with lighting and climate controls.Â More on Ridge Haven can be viewed at: 1385smithridgerd-indetail.com.Â I have used MARS Electric LLC of Danbury CT forÂ both:Â electrical and Vantage systems.
More on the Vantage system for luxury homes can be viewed at:Â vantagecontrols.com