What do you think of when you hear about home automation? For some people it is a scary proposition, the thought of your house being able to function without you? For others it is a welcome step in the direction of evolution and progress, of being freed up from the monotonous chores that dwelling in a residence requires. And for others they simply have no idea what home automation entails. Whichever side of the fence you sit, here is the ten most asked questions when it comes to automating your home:
1. What Is Home Automation
Home automation allows you to control your home electronics and electrical system with the touch of a button. Through computers, smartphones, or control panels, we can set up a system to allow you to control multiple home features remotely. A fully integrated system will transform your house into what is known as a smart home.
2. How Does Home Automation Work?
Home Automation works by linking up multiple systems across your home, from electrical appliances, heating and cooling, security, and irrigation systems to a remotely controllable network which you will have access to via your smartphone, or a similar device.
3. What Systems Can Be Integrated In A Smart Home?
With today’s technology there are really no boundaries to what you can have automated in your home but here are some of the more common features that we come across in our line of work:
- Both indoor and outdoor. The indoor lighting can be mainly used as a security purpose if you are traveling but want to show the illusion that somebody is home.
Heating & Air Conditioning
- Due to the changes in seasons this system comes in handy for both heating and cooling your home without you being there. Dreading coming back to an icebox of a home after a long day in work? Just the tap of a button 20 minutes before your arrival and it will be nice and cozy before you get there. Looking forward to that refreshing blast of the A/C when coming home from your jog in that sweltering summer heat? Turn it on right before the last stretch and let that cool breeze hit you immediately upon entry.
- Does the question “did I forget to water the plants?” cause you severe anxiety? No fret, just whip out the smartphone and you can allow your anxiety to wash away knowing those Coreopsis (Florida’s state flower) are thriving!
Audio System/Surround Sound
- There are multiple companies that offer control programmed systems for your interior and exterior audio needs. What is just as important to consider as the actual system you purchase, is whom you hire to install it (providing said company doesn’t do it themselves). We guarantee the highest quality in our work. These audio systems can be controlled remotely, and can be set to play in different zones of the house, depending on what you’re looking to achieve. Throwing a rave party out the backyard but simultaneously hosting an elegant dinner in the dining hall? While we wouldn’t recommend it, it’s possible with the right integrated audio system.
Automated Window Shades
- A lot of people might think why would I need this? But there are a few points to consider. Safety – the cords on blinds can be a choking hazard for children and pets. It also offers security as along with indoor lighting, it may ward off potential burglars if they see blinds changing. Energy Efficient – It is counterintuitive to run A/C while having the sun streaming in, why not combine the systems for efficiency, your wallet will thank you when the energy bill comes in.
- It is pretty self explanatory, but switching on any type of security system while you’re away from home will give you peace of mind. We have all rushed out the door while forgetting to switch it on, either doubling back or being anxious until your return that night.
4. What Is A Smart Kitchen?
Above are the most common smart systems in homes that we have seen over the last few years, but a new wave of technology is upon us. The kitchen is no stranger to upgrades, but there have been leaps and bounds made recently. Here are a few examples of such devices:
- Cookers that can be controlled through your smartphones. Never again will you have to pause a movie just to get up and change the temperature, or switch off the oven.
- Examples such as Slow Roast Pots, Pressure Cookers, and Crock-Pots can now be programmed remotely through Bluetooth. Similar advantages to the above smart cookers.
- What a world we live in. There are many of us out there that don’t fully wake up until that initial caffeine rush hits. So what better way to increase your productivity levels than have the coffee brew while you’re still in bed?
- A control panel that keeps stock of what is there and what needs to be refilled. This does take a bit of bookkeeping on your part, but great once you get in the habit of it.
5. What Are The Benefits Of Home Automation Systems?
As mentioned above, there are many benefits to having a smart home in today’s hectic world.
- Not having to be physically present in your home in order to achieve a task even if it is as simple as lowering the blinds can take the weight off of your shoulders.
- Those icy winter mornings when you are struggling to get out of bed because you know the depths of chill await downstairs in your kitchen are soothed knowing you can turn on the heating and avoid the cold.
Peace of mind
- You can enjoy those breaks away with your loved ones knowing that a smart home offers security at the touch of a button.
6. How Much Does Home Automation Cost?
As with all systems it will depend on how many features you want integrated. Smart homes are not overly expensive, but it is best practice to go with a fully licensed professional who has experience in installing them. We offer competitive rates and guarantee top quality work.
7. Can A Smart Home Save Me Money?
The short answer is yes. The initial set up will of course cost more than just having nothing done, but much like installing solar panels, the long-term benefits will save you money. The simple reason is efficiency! You see home automation systems eliminate human error. Are you somebody that forgets to turn off the heat, lights, A/C, or oven? By having a fully integrated system that is set up to switch off at the optimum moment, you never have to worry about the money you are spending on this wasted energy.
8. How Does It Feel To Live In A Smart Home?
Above all else it is the convenience that home automation provides that makes people wonder how they ever lived without it. The world we live in is a hectic place; allow these systems to alleviate some of the pressure of those everyday tasks. Once we have completed set up, and the initial orientation period is over, especially with the more elderly of our clients, we have not been asked back to revert to the old manual system. If you’ve thought about integrating these smart systems into your home, why not give us a call on (727) 771-9403.
9. Is Home Automation Needed These Days?
If you are a person that enjoys doing the little things in life, are never really rushed, or super organized, than no, living in a smart home would not be necessary for you. Like all of life’s luxuries, very few are actually needed, but it doesn’t stop us from enjoying them all the same.
10. How Will Home Automation Affect Our Society In The Future?
The most skeptical of people out there can view the integration of advanced technology in our homes as the beginning of the end for humans, and one step closer to artificial intelligence taking over! But the truth is this is just another step in us evolving and becoming more efficient in our way of life. It can alleviate stress and allow you to spend time doing the things you love. Home automation can also have a positive impact on the environment, with less energy being wasted, and freeing up your time to achieve what you want to.
Located in Clearwater, Florida, East-West Electric has over 40 years combined experience with providing commercial, residential and industrial electrical needs. Our services are vast and you can ensure a Clearwater electrician from our team has the skills and resources to make any project come to reality. If you’re considering a home automation system why not give us a call at (727) 771-9403 to learn more. You can also find our contact information here.