Help Home automation

Moriath

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anyone done any of this stuff. Heating lighting security etc.

If so got a system that you like? I'm just browsing around and there's so much different kit.
 

Deebs

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I have, use Z-Wave, basically a Razberry daughter card connected to a Raspberry PI running Domoticz, have my lights plus other sensors on the system. For my heating I have Hive installed, love it. If I am running late etc I can turn the heating off to save money.
 

Hawkwind

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I purchased a Hive Water/Heating thing from Maplin. It was installed by British Gas and was included in the price. For Lights and Sockets I played around with a couple of switches from Edimax. Belkin do similar WeMo sockets but I've bad experience with some of their gear so tend to stay away these days.
 

smurkin

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Nest here for the thermostat and smoke alarms. You need a degree to understand all of the smartness :|

Nest thermostat has motion heat/smoke and humidity sensors so it knows when you are out and tones down the heat. It somehow senses the weather and lets you know if your usage is over due to bad weather (or just someone turnng it up). It also learns from the heating output curve and has a preheating mode so that it gets into the right temp at the right time. Its programmable using the sensor unit and iPad.

The thermostat is networked to the smoke alarms which have heat, motion, CO, humidity and sensors. Good thing about the smoke sensors is that if one goes off, they all do (I have a big house) and it will push notify your to iDevice, or even give you a call if you are out to say there is smoke.
 

PLightstar

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I do it for a living on a commercial scale, still trying to work out a cheap way for me to do it at home. Android or Pi/Audrino seem to be the cheapest/easiest way for a home installation. There's some really good books on Amazon they take you through a lot of it. Some of the big players like Trend/Honeywell and Siemens will be coming to the home market eventually, but only still in the rumour phase.
 

Hawkwind

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Seen the Nest stuff in the States, looks good and appears to be popular, sold in stores like Best Buy.
 

MYstIC G

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Nest here for the thermostat and smoke alarms. You need a degree to understand all of the smartness :|

Nest thermostat has motion heat/smoke and humidity sensors so it knows when you are out and tones down the heat. It somehow senses the weather and lets you know if your usage is over due to bad weather (or just someone turnng it up). It also learns from the heating output curve and has a preheating mode so that it gets into the right temp at the right time. Its programmable using the sensor unit and iPad.

The thermostat is networked to the smoke alarms which have heat, motion, CO, humidity and sensors. Good thing about the smoke sensors is that if one goes off, they all do (I have a big house) and it will push notify your to iDevice, or even give you a call if you are out to say there is smoke.
Do you pay anything for the ongoing useage of the Nest? I've not quite got my head around that part yet and like all of these "connected" things it sounds great but my concern is always what happens when someone at the other end flips off the switch or decides "your thermostat is no longer supported". Have you had any downsides thus far?
 

Moriath

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I have, use Z-Wave, basically a Razberry daughter card connected to a Raspberry PI running Domoticz, have my lights plus other sensors on the system. For my heating I have Hive installed, love it. If I am running late etc I can turn the heating off to save money.
Do the sensors run off batteries? Or do you have to mains them? If batteries how long do they last?
 

smurkin

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@Mystic - no, there is no subscription (they aren't cheap, mind). It does not need to be attached the internet to work, but I imagine it gets its weather updates from the server and I imagine that if google turned the service off, the iPad app might not work. It also takes software updates from the internet. Same for the smoke alarms although they have their own internal private WAN which connects them.

I moved into a very big house with no thermostats and which is oil fired CH - so my bills are massive. I am hoping for a reduction in heating costs that will pay for the Nests. There was a report issued last week that suggests in the US the average saving on Heating with Nest is about 10% (and higher than 10% for those with Aircon).

Nest wont control the water, btw.
 

Tilda

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I just want to do a huge big-up for Tado.

Its like Nest and Hive except better.
Let me explain why.
My partner and I both work in hospitals. Some days we're home late, some nights were out at work. Our schedules don't fit nicely into the Nests "I can learn" it box, because we just didn't think it would. How is it to know that my wife works 1/3 weekends but that 2/3 I'll be home. The Nest sounds like it works well for people who are home in the evenings and out 9-5.

Tado is SMART though, you fit the thermostat and install the phone app.
Then you set the temperature you want the house at when you're home.

If you go out, it geo-senses, so turns the heating off. And then, because its learned how long it takes to warm up your house, it turns it back on when you start moving towards home, at an appropriate time. So that when you get home, your house is warm.
So if your schedule changes, no worries, Tado has got it sorted for you when you get home.

It also does your hot water (something Nest doesn't do).
What I love is that its smart, unlike the Hive I dont HAVE to think "Oh I'm going home, better turn the heating on", I just go home an Tado has already turned the heating on for me. If I didn't want to look at the fancy graphs I don't need to. It just works without further messing.

For even more money saving, you can adjust the "curve" - ie. If I have it on the "Comfort" setting, it will make sure that the house is exactly the temperature we want by the time we get home. If I have it on the "eco" setting, it delays it slightly, so the house is still coming up to temperature by the time I get home. This is perfect for me because I cycle home, so I get home and the house doesn't feel like an oven, but as I cool down the temperature comes up.

Tado links with the internet so I can check the temperature at home while I'm out, change settings, turn things off or on if I wanted to (not that I need to). It also gets the local weather forecast. If its cold it knows the house might need a bit more heating and so will make sure to maintain the temperature. Similarly if its sunny, it won't blast the heating but will let the sun do the heating passively saving you money.

I know I sound like a fan-boy and I probably am a bit. Here's the thing, I happened to be looking at Nests (but not going to buy one because it wouldn't work for our irregular schedules), then I saw Tado and bought it. Its brilliant, I love it.

I'd really encourage anybody who is interest in Nest or Hive to check out the Tado.
https://www.tado.com/gb/
 

Deebs

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Do the sensors run off batteries? Or do you have to mains them? If batteries how long do they last?
Yes, the door sensors, smoke alarm, CO2 alarm all use batteries (the smoke/CO2 alarm can be connected to a permanent supply). However the devices go into a sleep mode and only wake up at a pre-set interval (changeable) to either report things you want or to get updated settings. Obviously if they are triggered they are instantly talking to the controller. So far I have not had to change a battery and the system has been in for over 16 months.

The thing I like about Z-Wave is that the network is encrypted and of a mesh design so the more devices (only powered can act as routers) the better the coverage.
 

Deebs

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I just want to do a huge big-up for Tado.

Its like Nest and Hive except better.
Let me explain why.
My partner and I both work in hospitals. Some days we're home late, some nights were out at work. Our schedules don't fit nicely into the Nests "I can learn" it box, because we just didn't think it would. How is it to know that my wife works 1/3 weekends but that 2/3 I'll be home. The Nest sounds like it works well for people who are home in the evenings and out 9-5.

Tado is SMART though, you fit the thermostat and install the phone app.
Then you set the temperature you want the house at when you're home.

If you go out, it geo-senses, so turns the heating off. And then, because its learned how long it takes to warm up your house, it turns it back on when you start moving towards home, at an appropriate time. So that when you get home, your house is warm.
So if your schedule changes, no worries, Tado has got it sorted for you when you get home.

It also does your hot water (something Nest doesn't do).
What I love is that its smart, unlike the Hive I dont HAVE to think "Oh I'm going home, better turn the heating on", I just go home an Tado has already turned the heating on for me. If I didn't want to look at the fancy graphs I don't need to. It just works without further messing.

For even more money saving, you can adjust the "curve" - ie. If I have it on the "Comfort" setting, it will make sure that the house is exactly the temperature we want by the time we get home. If I have it on the "eco" setting, it delays it slightly, so the house is still coming up to temperature by the time I get home. This is perfect for me because I cycle home, so I get home and the house doesn't feel like an oven, but as I cool down the temperature comes up.

Tado links with the internet so I can check the temperature at home while I'm out, change settings, turn things off or on if I wanted to (not that I need to). It also gets the local weather forecast. If its cold it knows the house might need a bit more heating and so will make sure to maintain the temperature. Similarly if its sunny, it won't blast the heating but will let the sun do the heating passively saving you money.

I know I sound like a fan-boy and I probably am a bit. Here's the thing, I happened to be looking at Nests (but not going to buy one because it wouldn't work for our irregular schedules), then I saw Tado and bought it. Its brilliant, I love it.

I'd really encourage anybody who is interest in Nest or Hive to check out the Tado.
https://www.tado.com/gb/
Hive can do the following:
  • Multiple timeslots per day for both heating and hot-water.
  • Allows remote control of both heating and hot-water.
  • Allows you to see the inside and outside temperature.
  • Uses geo-location to turn the heating/hot-water on or off.
The only thing it doesn't do at the moment is take into account the external weather conditions but I believe that is coming.
 

Tilda

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Essentially pretty similar then, if I wanted to I could set time slots, but its so easy to just set it to Auto and not have to worry about it.
The external temperature and direct sunlight thing is nifty though.
 

Deebs

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Essentially pretty similar then, if I wanted to I could set time slots, but its so easy to just set it to Auto and not have to worry about it.
The external temperature and direct sunlight thing is nifty though.
Very much so and I have to say that I couldn't live without it now, makes me feel all warm and fuzzy being able to turn off my heating if I know I am not coming home. Also makes me a lazy fucker as I can be sat on the sofa and think "oh it is cold" and reach for the phone and turn the heating up :p
 

smurkin

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Seems Nest's main advantage is that you don't need a any sort of device to set auto away. Geolocation wouldn't work for our family (most of us don't carry a phone and I work across the road - not to mention no cellphone signal in these parts). Its fully automatic. Also, Nest doesn't need to learn your habits - its fully programmable.. Would be nice to auto deactivate the HW though. :)
 

Tilda

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I guess its different systems for different people smurkin. It would be a real pain programing our nest because it would literally change week by week. And if there was an emergency at work and we had to stay late, there'd be no way of accounting for it.
 

Moriath

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Yes, the door sensors, smoke alarm, CO2 alarm all use batteries (the smoke/CO2 alarm can be connected to a permanent supply). However the devices go into a sleep mode and only wake up at a pre-set interval (changeable) to either report things you want or to get updated settings. Obviously if they are triggered they are instantly talking to the controller. So far I have not had to change a battery and the system has been in for over 16 months.

The thing I like about Z-Wave is that the network is encrypted and of a mesh design so the more devices (only powered can act as routers) the better the coverage.
I guess the z wave daughter board won't work with the pi 2. Any idea if they are bringing one out? Or is there a good forum to scan. Cheers
 

Deebs

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I guess the z wave daughter board won't work with the pi 2. Any idea if they are bringing one out? Or is there a good forum to scan. Cheers
Why wouldn't it? The GPIO connectors are the same from the PI, PI+ and PI 2 I thought?
 

Moriath

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Think it might need an update to work with the new cpu properly maybe.
 

Deebs

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Think it might need an update to work with the new cpu properly maybe.
Let's wait for the testing to start, it seems that you would just need to run the new kernel/raspbian image.
 

Tom

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The Tado thing looks pretty good. I was going to buy a Nest once I've finished demolishing and then rebuilding the two hallways in my house, but the Tado would probably work better for me since I have such an erratic schedule.

I bet the cat would hate it though. It'd be like "it's bastard freezing in here again, the cunt's gone away hasn't he?"
 

Syri

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The Tado thing looks pretty good. I was going to buy a Nest once I've finished demolishing and then rebuilding the two hallways in my house, but the Tado would probably work better for me since I have such an erratic schedule.

I bet the cat would hate it though. It'd be like "it's bastard freezing in here again, the cunt's gone away hasn't he?"
nah, it's a cat. it'll just tear up your sofa and snuggle up in the warm padding ;)
 

Tilda

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The Tado thing looks pretty good. I was going to buy a Nest once I've finished demolishing and then rebuilding the two hallways in my house, but the Tado would probably work better for me since I have such an erratic schedule.

I bet the cat would hate it though. It'd be like "it's bastard freezing in here again, the cunt's gone away hasn't he?"
You can set a minimum temperature. So if you like a toasty 19.8 degrees and think your cat will cope with 15 degrees, you just set 15 as your minimum. It really is fantastic!
 

Moriath

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You can set a minimum temperature. So if you like a toasty 19.8 degrees and think your cat will cope with 15 degrees, you just set 15 as your minimum. It really is fantastic!
Pfft burning gas for a moggy that prowls outside in all weathers. Lol
 

Deebs

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Just bought a 5 way power block with independent ability to power on/off each socket. Also it reports the power usage back to my Z-Wave controller per socket and total per block. The following shows one of my WiFi access points plugged into one of the sockets:

upload_2017-2-28_18-57-24.png

You cannot see the scale but it currently consuming 0.9 watts. Tomorrow, I will replace a power strip and move my 2 NAS servers, firewall, 5 port switch and BT modem to the strip to monitor their power usage.
 

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Deebs

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Another update, finally purchased Alexa and installed the ha-bridge onto my PI, and linked it and Hive to Alexa. Now I can control the lights, tv, amp, heating, music etc by using my voice. Basically anything in Domoticz can now be controlled by Alexa.
 

JBP|

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Has anyone got the Nest Hello yet? I'm considering getting one as it has better integration with Google home than the Ring thingy, but it seems I'd need to buy a new mains powered doorbell chime too :/
 

Scouse

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Just watched the video for that on their website. Apart from answering the door to delivery men and asking them to leave shit, it seems like a way to keep people hanging rather than just getting off your arse and letting them in.

TBH, I've not had a doorbell for 5 years. Delivery men knock, anyone else who comes to my house comes around the back and comes straight in, 'cause I'm not interested in anyone else :)
 

Moriath

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I got a normal doorbell but i have an outside light with camera and microphone etc on. Its already caughtthe cleaner not doing a proper job and skiving off after half the time we pay her for.
 

JBP|

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I'm considering getting one mainly because Mrs JBP| found a carving knife stashed in our front garden hedge a few weeks ago and a few days later I caught two young fellows snooping around said hedge. Obviously they ran off as soon as the front door started to open.

The above isn't a regular occurrence but would feel a bit better with something keeping an eye on things and Mrs JBP| isn't keen on cctv cameras hanging off of the house.
 

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