As technology is always changing and improving, and we are now at a point where “smart” technology has integrated into every aspect of our lives, with the centre being our smartphones.
That being said, we can also turn our lovely home into a smart home, as the majority of our household devices: doors, sounds, curtains and blinds, hydro and lighting is controlled by smarthome apps.
With lighting being one of the most important features of every home, smart lighting apps are available to help take your home lighting situation up a notch.
Benefits of Smart Home Lighting Devices & Mobile apps
As one of the top Toronto Custom Home Electrician firms, our team at Hotwire Electric always stays up-to-date with the latest in home lighting. We will discuss the advantages of home lighting apps, and the available options on the market, so you can make use of this new technology for your home.
Energy saving for smart home
In addition to being more sustainable, using smart apps for home lighting will lighten the load on your wallet every month. When you can ensure that the lights in your home are lit only when they need to be, you can start seeing how this will have a positive affect on your bills.
Convenience for home owners
How many times have you been outside, or driving, and started to wonder if you had turned off all the lights, closed all the windows, or turn off all the taps? That happens to all of us, and the smart home apps really came to the rescue. You can now be away from home, but still checking on your security or simply lighting up the place to make it appear occupied, with just a few simple touches on your phone screen. Also, if you forget to turn something off, there’s no worry. You can do that remotely.
Easy accessibility for Torontonians
Accessibility is for everyone. And accessibility becomes more important and meaningful for the elderly, disabled, or anyone else who may have trouble around the house. The smart apps will enable your loved ones the ability to control and access their own environment with ease with a handheld touchscreen.
Alongside with the mentioned above advantages, having fewer controls boards or switches will free up some of your indoor living area, so you can do more with the unused space. This small change can really amp up the aesthetics of your home.
Lighting For Home Security
As part of custom home improvement, integrating a lighting system into your smart-grid home system can illuminate your indoor and outdoor lighting automatically to make your home more welcoming, inviting and safer. Ideally, your lighting system will be linked up conveniently with your door locks.
According to Bill Weingarten, owner of HomeTech,
the homeowner can have a system that is customized to his needs. For example, the motion sensor board can be placed on the garage door, or by the entrance of the house, so the homeowner can turn on the light inside the house from the outside. This placement acts as a deterrent to intruders as it makes it look like the house is occupied while you are away.
At night, the homeowner can shut down all the lights, lock the doors, turn down the HVAC system and make sure that the garage doors are close just with a simple push button.
Lighting sensors and dimmers for smart home lighting
Lighting sensors and dimmers have been available for years, but now there are updated versions that are controlled by radio waves that link back to your smart home integration system.
The new lighting sensors and dimmers can be placed into your existing light switch outlets to turn the lights off and on or dim them depending on the time of day and how much natural light is coming in through your windows.
Joe Corona, owner of Corona Integrated Systems explains
“They work especially well on remodeling projects where you may not be able to get into the walls to install wiring,”.
The radio-control sensors and dimmers can operate lights inside and outside your home, turning on landscape flood lighting as well as lights in your garage, kitchen or any room in your home. With the domination of smartphones and portable devices such as iPads and tablets, you can program them in your fully integrated system so the lights come on and turn off automatically at a preset time. For example, you can have the light comes on at 6:30AM and turn off when everyone is off to work or to school and comes on again when everyone is home for the night.
Smart Home Lighting Devices and Apps for Toronto Homes
Flux Bluetooth Smart LED Light Bulb
If you are looking for a device that does it all, Flux Bluetooth Smart LED Light Bulb is the one. This single bulb supports over 16 million color gradients, and is controllable entirely via a smartphone app. It can be programmed to shine different colors at different times of the day, and can even be programmed to react to music in the room.
WeMo Smart LED Lighting Starter Set
The WeMo system is a modular set of lightning that can be combined and built up with additional bulbs. The starter set includes two WeMo Smart Light Bulbs and one WeMo Link that’s placed centrally in the home. This allows you to connect up to 50 smart bulbs and control them individually or as a group.
GE Wink Connected Home Hub
This hub is designed to be a simple one-size-fits-all solution to get your smart home started, and it’s compatible with a range of technology including Z-wave, Zigbee, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, & Lutron ClearConnect so that all your smart products can be controlled via the simple Wink app. This could be your perfect foot in the door to the world of smart homes.
Whether it is for a wild party, a relaxing evening after work, a movie marathon with your kids, a night gaming, or a focused work setting, the Smart Bulb will set a tone for you. These fantastic creations allow for you to directly control the multicolored bulbs themselves via bluetooth or wifi technology, right from your phone. With all these advantages aside, there is still more to appreciate about the Smfx smart bulb. Since it is an LED, it will last anywhere from 25,000 to 50,000 hours. At the best rate, that is about 49,000 more hours than an incandescent bulb will last you, which means that although you may pay a higher price to buy the bulb initially, in the long run the Smart Bulb will save you a lot of money. Additionally, LED bulbs generally will emit about 10% of the carbon dioxide that an incandescent would, which makes them environmentally safer.
Philips Hue Personal Wireless Lighting
This starter pack is the beginning piece of a set that could include up to 50 bulbs on a single bridge, all controllable remotely. One of its unique features is the ability to create lighting scenes based on your favorite photos, using the included free smartphone app.
Apple Homekit is designed to work through the apps that control your individual smart home devices, enabling the apps to connect, resulting in a comprehensive network that can be controlled from one place. Apple HomeKit can be used in conjunction with Philips Hue to gain you total control over your lighting situation.
Apple HomeKit’s foundation working mechanism is creating “scenes” to connect and control your smart home appliances in different combination. This means that simple one-touch interactions can perform a suite of functions in your home.
Above are some of the latest and well-performing smart home lighting solutions. If you are thinking of installing a system in which you can trust with taking care of your home, as well as offering a more convenient living space, it is important that you work with a trusted residential electrician.
If you require further assistance, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at 416-553-5533 or contact us for inspirations and ideas.
Resources: Hotwire Electric’s Home Automation tips and advice on the Marc and Mandy show