Remember when we were children watching science fiction movies and TV shows like the Jetsons, Star Trek or Star Wars? Where everything was made possible by the push of a button? We have now arrived at that time. Home Automation covers a broad spectrum of technology, but for most home applications, it is used for music, home security, lighting and shade controls, home theaters, climate control, and home integration.It can take care of many household tasks, such as turning on the sprinkler system, coffeepot or dishwasher at a specific time of day or night. Sensors can be installed inside and outside to detect motion, or attached to a bed to alert someone if an elderly or infirm family member falls during the night. There are even a large variety of controllers, from wall panels, portable remote controls, to iPhones, iPads and computer programs.
Audio distribution is a whole house system that will provide music to whatever room you choose. There are 2 types of distributed audio: single zone and multiple zone. Single zone allows music to reach whatever rooms you want, but it’s limited in that it only allows one source to provide music. With multiple zone systems, different sources of music can be provided to different rooms at the same time. Intercom systems can provide us with the ability to communicate with family members from anywhere in the house.
Home Security systems will allow you to program your alarm system or even provide a camera view to different parts of your home or yard when you’re traveling. It can provide a panic button to elderly relatives who live alone, sense water, gas or carbon monoxide leaks, lock and unlock doors and windows, etc. and much more.
Lighting Controls can keep your home more secure by simulating the movement patterns of your family during the course of a day or evening, so that you can enjoy an out of town vacation without anyone knowing that you’re gone. It can also be used to save energy when you’re home by dimming lights or timing them to go on and off.
Shade Control is exactly that. It controls window and skylight shades, or window draperies by opening and closing them by a controller. Usually used in conjunction with lighting control systems. It is the fastest growing and most sought after area of home automation, because it is also one of the most affordable.
Home Theaters are a very popular way to use home automation these days. With the price of home theater systems becoming more affordable, we’re seeing a great increase in installations of automation systems to manage all of the different remote controls that come with each component. Imagine the enjoyment on having one device that can dim the lights, close the window shades, turn on the TV and DVD player and adjust the volume without ever having to leave your seat!
Climate control is a system that allows you to program the temperature in your home from one place. This will save energy because only the rooms that are being used will be heated or cooled, and the temperature can be adjusted for each individual space.
Home integration links up all of the automated systems within a home. The home theater/entertainment system, climate, light and shade system, home security, appliances, outdoor systems such as pool and spa controls, sprinkler system and whatever else you may have can all be controlled through one comprehensive system.
Each room or area can be linked by an intuitive touch panel that can search through and play CDs, DVDs or channel surf on your TV, and you can add closed-circuit televisions for added control and security.