Gimmie Java!

The HT Guys love their Starbucks. If you want to say thanks, a cup of joe will do just fine! Starbucks-Donate

Watch the Videos

 

YouTube
 
Twitter
Categories
Friday
Feb022018

Podcast #829: Five Reasons to Automate Your Home

The HT Guys have been singing the praises of home automation for about ten years now. It starts slow with one device and then quickly becomes an obsession. But it's the one thing that we have added to our homes that gets no pushback from family members. So if you are thinking about going down the home automation rabbit hole and are looking for a way to justify it, we have you covered. This is our list of five reasons to automate your home.

Download this Episode.

Support the show with Patreon!

Listen to the show

Today's Show:

News:

Other:

Amazon Prime:

Sign up for Amazon Prime and enjoy:

  • Free Two Day Shipping!
  • Instant Streaming of TV Shows and Movies
  • Instant Access to thousands of Kindle Books
  • The HT Guys gratitude!

 

Five Reasons to Automate Your Home

The HT Guys have been singing the praises of home automation for about ten years now. It starts slow with one device and then quickly becomes an obsession. But it's the one thing that we have added to our homes that gets no pushback from family members. So if you are thinking about going down the home automation rabbit hole and are looking for a way to justify it, we have you covered. This is our list of five reasons to automate your home.

  1. Convenience - Automation reduces the number of steps required to setup your home for the perfect evening. With a touch of a button or tap on your phone lights are dimmed, blinds are closed, and temperature is set to make watching a movie a perfect experience. And because your home is Smart, it will adjust for sunrise and sunset times year round. Did you leave your home with the heater on? Maybe the garage door was left open. Automation allows you to deal with this issues from the office. No need to rush home. This also leads to piece of mind. Speaking of which…

  2. Peace of Mind - You never have to worry about an appliance left on or weather the front door is locked are even if the garage door was left open. The other day I (Ara) noticed that my neighbor’s garage door was left open. Fortunately I was home. I called him and asked if he wanted me to close it for him. He was very appreciative of that. Needless to say it would have been inconvenient for him to drive home and close it. Since we can’t be everywhere, having a means to remotely secure your home does offer you some peace of mind.

  3. Security - This goes hand in hand with Peace of mind but we are separating it out to focus on those who want to steal from you. We know that in most cases thieves want easy targets and if your home looks like no one is home it's an easy target. To avoid this we can use automation to turn on lights. Sure you can turn them on with manual timers but if someone is casing the place they see a pattern. Automation can add some variability to the lighting sequence. You can also install cameras with sensors in your doorbell or place a camera in a window. If a crook sees a home that is highly automated he will probably just move on.

  4. Savings - Have you ever left for vacation and forgot to set your thermostat to vacation mode? Depending on the season, heating or cooling your home for no one is a waste of money. Without automation you would have to call a friend and hope that he or she has a way to get into your house and adjust your thermostat. Or just forgo the cost savings, which depending on where you live could be significant. With home automation you can just pull out your smartphone and adjust the thermostat from anywhere.

  5. No More Keys - With a smart lock you can enter you home without fumbling for keys. You can even create codes for specific individuals that have limited time access. On a recent trip we had a package that arrived after we left. We didn’t want it sitting there for a week so I created a special one time use code for a neighbor and I asked her to take the package and put it inside the front door. I was alerted when she walked up to my door by my SkyBell doorbell. Then I received another alert when the door was unlocked. The door lock log stored the time and access number that was used to open the door for historical reference. Then when she walked into the home I received a notification from the motion sensor. And finally the whole thing was captured on camera. Without the automated door lock I would have had to ask her to keep the package at my neighbor’s house and then get it the day after we got home which was Christmas. So no more keys hits on all the other points, Convenience, Peace of Mind, Security, and even Savings!

 

 

 

Download Episode #829

Reader Comments (3)

Hi guys... great show! I have a home automation question. I'm moving into a new home and just discovered that due to a design flaw, the interior light switch is located on the hinge side of the front door so as you enter the home you have to walk around and reach behind the door to turn the living room lights on.

What would you recommend to automated my light switch as I pull in the driveway? I currently use an iPhone with an Alpine car play head unit in my car. Is there some thing out there that would allow me to have Siri turn on the lights inside when arriving at night either from the car or as I approach the front door?

I am in the Apple eco system but currently have zero home automation equipment so I'm open to other brand solutions if necessary. I'd like to turn on the lights and possibly unlock the front door by voice or phone command upon arriving home...

Thanks for the help!

Alan

February 13, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterBig Al

Hi Al,

You can easily do this with automation. Replace the switch with a HomeKit switch and you can have the light come on as soon as you get home. I do this with my garage door. It opens up when I am one street aver from my house. But be aware that it does fail to recognize that I am home about one out of 30 times.

February 14, 2018 | Registered CommenterHT Guys

Wanted to comment on the discussion around running a PLEX server.

A couple of reasons why I prefer buying disks and ripping them to my PLEX system:

1) Online availability of content can and does change. Recently Disney announced that they will pull all of their content from 3rd party streaming services and consolidate it into their own streaming service. That means I have to pay for yet another streaming service. I've also found that the status of existing content can and does change. I was recently watching an older TV series. Originally the series was included as part of my Amazon subscription. Half way through the series, they started charging for it. :-(

2) I get access to all the movie extras such as multiple cuts (director's cut, extended cuts, etc.), "making of" shorts, audio commentaries and the like. I tend to love that kind of stuff so it is desirable for me.

3) Provide remote access to my entire library to family and friends. They love this.

4) For in home viewing, I don't have to rely on my ISP. I've had a several times where I was interrupted while streaming a great movie when my internet went down. That sucks - especially when friends are watching with you.

One other note regarding cost. I tend to purchase my Blu-ray's during sales. I've probably spent an average of $10 per movie. I rarely buy a disk when it is first released since it is so expensive. If you shop around you can find some good bargains.

Thanks for the great podcast!

-GW

April 15, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterGW

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>