Home automation is the home upgrade everyone is talking about! Here’s everything you’ll need to make your next project go smoothly.

1)     Strong WIFI

This may seem like an obvious requirement, but it may surprise you how many people neglect this before throwing themselves into a new project!

WIFI is the foundation upon which any smart home is built. If you throw things on to a wobbly foundation, your new features won’t be reliable.

There are some basic fixes you can attempt before chatting with your internet service provider about a possible upgrade.

  • Find a new central location for your router
  • Grab a WIFI extender to remove dead zones
  • Make sure there aren’t any unnecessary connections leeching your WIFI
  • Protect it with a password!

It’s also worth noting that many routers have hard limits on the number of devices that can be connected to them (typically around 250). Even before reaching this point, your devices’ performance may start to suffer. Check with your manufacturer before planning any extensive upgrades.

One thing you’ll also want to check is the frequency your smart devices tap into. There are two main frequencies to consider, 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz.

As a rule, 2.4GHz has a longer range, but 5GHz is faster.

If you mix and match frequencies, you have an increased risk of interference, which can hamper the performance of your smart devices, so it’s best to pick one and try to stick with it.

Most of the smart devices we stock operate on a 2.4GHz frequency, but it’s always worth double checking.

2)     A Hub

There are numerous smart home hubs available such as:

  • Google Nest
  • Amazon Alexa
  • Apple Home Kit

These hubs are what will allow you to interact with your smart home, putting all the various routines you create into one easy to access system. They also come with voice assistants, which is the simplest and most direct way of controlling your smart home!

Our devices use the Smart Life or Lutec Apps, which can be paired with Amazon Alexa or Google Home.

3)     A Plan!

Smart homes are built around designing ecosystems that suit your lifestyle. It can be tempting to throw everything at the wall and see what sticks, but you’ll save money, time and a lot of stress by having a plan ready.

What’s the best way of creating a plan?

Firstly, decide what problems you’re actually looking to fix.

  • Do you want a more secure home?
  • Do you panic about leaving the lights on when you leave home?
  • Do you want to have amazing colour changing lights to wow your guests?

Once you’ve identified the problem, you can take time to research how a smart home can help, figure out what products you’ll need to buy to make it happen and you’ll be able to ensure everything is compatible with what you have.

Having a plan will also help you make and keep to a budget, which will help keep your smart home a lot more affordable.

4)     Set Things Up Carefully

When you’re building up your routines and schedules, it can be tempting to give systems silly names or simple placeholders to help you test things out. This can lead to trouble down the road, as voice commands in particular need to be precise or they won’t work as well. ‘Living room lights’ works a lot better than ‘lights 2’!

You’ll also really want to avoid duplicate names!

Likewise, you’ll also need to consider if your device is in the right spot. Can it receive a WIFI signal and then function as intended? This is particularly key for smart cameras like the Vesta Outdoor LED Wall Light With PIR Motion Sensor and Camera.

5)     Smart Lights!

Smart lights are one of the simplest and most popular smart home upgrades on the market, so they’re a fantastic place to start. Our strip lights can be converted into smart lighting, while our Easilight range is easy to retrofit into your existing fittings.

You’ll need to choose some bulbs (such as the EasiLight E27 RGB+CCT LED Bulb) and a receiver.

If you’ve already bought some Easilight products from us in the past, the EasiLight Wifi Receiver can be added into your system, letting you turn them from simple colour changing bulbs into smart bulbs!

Want to learn more about how we can help you get smart lighting into your home? Simply give us a call on 0116 321 4120, or send an email over to cs@wled.co.uk!

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